After a final judgment has been entered, a periodic review of a child support order will occur under certain circumstances and if financial circumstances of the parties have changed. In Michigan, the review is conducted by the friend of the court office.
Generally, if a child is receiving public assistance including medical assistance, then a review of the child support order will take place at least once every three years unless notice is received stating that there is not good cause to proceed with the review, and if neither party requests it. If, however, a review of the child support order is requested by either party, the court will determine within two weeks of receiving the request if the review is necessary or is due. Review can also take place at the discretion of the court.
Reasonable grounds to show that the child support should be modified include a change in the physical custody of the child which the court did not order, an increase or decrease in the needs of the child or changes in the financial circumstances of both the recipient and the payer. A change in financial circumstance could include a recipient, payer or both applying for unemployment benefits, worker’s compensation or public assistance. Also, if a payer or recipient is behind bars or is being released after being behind bars for more than a year, then a review will occur.
If a child support order was based on incorrect facts, then a review will be initiated. Typically, a modification of the child support order will be filed and a new child support amount will be determined based on the child support formula used by Michigan courts. In a child support order, the office will ensure that the child has health care coverage.