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What to Know About Getting Child Support Payments Reduced in Minnesota

Are you a parent of young children? If you are divorced or otherwise separated, child support may be a legal issue that you need to address. The Minnesota Department of Human Services explains that “every child has the right to support from both parents.” There are strong enforcement mechanisms in Minnesota that allow for the collection of delinquent child support.

This raises an important question: Can you get child support payments reduced? In Minnesota, the answer is “yes”—but only in certain circumstances. The obligor (parent who pays) will generally need to prove a substantial change in circumstances. Here, our Mankato child support lawyers explain the key things that you should know about getting a child support reduction in Minnesota. 

A Child Support Order/Agreement is Subject to Modification in Minnesota

Do you have a child support order or a child support agreement in place in Minnesota? If you are the parent paying child support, then your obligation is always subject to modification. In Minnesota, a court will set child support “based on family circumstances and information from both parents.” Of course, the family situation—including the financial resources of the parents are not necessarily static. Things can change. In Minnesota, a child support order or child support agreement can change as well—either a reduction or an increase—based on changing circumstances. Some examples of changes in circumstances that may be deemed material and substantial include: 

  • Unemployment; 
  • Underemployment; 
  • Loss of income of financial resources; and 
  • Disability or other adverse health effects. 

What to Know About Filing a Motion to Modify Child Support in Minnesota (Reductions)

Was your child support payment imposed through a court order? If so, then only a court has the power to change your obligations. Parents technically cannot modify court-ordered child support on their own in Minnesota. Instead, one (or both) of the parents must petition the court for a child support modification. A legal motion to modify a child support order in Minnesota must be properly served and filed with the appropriate court. 

Minnesota courts have the power to either approve or deny a motion to modify a child support order. Whether or not a court will opt to do so depends entirely on the specific facts of the case, including the nature of the change in circumstances and whether or not the request change (reduction) is warranted based on equity ground and/or the obligor’s good faith inability to pay. A Minnesota child support attorney can help you navigate your modification case. 

Contact Our Mankato & Rochester Child Support Attorneys Today

At Kohlmeyer Hagen, Law Office Chtd., our Mankato & Rochester child support lawyers are skilled and solutions-oriented advocates for our clients. If you have any questions about a child support reduction case, we are here to protect your financial interests. Contact our family law firm now to set up your strictly private, no obligation initial consultation. From our offices in Rochester and Mankato, we represent parents in child support cases throughout all of Southern Minnesota.