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Child support in Illinois is legally binding. When a judge orders one parent to pay it as a result of divorce, they must do so. That does not mean, however, that you are stuck with a high payment that you might not always be able to afford. The law in Illinois recognizes that situations change and as such, either parent can petition the court to have their child support payments modified. The steps for doing so are outlined below.
It is not a requirement that you have legal representation to modify child support payments. If you represent yourself, you will not have anyone to guide you through the legal system. The staff in the courtroom also cannot give legal advice, or tell you of the chances of a successful outcome. It is in your best interest to speak to an attorney any time you have to go to court.
There are many forms you will need to complete. These include:
You can file these forms online or in person at the courthouse. There will also be fees attached and, unless you include a fee waiver, your petition may be rejected. Before filing, take at least three copies of each document.
You are required to tell the other parent that you petitioned the court to have child support modified. Mail a copy of the Petition to them, file a Certificate of Mailing Petition for Modification of Child Support with the court, and mail a copy of the Certificate of Mailing. If the other parent agrees to the terms of the Petition, they can sign the Entry of Appearance, Waiver, and Consent. This signature must be notarized.
If you filed online, you may have the option to choose your hearing date electronically. If you filed your documents at the courthouse, the clerk may give you a date, or allow you to choose one yourself.
An attorney is also helpful when preparing you for the hearing. They will help you prepare for testifying, and change anything on your Petition before the hearing if required. An attorney will also help you navigate the court system, from the small details such as finding the right courtroom, to the larger ones like arguing your case in front of the judge.
If you need to change your child support situation, call our skilled Hinsdale family lawyers at the Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio. This process does not have to be long, but it can be quite detailed and one mistake could ruin your chances. Our attorneys will ensure everything is filed properly and promptly and help you in the many steps involved along the way. Call us today at 630-920-8855 for your free consultation.