Do I Have to Pay Child Support if I Lost my Job in New York?

The purpose of child support is to ensure that the child’s standard of living is the same as, or better than, before the divorce. As a result, child support is taken seriously in New York, and failing to make payments can result in legal trouble. If you have lost your job, you may be unable to make your court-ordered payments. It is important to know that you cannot stop making child support payments until the court states otherwise. However, you may be able to modify the amount and/or frequency of payments. Read on to learn more.

How is child support determined?

When determining child support, there are a number of factors the court will examine. Some of these factors include:

  • Your child’s age
  • Whether your child has any special needs
  • Whether your child will attend college or pursue higher education
  • Your yearly income
  • The child custody agreement in place
  • The number of children you have

How do I modify child support?

If you have lost your job, you may need to request a child support modification. In order to modify the amount/frequency of your payments, you will need to prove that a substantial change has occurred. Some examples of this include:

  • An increase or decrease in yearly income
  • A significant change in a spouse’s health, causing a spike in medical bills
  • The loss of a home
  • A change in the federal tax law
  • One of the parents lost their job
  • One of the spouses remarried

To provide this proof, it is important to work with an experienced attorney.

What if I don’t pay child support?

While it can become difficult to pay child support, it is important to continue doing so. Failing to pay court-ordered child support can result in legal trouble, including:

  • Wage garnishment: A New York judge can order your employer to take a portion of your paycheck and pay it directly to your child’s other parent
  • Property liens: A judge can order some of your property to be seized until payments are made. 
  • Suspension of drivers’ licenses: Your license may be suspended until payments are made.
  • Imprisonment: You may be imprisoned until payments are made.

If you have any questions or concerns about child support modifications, our firm is here to help.

Contact our Firm

The Law Office of Peter L. Jameson, PLLC understands the harsh implications of relocation can have on a child and his or her parents. When you have a contested relocation matter, it is important to have an experienced attorney to represent you in court. If you are faced with a relocation matter in Rockland County, contact The Law Office of Peter L. Jameson, PLLC today to schedule a consultation.