Changing a Support Order

Health and Human Services

Only the court can change the amount of basic support, childcare support, and medical support that a parent has been court ordered to pay.

When can I ask the court to change my order?

The court may change support orders if there is a substantial change in circumstance, as required by Minnesota Statues section 518.64, which makes the terms of the order unfair.

One or more of the following must be shown:

  • Substantial increase or decrease in gross income or need of either party
  • Public Assistance (cash, child care, medical assistance, Minnesota Care) is being expended on behalf of the child
  • Extraordinary medical expenses of the child
  • Change in the availability of appropriate health care coverage
  • There is work or education related child care expense
  • Emancipation of a child
  • Both parties agree to the modification of the order providing public assistance is not being expended

How can I change my order?

Proper legal documents must be completed to ask the court to change the amount of basic support, medical support, or childcare support.

If you are receiving child support services and have a change in circumstances; you can contact your child support worker. You may ask the county to review your case to see if it meets criteria for change.

If the county reviews your case and determines your order meets the criteria for a modification request the county will prepare the legal paperwork to request the court change the order.

If the county reviews your case and determines your case does not meet the criteria for change, you can still:

  • bring your own court action
  • hire an attorney to request the court change the court order

Bringing your own action:

If you are not receiving child support services or you want to bring your own action, you can complete the legal documents (called a motion) or you can hire an attorney to bring an action. Forms and instructions can be obtained at Family Court or on the Minnesota Court Forms web page.

The State of Minnesota has an online Guidelines Calculator to help you estimate the amount of child support that the court may order.

For more information on the statute changes go to Minnesota Statutes.

For more information on changing your court order, or the new child support laws go to State of MN website.
For an interactive web tool on creating your own documents click here.