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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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  • "I first came to Ms. Jacquelyn Lutz of Appelhof, Pfeifer and Hart in October of 2016. It was definitely the worst time in my life and she compassionately spoke with me about my options. Ms. Lutz thoroughly explained the laws, statutes, process and what to expect going forward. What was supposed to be one case, turned into three intricate cases that took a huge toll on me and my family. Ms. Lutz represented me in court on all three cases with a vast knowledge of the laws and how to proceed accordingly. During all three cases she kept me informed, calm, gave me resources to utilize, and (most important) gave me a realistic view of what may come next. Ms. Lutz knew each case required a great deal of knowledge and creative thinking on how to legally proceed forward with each case. My family and friends are forever grateful for the amazing representation by Ms. Lutz. I highly recommend Ms. Lutz for anyone needing or considering superb representation for any kind of family law. " - M.H.

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