Can the amount being paid in a child support order be changed?
If your child support order is being enforced by the state government child support agency, the order will most likely be reviewed by the child support agency every three years. If, upon review, the child support agency determines that the order provides for child support payments in an amount that is inconsistent with the amount that would be required by the child support guidelines, the child support agency has the option to seek an amendment of the order. However, if the child support payments are less than eighty-five percent of the guidelines amount (or more than one hundred fifteen percent of the guidelines amount), the child support agency is required to seek an amendment of the order.1
Aside from the child support agency’s review that generally takes place every three years, a parent paying child support or a parent receiving child support can file to amend the order so that it matches the child support guidelines. However, if the petition for an amendment is filed within one year of when the most recent order was entered, the party seeking the amendment must show a substantial (material) change of circumstances.2
1 N.D.C.C. § 14-09-08.4(1), (3)
2 N.D.C.C. § 14-09-08.4(4)