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Lutins & Pilgreen, PC - Family, Criminal law
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How your new job can affect child support and custody

After divorce, life moves forward. You will want to seek new prospects in love or your career. A new job or reassignment could offer an exciting opportunity, but it’s important to consider how it might affect child support, custody and visitation.

Your new position could require you to move to a new state or country. Before you can relocate, you must tell the other parent that you intend to move as well as where you generally plan to live at least thirty days before moving, according to Virginia law.

The other parent could reject your decision, which might force you to take the conflict to court. A judge would then decide what is best for your child, which could change your custody agreement.

Often when two guardians live far apart, a judge grants physical custody to only one. This means that the child mainly resides with one parent, even if both have visitation and make parental decisions. Physical custody can help your child maintain a "normal" life in terms of attending school and being near friends.

Child support might also change as a result of your new job. This particularly applies to jobs that pay significantly more or less than the previous occupation. When the income of a parent who pays child support decreases, it might affect how much they are able to provide.

If your income can no longer fairly match your child support agreement, you should speak with your lawyer about proposing modifications to the existing plan. Once a child support arrangement is in place, it’s not easy to persuade a judge to change it. Even so, new employment could be a valid reason to modify the agreement if you and your attorney present a sound argument. 

J. Emmette Pilgreen IV
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