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How does SSDI impact child support?

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Quick Answer

When a parent who pays child support begins to receive social security disability insurance payments, he may be eligible for modification of his child support requirement, according to Nolo. This is especially true if the amount of his SSDI payment is substantially lower than his previous income. When a parent receives SSDI, the child sometimes becomes eligible for dependent's benefits. In some cases, the court may lower the child support obligation by the amount the child receives from these benefits.

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Full Answer

Rules regarding child support modification vary from state to state, advises Nolo. Courts can garnish child support from SSDI benefits, and it is important for parents receiving SSDI to request a hearing for modification as soon as possible and continue making child support payments while waiting to see a judge. A failure to make court-ordered payments while awaiting a hearing can result in arrest and jail time, even if the parent lives in a different state.

If waiting for a hearing presents a hardship for the parent who is responsible for support payments, it may be useful to discuss the change in circumstances and income with the child's other parent. If the parents are able to come to an agreement regarding payment modification, the judge is likely to approve it, saving both parents time and legal costs, states Nolo.

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