Modification of Support


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Mesa Family Lawyers


1731 W. Baseline Road, #101
Mesa, AZ 85202
(480) 263-1699

Glendale Family Lawyers


8546 N 59th Ave #212
Glendale, AZ 85302
(602) 509-0955

Phoenix Family Lawyers


343 W Roosevelt St #100
Phoenix, AZ 85003
(480) 680-9126

Avondale Family Lawyers


12725 W Indian School Rd,
Avondale, AZ 85392
(623) 399-4222

Arizona Modification of Support Attorneys


Our Arizona modification of support lawyers from My Arizona Lawyers advises clients in child support modifications, spousal support modifications, and child support determinations.  Child support in Arizona calculates by taking each parent’s income, household income of each party, and other pertinent circumstances.

If you’re looking to adjust your child support order, the Arizona family law team at My Arizona Lawyers puts you on the right path.  We assist in the process of requesting a modification in child support, parenting time, or spousal support.  Our family lawyers know the best ways to achieve a successful modification.  Contact our team today and protect your assets.

Modifications either have to be an increase or decrease in what you are paying.  Additionally, you can also modify the time that you have custody, depending upon your situation.  Regardless, for a successful modification,  prove to the court a substantial change in circumstances.  In Arizona family law court there must be warrant to grant modifications whether permanent or temporary.

Arizona Child Support Modification FAQs


The Existing Child Support Order is unfair, Can I Modify It?

There are time restrictions based on circumstances to qualify, but you can on occasion modify your existing child support order.

Do I Have to Go to Court to Modify My Child Support?

Even if you and the other parent agree to a modified amount, you will have to appear before a judge who will enter the order. The judge is looking out for the best interests of the child, and may refuse to decrease support without good cause. You will need to go to court unless you have a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) clause in your support order, which automatically increases payment with a standard like the Consumer Price Index.

How Often Can you Modify a Child Support Order?

You can request a child support modification for no cause once every three years. If you have a substantial and continuing change in circumstances, you can request a modification once per year. These waiting periods vary by state, and you will need to use the laws of the state out of which the support was ordered.

What is the Standard for Modifying Child Support?

The standard is a “substantial and continuing change in circumstances.” Substantial means the change will bring a significant impact on the parent’s income. Continuing means that the circumstance will be present for a significant amount of time.

How far back Can I Modify Child Support?

Child support can’t be retroactively modified- once it’s due, it’s due. Support payments can only be modified going forward. That is why if you think your support payments are unfair, you should request a modification as soon as possible. Failure to pay your child support in full can result in severe debt collection efforts, like wage garnishments of up to 60%. There can be other serious consequences, like having your driver’s license suspended.

I have a new baby, Can I Modify my Child Support?

Starting around 2008, child support laws began to change to allow for modification based on the birth of a subsequent child. The court will consider the best interests of both children, and may order slightly lower support to a parent who has a new child to support.

My Ex Just Quit His job and now wants to Lower His Child Support Payments, Can He Do That?

The judge will likely rule that voluntarily quitting a job isn’t sufficient reason to modify a support order. Unlike being laid off, the parent has the option to continue working and paying support but simply wants to avoid doing so. The parent will continue accruing support arrears at the current rate, and at the same rate for at least 1 more year if the request is denied- and now that parent won’t have a job.

What is Considered a Substantial Change in Circumstances?

Substantial usually means a change in income of at least 10%. An experienced family law attorney will be able to tell you if your life change is significant enough to satisfy this requirement.

Can My Child Support be Temporarily Modified While I am Searching for a Job?

A temporary modification of support may be ordered if a situation won’t be permanent. Such examples include one parent being laid off from their job, the child having a serious medical emergency, or an emergency change in custody- e.g., one parent is in a bad accident and has to stay at the hospital.

Our Current Order Allows My Wife to Claim the Kids on Her Taxes, Can that be Modified?

Yes. You will both have to appear before the judge to argue who should get to claim the kids on taxes. Be careful because you could be ordered to pay more support, and you will be ineligible to request another modification for at least one year.

If I Request a Modification, Can My Child Support Payments Go Up?

It isn’t unheard of for a parent to request a modification of child support and end up paying more than before. You should speak with an experienced family law attorney before proceeding with a child support modification.

Common Reasons for Modifying Support Include:



  • If there is a substantial cost of living increase.

  • Especially relevant is an increase (usually 10% or more) in the paying parent’s income.

  • Equally important is a decrease (usually 10% or more) in the paying parent’s income.

  • Also, if either party gets remarried.

  • The needs of the child substantially increase leading to additional medical, educational, or age-related expenses.

  • Hardship by either party. Be it: Disability, illness, or another financial burden.

  • Equally important is if the custodial parent loses a job.

  • One of the parent’s legal responsibility to support the other person changes significantly.

  • Also, if one of the parent’s does something substantial against the law or egregious towards the safety of the child.

In Arizona, once a party has received a child support order from the Arizona Family Court, the order may be modified but only if certain conditions in the case are met. Generally, a party files a Petition to Modify with the court and requests the change in child or spousal support.

My Arizona Lawyers provides free consultations for parties interested in modification of support issues.  If you have questions or issues regarding the modification of support or family court orders, we would be happy to answer your questions and advise you.  Call our experienced Arizona family attorneys today.

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