Requesting a Modification to Your Divorce Judgment: What the Process Involves

Divorce can significantly change your life. If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the divorce, you should get help from your lawyer. Many issues in a divorce such as child support, child custody, spousal support, and parenting time can be modified when circumstances change. Whether you have become jobless and cannot pay the agreed-upon spousal support or want to request a change in parenting time, your attorney can help you. 

Appealing or Modifying a Divorce Judgment

To change your divorce judgment’s terms, you can file an appeal and request a modification. Sometimes, you can appeal your final divorce judgment. But you should be mindful of the 21-day timeframe. To appeal a divorce judgment, you should file a brief that argues the trial court did not apply the law correctly, leading to the invalidity of the judgment. This can be hard to do, so you must have a skilled lawyer helping you with this.

You may have a better chance of successfully requesting a modification to our divorce rather than appealing. Modifications to post-divorce judgments can be done over different circumstances and your lawyer can walk you through this process.

Common Kinds of Divorce Judgment Modifications

In Michigan, modifications to child custody, parenting time, child support, and spousal support are possible. Such modifications may be necessary due to significant changes in circumstances such as unemployment, pay cut, pay raise, custody arrangement changes, and increased or decreased childcare expenses. 

Each party can request a modification. For instance, the spouse that pays spousal support can ask a judge to lower their payments while the receiving spouse can ask to increase their payments. 

What to Expect If You Want to Modify a Divorce Judgment

If both parties agree on the modifications that must be made to the divorce judgment, they can work together to make a revised agreement. Such a modified agreement should be submitted to the family court for approval. Once the court approves it, the agreement goes into effect right away. 

If your spouse does not agree to the modifications, you should file a motion with the court to modify the agreement. The court will schedule a hearing after you file a petition. During the hearing, you should present evidence that proves a significant change has happened that necessitates a modification to the divorce judgment. The judge will review the proposed modification and make a determination. If the modification is approved, it will go into effect right away. 

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