Change of Divorce Decree


If there is no current court order for child support it can be filed for at any time. From the sound of this post, child support was not filed for in exchange for no alimony per an agreement. If there is no court order then I would suggest that the father file with the courts for child support.

The child support calculator on the home site would be able to tell you what the amount of child support would be paid based on both parents incomes and the number of overnights the children stay with each parent along with some other factors. If the parents share joint custody with equal time and make the same amount of money is about the only time that child support is not paid by one parent to the other. I do not believe with the situation described below that the father can get child support for previous dates because of the agreement.

I should also mention that child support and custody/visitation issues are usually looked at as separate issues. One does normally affect the other but they are not usually discussed at the same hearing.
If the parents had a previous agreement for visitations and the mother never enforced the arrangement due to living out of state, the agreement is still valid unless custody has been modified.


And if the mother continues to not work and be supported by her present husband, then will she not ever have to pay child support or can it be awarded on a “potential income” basis that would require her to find a job?


I think that would depend on the reasons that she does not work. If she stays at home to take care of a small child, then the courts would not likely impute income.
If she does not work because she chooses not to work then the courts could imput minimum wage/40hrs, or base it on an earning potential for her and then use the guidelines.


Thanks stepmom for your imput. There are no small children because she left them with the father since she didn’t want to be a mom or wife any longer. She chooses not to work however the earning potential is probably very low (minimum wage). It is just hard to see that she has no responsibilities whatsoever for these children.


Then I suggest before he files for child support, he should file for primary custody. Given the length of time that he has already had primary custody it shouldn’t be difficult to show that though the agreement stated joint custody it really wasn’t joint. And that the situation should reflect that. I assume that the father is still going to have primary care with her having visitations…
You may want to have the paperwork checked again. Joint legal and joint physical custody can be two separate things. See if anything is mentioned about the father having primary physical custody. If it does then he should only need to file for support. If it does not specify then you may need to check with an attorney to see where the custody situation would stand.


Yes, you can pursue court ordered child support at any time. However, if you agreed to no child support in a contract the court will review and consider that contract when making its decision.

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The situation is that the mother left the state and left the children in the care of the father but has joint custody. During the divorce, the father agreed to not make the mother pay child support in return that she didn’t make him pay alimony. (The mother never worked.) The mother has remarried and returned to the state and now wants to enforce the visitation agreement. Is it possible to change the divorce agreement to require child support?