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Modifying a child support agreement in times of need

Minnesota law is quite liberal when it comes to child support, even though it may not seem so at times. This is because, at the heart of the law, there is a desire for kids to have the economic support they need to develop into healthy members of society. However, the court also takes the needs of the parents into consideration.

It is not uncommon for a divorced parent to experience a change in financial and economic status after a marriage ends. These changes are not always for the better. If an individual were to fall on hard times, there could be a way to keep up with child support obligations and other responsibilities without lapsing on one or the other. 

The Research Department of the Minnesota House of Representatives provides a useful, if somewhat outdated at this point, guide to child support agreements online. It is a good place to start for those who are interested in understanding how courts write, maintain and modify support documents.

For more in-depth queries, the Office of the Revisor of Statutes provides a copy of the law, section 518A.39 of the statute on domestic relations, listing eight specific cases in which a court might modify a child support agreement. These situations cover increased expenses and decreased earnings. 

Interested parties would do well to keep abreast of the changes in this section of the law. Significant changes occurred both in the 2016 and 2018 legislative sessions, according to the Revisor of Statutes website. These changes have not rendered the guide from 2015 completely obsolete, but the alterations could prove significant in some cases.

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