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Can divorce agreements be modified in Georgia?

When you and your spouse initially divorced, you may have reached agreements regarding custody of your children, visitation rights and child support payments.

These agreements may have accurately reflected your situation at the time. However, that does not mean it still appropriate for your current situation. Georgia allows people to request a post-divorce order modification when their lives change.

Understanding Georgias divorce modification rules

Georgia has specific rules that courts follow when determining whether to grant a post-divorce order modification.

  • Custody rights: Courts will only review a child custody agreement if there has been a significant change in your family’s circumstances. A significant change in circumstances includes the relocation of a parent, one spouse remarrying, substance abuse or a spouse’s criminal activity.
  • Visitation rights: Every two years, you can request a family law court to review your current parent visitation rights. Courts may modify visitation rights even without a significant change in circumstances.
  • Child support: The court largely bases the initial child support calculation on the income levels of both spouses. If those income levels have significantly changed, you may be able to have your child support payments reduced. It is important to note that the process of modifying child support payments can last up to six months.

When does it make sense to request a modification?

In addition to a significant change in circumstances, one of the most common reasons people may want to request a post-divorce order modification is due to a change in income.

For example, you may be responsible for paying child support. If you have experienced reduced earnings, you may be able to reduce future child support payments that you owe.

Other reasons that may prompt a request for modification include conflicts in the custodial home or if the underlying needs of your child have changed.

Successfully achieving a post-divorce order modification can be challenging. To put you in a better position for a successful outcome, it can be beneficial to speak with an experienced attorney who has a comprehensive understanding of divorce modifications.