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Common Examples of Divorce Decree Modifications

Whether you negotiated a divorce settlement or had the terms of your divorce mandated by a judge, the terms in your divorce agreement were designed to fit your life as it was at the time of the divorce. As time goes on, however, your life is bound to change — and sometimes drastically.

When these major life changes occur, it’s important to revisit the terms of your divorce and determine if any changes should be made to accommodate your changing circumstances. Below are a few common reasons why you may wish to seek a divorce decree modification:

  • Changes to child support: If either spouse has had a significant change in income, it is important to make adjustments to child support. A person paying support who suddenly loses his or her job, for example, may not have to continue paying support in the same amount. Someone who sees a sudden increase in income may be able to pay more or, when that person is the recipient spouse, may not need to receive as much support.
  • Changes to child custody and/or parenting time: One or both parents may request custody modifications at any time. For example, if one parent wants to move, it could have significant implications for any existing parenting time arrangement. Other examples would be if a parent suspects abuse on the part of the other parent, or if one parent is not meeting his or her visitation requirements.
  • Changes to spousal maintenance: Spousal maintenance payments (sometimes referred to as alimony), unlike child support payments, are not guaranteed. If the spouse receiving spousal maintenance gets remarried, he or she will no longer be eligible for spousal maintenance payments, which means it’s necessary to modify the divorce decree. The financial circumstances of the parties could also significantly change, which may necessitate changes to the amount and duration of payments.

These are just a few examples of situations in which you might seek a modification to your divorce decree. To learn more about your options, speak with a skilled Minnesota divorce attorney at Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.

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