As many Washington parents have experienced, any number of life changes may occur after a divorce that affect a parent's ability to adhere to the terms of an existing court order. For instance, a parent paying child support might have a change in income that makes his or her current payments no longer feasible. Now-retired NBA star Matt Barnes was recently successful in asking the court to grant him modification of the current financial supplements he provides for his children.
Barnes had been paying $20,000 per month in financial support of the two sons he shares with his former spouse. However, he told the court that since he has retired from the NBA, he can no longer afford to pay what he considers an exorbitant amount of money. He asked the judge overseeing his case to lower his payments to $7,500 per month.
Barnes recently welcomed another son into the world with a different woman. Being a divorced parent who enters a new relationship that includes step-children or leads to the birth of additional biological children is another major life event that can affect one's ability to keep up with child support payments. The judge in Barnes's case approved his request for lower payments, which some say the mother of the two sons in question is not happy about.
In Washington and all other states, such issues are decided on a case-by-case basis. A judge may review two cases with similar requests for child support modification and grant approval in one while denying the other. In all such cases, the court has children's best interests in mind. If a parent is currently facing custody, visitation or support problems, he or she can reach out for legal support at any time.