Do you have questions relating to your child or spousal support case? Here is a list of common questions that we get from our clients.
I have applied for unemployment because of the coronavirus, what happens to my support obligation?
Your support obligation does not automatically change. If you are the custodial or non-custodial parent it is your obligation to change the existing Court order with the Court. This means that you have to come to a Court agreement, file a Court motion or otherwise obtain orders that alter the orders. It is in your best interest to change the order if you are overpaying or underpaid support because we do not know how long this crisis will last.
The other side has promised to accept a lower amount of support, is this enough?
Relying on oral promises to modify child support or spousal is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make in your family law case. Although your ex may have a good relationship with you now, there is no telling how your relationship will be in the next few years. Additionally, the Court will (unless exceptions apply) recognize disputed oral agreements to reduce support.
Should I wait to file?
You should not wait to file a motion to modify support, because support can only be modified prospectively. In other words, you can only change support going forward from the date a motion has been filed.
What affect does the Court’s closure have on filling for support?
The Court closure means that you could be responsible for an unfair high support amount for longer than necessary.
Can I be responsible for the support that accrued during the Court’s partial closure?
Yes, you can. Most Courts have been partially shut down (except for restraining orders and emergency custody motions) since the middle of March. Most will not be open until the start of April. The Judicial Council did designate the closure as a holiday for purposes of several deadlines. It’s in your best interest to contact your local attorney’s office to ensure that your support can be changed to the earliest date possible.
Have the filing procedures change?
Yes, the existing procedures have remarkably changed as a result of the existing crisis. Most counties have already adopted or are currently adopting local rules to allow parties to file emergency motions on custody and visitation during the existing pandemic. Those local rules vary by County. You should contact a local attorney to ensure the procedures are being followed properly.
If you have any questions on your potential family law case feel free to give our attorneys a call at 916-923-2800. Our offices are still open and ready to with any of your family law issues during this existing crisis.