Massachusetts law is clear that child support judgments are not subject to retroactive modification expect with respect to any period during there is pending a complaint for modification.
However, in a recent case, the court set the following requirements for an equitable credit to be received against child support arrearage:
The payor must demonstrate the following to receive an equitable credit:
- the support recipient agreed (a) to transfer custody of the child to the payor for an extended period of time not contemplated in the original custody order, and (b) to accept the payor’s direct support of the child as an alternative method of satisfying the payor’s child support obligation;
- the custody transfer was not the result of duress, coercion, or undue influence exerted by the payor against either the recipient or the child; the payor provided the child with adequate support and maintenance while the child was principally domiciled in the payor’s home;
- the recipient was relieved of supporting the child during the period in question;
- the alternative support arrangement was not contrary to the child’s best interests; and
- granting a credit to the payor for his or her direct support of the child would not result in injustice or undue hardship to the recipient.
The court further stated that even if two parents execute a written agreement to modify child support, it will not be enforceable unless it is approved by the court.
Should you be seeking an increase or reduction in child support, contact the Law Offices of Renee Lazar either through email or telephone 978-844-4095 to schedule a FREE one hour no obligation consultation to discuss your particular situation.