As life moves forward for a divorced parent in Washington, a new partner might enter their life, and they eventually choose to remarry. Since the situation has changed, they might wonder if entering a new marriage will result in modifications to the child support order in place. The simple answer is that remarrying alone will not be enough reason for a modification. However, some factors related to a new marriage might be considered by the court if a parent seeks a change to the support order.
A new marriage is not a reason to modify a child support order
When a parent enters a new marriage, they continue to be responsible for the financial support of their child from a previous marriage. In some cases, the new spouse’s earnings might put the joint income of the parent and the new spouse into a higher earning bracket. Whether that parent is the custodial or non-custodial parent, their new spouse’s income cannot be used to determine child support. The amount of support will also not be impacted if the parent and their new spouse choose to have more children.
Some factors that can be considered for a support modification
A change in child support amount might be considered if other things besides remarriage happen. These include:
• A significant change in a parent’s income
• A modification in the child custody order, impacting the time the child spends with each parent
• A major change in household expenses, including additional costs for health insurance and childcare for a new child
Even if a parent’s situation changes, they must continue to meet their child support responsibilities until a modification to the support order is in place. Falling behind or failing to continue with payments can have legal repercussions.