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Asking a Court to Modify (Change) Child Support in Louisiana

Here is basic information about asking a Louisiana state court to modify (change) child support. There is also a link to a computer program to create a form to ask a court to modify (change) child support.

Modifcation (Change) of Child Support In Louisiana

Introduction

This guide gives some general information about how to seek a change in child support. The law calls this "modification" of child support.

This guide does not tell you if you can ask for or should ask for a modification of child support. This guide does not say if the modification of child support form is right for your situation. If you are not sure if you should use this form or if you can use this form try to find a lawyer to help you.

There are programs that offer free legal help for low-income or other qualified people.  You can search for free legal help in your parish on http://www.louisianalawhelp.org/: http://louisianalawhelp.org/find-legal-help/directory/area

This guide is not legal advice. You can only get legal advice from a lawyer licensed to practice in your state who agrees to help you with your specific situation.

About Modification of Child Support

Modification of Child Support is the way a court can change the court order that says how much must be paid in child support.

The side asking the court to change the amount of child support must show a "material change in the circumstances of one of the parties between the time of the previous award and the rule for modification of the award." That means the person asking for child support to go up or go down must show that something happened to one side or the other that relates to how much should be paid to support the child or children. That person must also show that this situation happened since the last time the court made a decision on child support.

The form created by the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services has boxes to check for a person to list those things that may show a need for child support to go up or down.  There is also a place on the form to describe an event or situation not listed on the form.

Warning: you need a valid reason to seek a change in child support. Louisiana Revised Statutes 9:311 says: " If the court does not find good cause sufficient to justify an order to modify child support or the motion is dismissed prior to a hearing, it may order the mover to pay all court costs and reasonable attorney fees of the other party if the court determines the motion was frivolous." La. Rev. Stat. 9:311(E).

If you have a case that is being handled by DCFS/SES, you should have been assigned a case worker. You may want to contact your case worker to pursue the process. State and federal law requires DCFS/SES to assist you with the process even if you are the one paying the child support.