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Pandemic-linked challenge: spotlight on Michigan child support

Child support in a Michigan divorce is far from being determined via a cookie-cutter formula that is routinely applicable in all cases.

In fact, support outcomes are highly variable and dependent on circumstances that are flatly unique in every instance. A court will oversee and issue a ruling in a child custody matter, being guided by a host of factors enumerated under statutory law. The formulaic process followed will consider issues like the following:

  • Number of children being supported
  • Income of both parents
  • Parameters surrounding custody and parenting time
  • Major expenses relevant to each child
  • Extenuating circumstances (e.g., a parent’s health, job situation and so forth)

Although a support order is considered to be the norm going forward following its issuance, courts duly note that reality sometimes weighs in with altered circumstances that necessitate reconsideration.

The unprecedented health crisis currently playing out across the country and globally is an obvious catalyst spurring requests for modification of court orders.

A recent article discusses COVID-19 and its effects on spousal support orders in Michigan. It notes foremost that, “Current orders remain in place, and arrears will accrue based on the amount ordered.”

That doesn’t mean that things absolutely cannot change based on significant life changes. A payor and recipient can mutually reach agreement on a new arrangement and submit the particulars to a court for review. Alternatively, and in the event that agreement cannot be secured, a party can seek change via a judicially filed motion.

Both payors and payees might reasonably have questions or concerns regarding a current order and the possibility of its revision. They can contact a proven family law legal team for guidance.