After a dispute over child support payments, Levar Dawson pointed a semi-automatic handgun at his two children and threatened to kill them. The Pompano Beach father eventually left the scene without firing the weapon, but was later picked up by police and jailed on a $180,200 bond.
Oftentimes, financial situations can take an unexpected turn for the worse, making alimony or child support payments an overwhelming burden. However, there is hope for spouses or parents stuck with unbearable payments.
How you can change your financial obligations
If you’ve been ordered to pay alimony, you can appeal the decision, but you must file the appeal within 30 days of the final judgment. The appeal cannot be based simply on unhappiness with the outcome. However, the decision may be overturned if the trial judge made an error of law or abused judicial discretion.
Further, the court can modify certain alimony orders. If the judge finds a substantial change in the circumstances of the parties, the court may modify an order for alimony. However, lump sum and bridge-the-gap alimony cannot be modified by the court.
A court can also modify an order for child support. Child support is based on the income of both parents and the specific needs of the child. If the judge finds a substantial change in the circumstances of the parents, or a change in circumstances related to the best interests of the child, the child support order may be modified. For example, if a support order initially indicated specific medical treatments for a condition in which the child has since recovered, the child support order may be modified to reflect this change.
If you need to modify an alimony or child support order, don’t do it alone. An experienced attorney can help guide you through the process and guard your financial interests.