Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration governs child support modifications in Alabama and our Hoover child support lawyers know how to get this process started. Normally, a court will consider a child support modification in Jefferson County if a parent’s income changes by more than 10%. Other situations, like a parent paying a lot of money for a child’s medical care, can also warrant adjusting child support amounts. If you are a parent or you have legal custody of a child under nineteen in Alabama, your Hoover child support lawyer may request a modification in child support whenever a change in circumstances occurs. Contact our Hoover and Shelby County child support lawyer today for a consultation.
Our Hoover child support lawyer can file your petition in the Family Court Division of the Jefferson County Circuit Court. The Circuit Court has divisions that concern themselves with child support in Hoover and Bessemer, depending on what area of Jefferson County you live in. Your child support attorney in Hoover will normally file a Petition to Modify Child Support in the circuit court in the county where the custodial parent lives or in the county that issued the original child support order.
The court will consider your grounds for the request once you file your petition. They will consider factors like what has changed in your circumstances to request a modification. You will need to sufficiently support your income changes with evidence like pay stubs. You’ll also need to provide this to your Hoover child support attorney to show as evidence. If you had to cover a child’s expenses for something outstanding like an extended hospital stay, this is something that you can reference. You’ll need copies of those bills and proof that you paid them via canceled checks or bank statements.
Child Support Attorneys in Hoover
Once you’ve gathered your evidence, our child support attorneys in Hoover will obtain a Petition to Modify Child Support (Form PS-02) and a financial affidavit (Form CS-41) to file along with documents we prepare for you. Once your Hoover child support attorney files the petition, a copy will be sent by the court to the child’s other parent for service of process. This can be completed by certified mail or they may have a deputy sheriff deliver it in person.
A hearing will be set in court to consider the petition. Your local child support lawyer will argue your case for you to the Court and your ex-spouse will argue their case. You will need to provide important documentation that can support your case such as W-2s, pay stubs, income tax returns, bank statements, and any extraordinary bills you may have incurred in caring for your child. When deciding whether to award a modification of child support, the court must consider whether you proved a “material change in circumstances that is substantial and continuing.”
But when do modifications go into effect? If the court orders a modification, all child support payments after the date of filing the petition are subject to the revised amount. So if you lose your job, for example, it is generally advisable your Hoover child support lawyer file your petition as soon as possible. That’s because sometimes it can take months to reach a hearing date and a ruling, but all payments after the date of filing are retroactively adjusted once the ruling is made.
Attorney’s fees for these petitions can vary from one child support attorney in Hoover to another. Generally, you pay your Hoover child support lawyer a retainer. A retainer fee is money paid in advance for services that will be rendered. It is usually paid monthly based on the attorney’s estimate of the work they will be doing for you during that time. If the child’s other parent opposes the modification, the retainer can cost more money since the case will be argued longer. When both parents agree on the modification, the retainer is fairly inexpensive, because it is an uncontested request. The more adversarial the process is, the more expensive it generally becomes. Call our Hoover child support attorney today to file your child support petition in Jefferson County, Alabama.