Following a divorce, your circumstances or those of your ex-spouse are likely to change over time, whether financially or personally.  Fortunately, Texas law allows the parties to a divorce to seek modification of the terms of the divorce.  As McKinney divorce attorneys, we are experienced in assisting our clients with post-divorce modification relating to income and financial needs, child custody, as well as enforcement issues.  Here are the basics of post-divorce modification in Texas.

Reasons for Post-Divorce Modifications Related to a Change in Finances

One of the most common areas where Texas post-divorce modifications may be necessary is child support.  If the parent paying child support loses a job, or switches to a significantly lower paying job, he or she is entitled to request a reduction in child support payments.  Conversely, if the parent paying child support has a spike in income, the other parent may request additional child support.  If a child has an increase in medical expenses or other needs, the noncustodial parent may be required to chip in.  If a child’s expenses, medical or otherwise, were to decrease, the noncustodial parent can request to pay less in child support. 

Am I Entitled to a Post-Divorce Modification?

To modify child support or medical support, you must show that either the circumstances of the child have “materially and substantially changed” or it has been at least three years since the last child support order, and a new support order “would differ from the last support order by at least 20% or $100.” 

What if my Ex-Spouse and I Agree to the Modification?

If you and your ex agree to the modification and are willing to sign the modification suit forms, your modification case is described as “uncontested.”  If you or your ex will not sign the order modifying the parent-child relationship, the case is “uncontested,” and a hearing will be required.  If the party who refuses to sign the order fails to appear in court, the modification suit may be finished by default. 

What if my Spouse is not Complying With the Obligations of our Divorce Agreement?

If your spouse has failed to pay child or spousal support, or to turn over certain marital property as directed by the court, you may be able to bring an enforcement action.  While an enforcement order cannot alter the divorce decree, it can clarify the decree or provide instructions on how to implement the decree. 

How Our McKinney Divorce Attorneys Can Help

If you need assistance with a post-divorce modification, we welcome you to contact the McKinney divorce attorneys at Nordhaus & Nordhaus at (214) 726-1450 or by email for a free consultation.