How can I eliminate or reduce my child support?

I pay child support on my middle daughter. My sister-in-law has her in TX. I asked to watch her while I got some things straight in SC where I lived at the time. When I went to go pick her up she had custody paperwork done. I went to the court cases until I couldn’t afford to travel anymore. She was awarded custody by default. I wanted, and still, want my daughter back. I pay $400 each month leaving me with only $650 to pay rent and care for my youngest child. Even with a roommate I can’t afford to care for my youngest. I need help reducing or completing getting rid of my child support.

Asked on December 29, 2010 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You won't be able to eliminate child support, but may be able to have it reduced.  Changed circumstances such as reduced income is a basis for a modification of child support.  You should file an Order to Show Cause (court form) with the court requesting a modification of child support.  With the Order to Show Cause, you should also file an Application for Order and Supporting Declaration.  In the Declaration, you would state your reasons for seeking a modification of child support signed under penalty of perjury.  When you file the Order to Show Cause, the court will set a date for a hearing.  You will need to have these documents served on the other parties (your ex and also the sister-in-law).  You can attach a court form proof of service or you can write your own proof of service.  If you write your own proof of service, it just says that you are over 18 and the attached documents were sent via first class mail unless otherwise specified to ________ (name and address of each opposing party) on ________ (date).  The date you sign the proof of service under penalty of perjury, should be the same as the date it is mailed and the same as the date it is filed with the court.

You might want to contact the court clerk in TX in case your state has different names for the court forms I have mentioned.

If the cost of transportation to the hearing is a problem, you could contact the law clerk for the judge assigned to your case to inquire if the hearing can be by telephone instead of you having to be physically present.  Some judges will allow having the hearing by telephone.


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