When a couple divorces, the court goes to great lengths to ensure that the couple's children will be well cared for. Part of this process is the determination of child support, which requires the noncustodial parent to pay a certain amount each month to the custodial parent. When calculating child support in Illinois, the court takes each parent's wages into account, then assigns an amount based on each parent's current ability to pay.
Over time, however, the ability to pay can change drastically. If a parent suddenly begins to earn more or less money than he or she did before, he or she can apply for a modification, which will change the terms of the arrangement to better reflect the current situation. It's a process that will soon be initiated by actor Charlie Sheen, who says he wants to change the amount of money he must pay to his ex-wife each month.
Currently, Mr. Sheen must pay $55,000 per month to the mother of his two daughters, ages 8 and 10. According to a source quoted on AZ Central, the TV star hasn't seen his children in months, which has made him feel frustrated about paying child support. Mr. Sheen claims his ex-wife deliberately scheduled a vacation over Christmas so he couldn't see his daughters.
In general, child support modifications are given only when a parent has seen a substantial change in circumstances, like a job loss. When a parent is no longer able to afford his or her child support, the court is likely to alter the agreement to suit the new circumstances. The same is true if a parent begins earning substantially more: the other parent may seek a modification to increase the support payments.
It isn't clear how much of a reduction the Mr. Sheen will be seeking or when he will begin the legal proceedings. There is currently no indication that the actor has suffered a loss of income, but a more in-depth look into the actor's may still be forthcoming.
Source: AZ Central, "Charlie Sheen reportedly wants child support reduction" No author given, Mar. 14, 2014