Does Child Support Stop in New York When You Get Re-Married?

By Heather Frances J.D.

When you divorce, a New York court likely will order child support as part of your divorce decree. The amount awarded is a percentage of your and your spouse's combined income, based on the number of children who need support. Unlike alimony or custody, child support is not likely to change if you remarry unless your income changes.

Support Obligations

Parents are legally obligated to provide support for their biological children until the child reaches adulthood or is emancipated. Since remarriage doesn’t sever the legal bond between parent and child, remarriage does not terminate a parent’s support obligation. Further, spouses do not have a legal obligation to support their stepchildren, so your new spouse does not have to provide support to children from your prior marriage.

Income Changes

In New York, child support amounts will only change if there has been a significant increase or decrease in a parent’s income or other significant change in circumstances, so remarriage, by itself, typically has no effect on child support. However, if your remarriage also brings with it a job change for you with a significant change in income, you might be eligible to have your child support amount changed.

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Imputed Income

New York courts don’t just look at the income you actually earn. If your income appears unreasonably low, they may impute income to you, calculating your support obligation as if you actually earned more income than you reported. Thus, if you choose to stop working because you remarried, the court may calculate your child support obligation as if you still earned an income.

Modification

If you believe your child support amount should change, you must file a modification petition in New York Family Court. Child support does not change automatically. Under a law passed in 2010, a parent can request a modification if at least three years have passed since the last child support order was issued or if one parent’s income has changed by at least 15 percent.

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Does Child Support Go Down if You Have Another Child?

References

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Virginia Law on Modification of Final Divorce Decrees

In Virginia, ex-spouses may modify spousal support, child support or custody if circumstances have changed since the time of divorce. The procedure for changing any part of the divorce decree begins with filing a petition with the court and stating your reasons why you think the existing order should be changed. The court may then schedule a hearing, allowing both former spouses to provide their side of the story.

How to Change Child Support When a Child Comes of Age in Texas

Whether your child support order was part of a divorce decree or entered separately, child support doesn’t go on forever. In Texas, certain circumstances terminate your requirement to pay child support even if your child support order doesn’t mention a termination date. Since support payments are typically withheld from your wages, you may need to act to ensure the support payments terminate when they are supposed to.

Can Child Support Go Up When a Spouse Makes More Money in California?

Child support orders are not permanent, but instead adaptable to particular changes of circumstance. In California, the modification process begins with a petition to the court and the judge will look to whether a material change in circumstances has occurred, with enhanced wealth typically qualifying as such a change. However, it is important to understand that increased income is only one factor of many the court will take into consideration when determining whether or not to increase support.

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