Child Support and Maintenance Obligations During the COVID-19 Pandemic

March 26th, 2020 by

As if you don’t have enough to worry about during this pandemic, you may have recently lost your job, declared non-essential, laid off, or maybe your hours were reduced. In any case, you may find that your income is going down. Shouldn’t your obligation for child support and/or maintenance also go down, since you are making less money so it’s reasonable that you should pay less support, right? Not so fast.

At Sterk Family Law Group, we are the firm that anticipates your changing needs and responds to your changing questions during this difficult time.

Modification is not automatic

Child support and maintenance may be modified at any time, but a substantial change in circumstances must be demonstrated in order for the support order to be modified. If you file a petition to modify a support order based upon a substantial change in circumstances, the support order in question can be modified retroactively to the filing of the petition, but can NOT have an earlier effective date.

Wait, what? Yes, only the Court can change your support obligation. A modification will not be automatic and will not take effect when you lose your job. Additionally, the Court cannot go back to the date your circumstances changed, only back to the date you filed your petition to modify.

At Sterk Family Law Group, we understand the emergent nature of these times and the toll they are having on our clients. 

You must file a proper petition with the proper Court, at the proper time, to seek a modification of your support order. There are statutes under which the Court operates, and which the Court will apply to your unique circumstances. In addition to filing the proper pleading, you must properly notify the other party of your intention to bring your petition before the Court. Once you have filed your petition and notified the other party, you will be given a hearing date with the Court.

At Sterk Family Law we can take care of the preparation and filing of your petition, notification of the other party, and prepare you for your hearing date with the Court.

We are here to assist you

Whether you are a current client or if you are looking for family law or estate planning assistance, our team is here for you and will continue to be available to address your concerns.

To the extent possible, we will offer remote consultations and provide services from a distance.

You may message us here, email our office at, or call 815-600-8950 and one of our team members will be able to assist you.

This is a legal advertisement from Sterk Family Law Group. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be construed as such. This article is for informational and educational purposes only.



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