After you have gone through a divorce and are paying or receiving child support, there may come a time when you believe the amount you pay or the child receives should be adjusted. In Illinois, this may be done through a modification review process.
When Can I Have My Child Support Order Modified?
Under Illinois family law, an order for child support is eligible for modification review every three years, or when there is a significant change in either parent’s income or in the needs of the child. In the case of a three-year review, a parent will receive a letter from the agency in charge, informing them of the right to request a review.
Who Conducts the Modification Review?
Modification reviews of child support orders in Illinois are done by the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS), Division of Child Support Services (DCSS). The agency is tasked with the responsibility to make sure child support orders are consistent with applicable Illinois law and changed circumstances involving all concerned.
What Are the Requirements for Child Support Modification Review?
To qualify for a modification, one of the following conditions must be met:
At least three years must have passed since the date child support order was issued or since the date of the decision from the last modification review.
There is a substantial change in the non-custodial parent’s income.
There is nothing in the order that addresses the child’s healthcare coverage.
There is a written communication received by DCSS from the custodial parent, the non-custodial parent, or an agency in another state requesting a review.
If you have requested the modification review, both you and your ex-spouse will receive a letter from DCSS stating whether the order qualifies for modification review or not. You should expect this letter in 30 days or less from when DCSS receives your request. If the order qualifies for a modification, both you and your ex-spouse will be asked to provide information to be evaluated in determining whether your request should be granted.
What Happens After a Child Support Modification Review?
DCSS will analyze the information you and your ex-spouse provide to recalculate the amount of child support your child should receive. The results of the analysis will be sent to you by mail. This notice may state that the amount of child support payments will increase, decrease, or remain unchanged. If you disagree with the decision, the law allows you various ways you can have this decision itself reviewed.
Contact a DuPage County Child Support Lawyer
Requesting and obtaining a child support modification can be a complicated process, especially when there are other issues that cannot be resolved by DCSS. To ensure that the decisions made will meet your family’s needs while protecting your financial resources, you should work with an attorney who is experienced in family law and understands how the child support modification review process works. If you believe there are good reasons why child support ordered in your case should be modified, our knowledgeable Wheaton, IL family law attorneys are ready to help you get the modifications you need. To schedule a free consultation, call 630-871-1002 today.