Child Support And Spousal Support Modifications:

Our Top-Ten List Of Considerations

Are you facing unemployment and still paying child support at the same rate as when you were employed? Are you receiving child support and facing a request from the payer to reduce child support because the payer has lost their job?

If so, you are likely facing a Friend of the Court Child Support Review. What should you bring up during review? With career and job transition coaches at Synko Associates, we have developed this list:

  1. What is your job search strategy? Are you making on-line applications, only? What are
    you doing to take a more comprehensive, aggressive approach to finding a job?

  2. Have you invested in a career coach? If not, who is mentoring you in your job search and what are their qualifications?

  3. Do you have a resume? Have you had your resume evaluated by a qualified career counselor? How many resumes have you sent out so far? If your efforts have been unsuccessful, what have you done to upgrade the impact or market presentation of your resume?

  4. Which companies would you identify as high-priority target employers? What have you done to understand their business and mission to identify who to contact and how to construct an introductory letter that may draw attention to your candidacy?

  5. What industry or professional journals and web sites do you pay attention to? What related professional meetings or tradeshows have you attended to increase your professional knowledge?

  6. What courses have you completed during your period of unemployment to demonstrate you are up-to-date professionally and a continuous learner?

  7. What you are doing to take an organized, systematic approach to networking? What have you done to network in the last few weeks? Have you attended networking events? Have you attended professional association meetings?

  8. Are you using social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn etc. to advance your job search strategy? How are you continuously improving the use of social media to reach your network? Have you evaluated the LinkedIn profile of your competition? What do you uniquely offer? What do you lack?

  9. When asked about your expected salary requirements, what number or range do you state? How have you researched that number to know if it is high or low, and competitive?

  10. Who have you used to coach you through mock or practice interviews? How have you prepared for such scheduled phone interviews? Provide a list of a few standard interview questions you expect. How do you answer those questions?

Remember, you must continue to pay court-ordered support until a new order is entered changing the support amount. Unless your agreement or judgment states otherwise or a party fails to disclose income to the Friend of the Court, support is retroactively modifiable only to the date of the petition to modify support and not before.

Lori Buiteweg is a principal with Nichols, Sacks, Slank, Sendelbach & Buiteweg, P.C. and is the incoming 2015-2016 President of the State Bar of Michigan Board of Commissioners.
Nick Synko is the Founder and Principal Partner of Synko Associates LLC, a career transition and executive coaching firm in full-time operation since 1992. He is the co-author of 100+ Career Transition Tips and is also the author of Future@Work, An Employee Survival Guide for the 21st Century

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