Family Court book and gavelThis is the next post in my series on the modification of child support in Virginia and elsewhere in the state. My last article discussed how “underemployment” can impact the calculation of child support. It is important to understand that whether or not the Court will find someone to be underemployed will depend on the specific facts of your case. It is best to discuss your situation with a family law attorney so that you may fully understand all of your options. In this article I will discuss an important topic – the process by which a modification to support is requested. If you require assistance then call my office today to speak with a lawyer.

The process of modifying child support begins by filing a Motion with The Court. This is a document in which the requesting party will state the reason for which they are requesting a change, the amount which they believe they should be paying or receiving, and the calculations by which they reached that amount. Each side will also be required to file a financial disclosure with the Court. This disclosure will require documentation of each party’s current salary/earnings as well as other information related to assets and debts. The other side will have an opportunity to file an Opposition to the Motion and a hearing date will be set.

What happens at the initial hearing will depend on the facts of the case. If the income of the parties is not in dispute then setting a support amount will often be relatively straightforward. Also, there would not likely be a need for additional proceedings. If, however, there is a dispute as to how much a party is actually earning, or whether a party is underemployed, then it may be necessary to schedule an evidentiary hearing at which the Court will issue a final ruling. If an evidentiary hearing is set, then the Court will likely issue a temporary child support order which must be followed until the final hearing is held. Again, each case will be fact specific. It is important that you retain an attorney experienced in handling such matters so that your case is handled properly.

If you require the services of a child support lawyer in the Norfolk and Virginia Beach area then contact my office today to schedule an initial consultation. I have handled many such matters and I am ready to assist you. We serve clients in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News, Hampton, Williamsburg, and Yorktown, as well as the surrounding counties of Northampton, Isle of Wight, York and James City.