Oftentimes, non-custodial parents in Iowa miss child support payments because they can’t afford them. Many parents want to keep up with their obligations, but changes in their life circumstances simply make it impossible. If you can’t make child support payments, it’s important that you file a petition for a child support modification.
Back child support can’t be discharged in bankruptcy
Even if you lost your job last month, your child support obligations will remain the same until you file a request for a modification with the court. Missed payments will still follow you even after the order is modified, and any amount you still owe cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. That’s why it is crucial to file a petition for a child support modification as soon as possible after a change in circumstances.
Try to communicate with the custodial parent
If you can let your child’s other parent know about your loss of income, this communication may help your child support modification go smoother. It’s not always possible to reach an agreement outside of court, but it’s worth a try. it is usually easier and less expensive to compromise informally before finalizing the agreement before a family law judge.
Make sure you document your loss of income
You will need tangible evidence of a change in financial circumstances in order to get a child support modification. The change must be significant enough for a judge to agree that it requires a reduction in your payments. Whether you lost your job, incurred significant medical expenses, or had your work hours cut, it’s important that you gather proof about what changed.
Try to keep up with your current payments
While you are petitioning for a child support modification, it’s important that you show that you are making a sincere effort to keep up with your current payments. Even if it’s not possible for you to pay the full amount, paying a portion of what you owe will at least show that you are trying. Doing this will also help you in the long run since back child support can add up.