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Understanding the process for a child support hearing

If you are a parent in Michigan who pays or receives child support, at some point you might need to ask for a modification of the order. To do so correctly, you should understand when and if a child support order review can be requested.

When can a child support order review happen?

There are several paths that lead to a child support review. Some are automatic and others are the result of either a motion filed by a parent due to changed circumstances or a court-ordered review. If you receive public assistance, for example, there is an automatic review of the order every 36 months. Either parent, whether they receive or pay support, can request a review of the support order. However, this is limited to once every 36 months, depending on the date of the last review. The court itself can also initiate a review if there are issues of concern.

How should you prepare for a child support review?

If you are involved in a child support order review, you need to cooperate and gather the documentation required for the review to proceed. This might include:

  • Documentation related to either parent losing their job or getting a pay raise
  • Supporting evidence of any increased costs to meet the child’s needs
  • Evidence of a changed child custody situation
  • Proof of a child’s 18th birthday

You can file a petition to modify the support order due to a significant change in your or the other parent’s situation. You and the other parent can also negotiate a support amount that is different from the one the court would award using the state formula. If you both agree, you can submit a Uniform Child Support Order to the Friend of the Court for review and approval. You might receive approval of this order if you meet the conditions established by the court.