In Virginia, child support modifications are possible

On behalf of Jarrell, Hicks & Waldman, PC posted in Child Support on Friday, August 10, 2012.

Randy Jackson, the brother of Michael Jackson, is a father who is delinquent on his child support payments. For help with his payments, he is currently challenging the distribution of Michael's estate. The fight over Michael Jackson's estate has important lessons for Virginians with delinquent child support payments. The Jackson drama highlights the useful tool of support modification. Modification provides a parent who is unable to make support payments with the opportunity to make changes to their child support obligations if unexpected conditions significantly reduce their income.

Randy, like many people in Virginia, is facing financial troubles and is unable to make his child support payments. He owes nearly $500,000 in child support to the mother of his two children. In light of this delinquency, Randy seeks help from his brother Michael's estate. Since Michael died in 2009, his estate has gained $475 million in gross revenue, but Randy is not named as a beneficiary in his brother's will. This issue along with many others has caused Randy and other family members to challenge the validity of Michael Jackson's will.

As the fight over Michael's estate continues, it is unclear how Randy will proceed in addressing the problem of his delinquent child support payments. If the issue was to be resolved in Virginia, however, one remedy that could be available to Randy would be support modification. Instead of seeking financial support from his brother's estate, Randy could seek help from the Virginia court system.

In Virg inia, child support payments are determined by court order. At times, it may become difficult for a paying parent to follow the original court order and make required payments. This difficulty may stem from job loss, injury, or other reasons. The Virginia Child Support Guidelines may offer a solution -- support modification. A paying parent can return to court and petition a judge to change the original child support order in light of unforeseen financial circumstances. The judge can ultimately order a reduction in payments so that the support payments are more manageable.

Support modification is a helpful solution for a paying parent like Randy, who is faced with financial uncertainties. It offers flexibility for child support payments before they become overdue or delinquent.

Source: International Business Times, "Randy Jackson Owes $500,000 In Child Support, Denied Access To Michael's Will: Report," Jeff Stone, Aug. 1, 2012

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