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Whether your divorce is difficult or relatively easy, it is always a relief to finally get your divorce order from the courts, and finally be done with it. While an original divorce agreement will likely establish the terms for quite some time going forward, there are situations where it will be necessary to make adjustments. Fortunately, modifying your original divorce agreement is not nearly as difficult as getting through the divorce in the first place, but you must have the necessary grounds to request a modification which include a substantial, permanent and unforeseen change in circumstances.
Read through several key situations where it may be necessary to have your original divorce agreement modified so you can be prepared should you face any of them.
Children Getting Older
One of the most common reasons for needing to have a divorce agreement modified is that children are growing up and their needs are changing. If you got a divorce while the children were too little for school, for example, it will likely become necessary to make changes to the parenting expenses and time schedules to accommodate the schooling. Adding in after-school activities like clubs, sports, and homework can also necessitate a change in the order.
One Party is Moving
If you or your spouse has to move a long distance away, it will be necessary to have the order adjusted. When both parents live relatively close together, having the child go back and forth is fairly easy. When the distance is more than about 25-30 miles, however, it needs to be factored in to ensure both parents can have as strong of a relationship as possible with the kids.
Significant Change in Income
A significant change in income for either party often makes it appropriate to have a divorce agreement modified. If you lose your job, for example, you may no longer need to pay the same level of child support as when you were working. Likewise, if your spouse gets a significant increase in pay, they may have to pay more child support, or you might not have to pay as much. There are calculations used to determine how much support should be paid, so speak with your attorney to see if the change in income for your situation should trigger a change in your divorce agreement.
In the event that either parent experiences a serious health problem, it could require a change to the agreement. If, for example, one of the parents is diagnosed with a terminal illness, the courts are likely to grant them additional time with the child to help strengthen the relationship during this difficult time. In other cases, if a parent becomes unable to properly provide care due to an illness, the courts may factor that into a new parenting time arrangement.
Get Help with a Divorce Agreement Modification
If you are facing any of these situations, or you believe you have another event that may require a change to your divorce agreement, we are here to help. Whether we helped you with your original divorce or not, we want to be there for you for this important modification. Contact the Vasquez de Lara Law Group [Link to CONTACT US page] to discuss your situation, and how we can help you.
In Florida, when a loved one requires a legal guardian to help take care of them and make decisions on their behalf, the courts can appoint someone to take on this role. A court-appointed guardian can be for either a minor whose parents are unable to provide the care they need, or for an adult who has some type of disability where they cannot care for themselves.
Once you’ve been named the legal guardian, you will have new rights and responsibilities that you need to be aware of. If you neglect these responsibilities, you can be in legal trouble, so that is why you should always consult with your attorney.
Decisions Regarding Housing
In most situations, you will be responsible for making decisions regarding where your ward will live. This may typically mean that they will stay in your home so you can provide them with care, especially if they are minor children. Many disabled adults, however, are able to live somewhat independent lives, so they may have an apartment or home of their own. If this is the case, you would be there to help them find a home and ensure you are able to help them along the way.
Making medical decisions is one of the biggest responsibilities of a guardian—these may be day-to-day decisions like which doctor to see, or major medical decisions in the event of an emergency. In addition to traditional medical decisions, you’ll also have to make decisions surrounding things like therapists, dental work, vision care, and more.
Helping with paying the bills is a common responsibility for guardians, especially when the ward is an adult. In most cases, you do not have to use your own money to pay these types of bills. The guardian establishes a court restricted depository account which allows the court to approve expenses of the ward. Instead, you’ll use any money that your ward has to pay their bills (if they are an adult). It is absolutely critical to note, however, that their money must only be used for things related to them. If you dip into their money for personal things, you are violating your responsibilities.
If the person you are caring for has financial assets, possibly left to them by their biological parents, you will need to help manage these investments. This can be as simple as hiring a financial advisor, or you may want to make the investment decisions on your own. Regardless of your approach, you must always make your decisions with the best interests of your ward in mind.
Filing Reports with the Court
One responsibility that many people don’t realize as a guardian is filing annual reports with the courts. These reports should provide a general overview of how your ward is doing, and what you’re doing for them. This helps to ensure they are getting the care they need as the years progress.
We Can Help You with Your Guardianship
If you have a loved one who is unable to care for themselves, and you would like to seek legal guardianship, please contact us right away. We’ll sit down with you, go over the details of your case, and help you to determine what the next steps should be.
No, The payments are for back support which means that it is for child support that should have been paid while the children were minors, but was not paid. This means that she spent her money or went into debt while the children were minors in order to care for them because she was not receiving the ordered child support from you at the time. Since this is a debt owed to mom, it cannot be paid to your sons unless she agrees.
The problem with this issue becomes how to prove that the other parent was not allowing you to see the child. It quickly becomes a he said she said whether the child was abandoned. That being said, a divorce does not have to be filed in order to obtain time sharing so the parent not being allowed access has to request court assistance as soon as possible in order to short circuit the abandonment argument.
You may need to seek at least a consultation with a dependency attorney in your area that can better explain to you what your rights and responsibilities are while in the system,. Otherwise, you just have to keep calling the public defender and the advocate until you get answers. Or bring up the issues you are having to the judge and see if they assist you.
Changes to the order are not permitted unless both parents agree. That means if he wants less time your options are to a) agree, b) not agree and advise that he either takes whole weekend or no part of the weekend. But he can only return them early if you agree. Since this may create issues with your kids, it is possible that you may start denying him the shorter weekends in order not to be stuck having him return them early.
If your intent is to modify the schedule that he takes the children on or restrict his access based on his being homeless, you must file a Supplemental Petition for Modification of Time Sharing. This will allow you to indicate to the court what he substantial, unanticipated changes are that warrant a change in the time sharing schedule from the original Final Judgment.
You would need to file your own Petition for Modification of Final Judgment in order to modify the time sharing arrangement that you currently have and that new arrangement being taken into consideration with regards to child support. Without you filing for modification, the court will simply recalculate child support based on the current income of both parties, including income from her inheritance, and the time sharing as established in the final judgment.
The child support the is currently paying is pretty minimal, so I doubt he’ll be able to get it lowered. You should consult with Child Support Enforcement in your area though as they provide free legal services for child support cases.
Your attorney can hold your original will, the problem is that someone has to let the attorney know that you have passed away, You may need to consult with an attorney as there may be things you can do while alive that may prevent this issue from becoming a problem.