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Remarriage, additional children and current child support orders

| Feb 15, 2021 | Arlington Family Law Blog |

Out of 1000 marriages, around 15 will end in divorce. While this rate is not as high as it once was, it still allows plenty of opportunities for unique family dynamics to arise. It is not uncommon for someone to remarry after a divorce, for example, and have additional children with his or her new spouse.

For those who have current child support orders from a previous marriage, they may wonder how the addition of more family members will affect the order and their ability to pay.

Remarriage alone does not affect a child support order

According to FindLaw, there are very specific situations where someone may request to modify a current child support order. Virginia laws allow parents to request a modification if their income changes, for example, or a change of custody occurs. The law does not list remarriage as one of the reasons, however, and does not consider a new spouse’s income while determining the ability to pay or the right to receive child support.

Additional children may lower the child support obligation

The law does make allowances for those who have additional children to modify their current child support order. According to § 20-108.1 of the Code of Virginia, the courts consider someone’s ability to support all of their children, not just those from a previous marriage. If this were not the case, a parent would not be able to provide the same level of care to all his or her children because the oldest would always receive the most monetary support.

For those who are struggling to support all their children, it may be a good idea to seek a child support modification.