My daughter turned 18 and now I only have one child to support. Revisiting Child Support to modify requires agreement from both myself and my ex. However, I owe in a total of approx. $10K in child support and medical insurance expenses. Will a court use these arrears against me and not grant child support modification?
If your Separation Agreement has not been incorporated into a Court Order then the court has no authority to modify it. The Agreement is a contract between you and the other parent. You and your ex can try to reach an agreement as to the new amount of child support. If you are able to reach an agreement you need to have an Addendum to the Separation Agreement that states the new amount of child support. This Addendum must meet certain legal standards and you may want an attorney to draft the document. If you don't reach an agreement then you can file a child support action through the courts and have child support established through a court order. That order would supersede the Separation Agreement and you would no longer pay under the original document.
As to arrears, the court has no jurisdiction over these arrears as it stands at this time. The only way your ex can force collection of that money from you is to file a Breach of Contract action through the courts. The court would make a determination as to whether you had breached the contract and then put an order in place for you to pay that money to the other party.
I suggest you seek the advice of an attorney. It is definitely going to be worth it to at least pay an attorney for a consultation and quite possibly they could represent you to take care of everything with an Addendum or a court order. This could actually save you money even with attorney fees. Good luck.
A court will only step in to modify child support if the separation agreement was incorporated into the divorce judgment. If the separation agreement was not incorporated into the divorce judgment, you will have to either have to have an initial determination of child support by the court or amend the agreement.
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