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David R. Hartwig, Esq.
Family Law & Divorce Attorney & Counselor at Law Veteran Military Discount

Can Child Support Be Changed?

My name is David R. Hartwig, and I am a child support modification lawyer located in Salt Lake City with more than 30 years of experience practicing law. Over the course of my legal career, I have assisted many parents with child support modifications, including support reductions and requests for additional support. I strive to meet all of my clients' child support needs. I also handle child support modifications and enforcement of support orders, which may be necessary to resolve ongoing support issues.

Understanding The Child Support Modification Process In Utah

One of the primary responsibilities of lawyers is to help clients determine if they realistically qualify for a child support modification, either by motion or petition. The grounds to modify a support order by motion are:

  • There is a difference of 10 percent or more between the support amount as ordered and the support amount as required under Utah's child support guidelines
  • It has been three or more years since the order was entered
  • Change in income is not temporary
  • The proposed child support amount is consistent with the guidelines

A petition to modify child support must be filed. If fewer than three years have passed since the original support order was entered, there must have also been a material change in one of the following areas for a modification to be granted:

  • Custody
  • The relative wealth or assets of the parties
  • A change of 30 percent or more in the child custody agreement
  • Employment potential and ability of a parent to earn
  • Medical needs of the child
  • Legal responsibilities of a parent for the support of others
  • Availability or cost of health care coverage
  • Work-related or education-related child care expenses of the payer or payee
  • Emancipation of a child

I look at a child's needs and a parent's income to accurately determine how a child support modification may apply in a given situation. On behalf of many clients, I have achieved support arrangements that better reflect the financial and family dynamics of the parties involved.

Cases Involving Multiple States Or Jurisdictions

I have helped parents modify child support orders in cases where the controlling order was entered in a state other than Utah, and I have facilitated support modifications in cases where a child or parent moved to another state or country. I understand the application of complicated jurisdictional laws, such as the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA), and can ably assist clients in parent and child relocation matters. I am also one of the few Utah child support modification attorneys who is a Special Master, which means I am especially qualified to handle high-conflict situations. Special Master certification requires extra training in conflict resolution, and courts will sometimes call on Special Masters to resolve difficult situations. In addition, I help clients in modification and enforcement of the support orders.

Get Help When Circumstances Change

If you need the assistance of a divorce modification lawyer, please contact me, David R. Hartwig, Esq., for a consultation. Not only will I help you determine whether you are eligible for a child support modification, but also explore every option to achieve a support arrangement that accommodates your child's needs and your income.

I am David R. Hartwig, Esq., a Salt Lake City attorney with extensive experience helping parents resolve simple or high-conflict custody issues reaching arrangements that work for children and parents. Child custody involves parent-time and visitation schedules, and can affect support. I help in all of these areas, providing comprehensive service clients need to achieve their custody goals.

Factors In Child Custody Decisions

As an experienced Utah child custody lawyer, I understand that custody cases may become a contentious issue even years after an order is finalized. The trend in Utah toward joint custody often creates messy, unworkable situations, which ultimately lead to enforcement issues when parents do not abide by their custody orders.

The best interests of the child must be considered, including:

• Whether joint legal or physical custody will benefit the child's physical, psychological and emotional needs, or the child's development

• The parents' ability to give first priority to the child's welfare, and reach shared decisions in the child's best interest

• Whether each parent is capable of encouraging and accepting a positive relationship between the child and the other parent

• Whether both parents participated in raising the child before the divorce

• The distance between the parents' homes

• The parents' maturity and their willingness and ability to protect the child from conflict that may arise between the parents

• The parents' ability to cooperate with each other and make decisions jointly

• Any history of, or potential for, child abuse, spouse abuse, or kidnapping

• Any other factors the court finds relevant

Despite the complicated and sensitive nature of custody matters, I have helped many clients successfully establish custody orders.

Get Help With Your Child Custody Issue

If you have a child custody issue, please contact me, David R. Hartwig, Esq. I am an experienced Salt Lake City custody lawyer dedicated to helping clients resolve complex custody issues and implement necessary custody orders. For high-conflict cases, I am also one of the few Utah child custody modification attorneys trained as a Special Master for ongoing dispute resolution.


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