Modification: Washington State Division of Child Support
Washington State Department of Social and Health Services Home page

Division of Child Support

Modification of a Child Support Order


How do I get my current child support changed?

If DCS is not enforcing your child support or you want to modify your order without a DCS review:

  • Contact your attorney to modify the order, or
  • You may do it yourself, by using the "Pro Se" method.
Packets are available at any DCS office. Some counties have court facilitators to assist you.

If you do not have a case with DCS, but you want DCS to review your order, you may apply for full collection services and request a review for modification. Is there already a child support order?

If DCS is enforcing your child support order, you may ask DCS to review your order to see if a modification is appropriate, or you may petition for modification without DCS's help.

You also may make a motion for a temporary order to reduce your support obligation in circumstances such as a temporary layoff. Forms to petition to modify or request a temporary order are available at http://www.courts.wa.gov/forms/. To ask DCS to review your order:

Review

  1. Print the following forms:
  2. Complete the forms as required, and mail them to your child support office.
  3. DCS will request worksheets from the other party. (This process may take more than 30 days from the time DCS receives your information.)

DCS will review your support order for modification using the following criteria:

  • DCS must have jurisdiction over the order or acquire it by registration of the order. If another state has jurisdiction over your support order, contact that state directly to request adjustment. Otherwise, DCS may refer the case to that state for modification.
The amount of change must be:
  • At least $100 and at least a 25% change up or down, or

  • An increase in current support of less than $100 would
    allow your family to stop receiving public assistance.

  • It's been three years since the order was entered or last reviewed by DCS for modification,
    or
  • There has been a significant change of circumstances since the order was last modified.
Some examples that may be a significant change in circumstances include:
  • You are now in Jail.
  • You have become permanently disabled or now receive public assistance.
  • You have new children you must support.
  • You have lost your job and are unable to find employment at the same wage.

If you have an Administrative Order from Washington State, you may petition to modify your support order without asking DCS for a review:

Prospective Modification of Administrative Order

If you have a Washington State administrative order and circumstances have changed since DCS entered the order, you may tell DCS that you want an administrative hearing by completing:

or complete a:
Late Request for Administrative Hearing and Washington State Child Support Worksheets.

Mail the completed forms to the field office that handles your case. (You may also call the field office to request a late hearing.)

How do I get medical support included in my support order?

If you have a case with Washington's Division of Child Support, and your support order contains no medical support provision, you may request DCS modify the order to include medical.

To ask DCS to review your order:

  1. Print the following forms:
  2. Complete the forms as required, and mail them to your child support office.
  3. DCS will request worksheets from the other party. (This process may take more than 30 days from the time DCS receives your information.)

How do I get the income of the other party to modify my child support order?

If you are modifying your child support and do not have the income of the other party, you may send DCS a Request for Income Information for Purposes of Entering a Child Support Order, DSHS 18-701.

For more information to help in modifying your order, see the brochure How to obtain or modify a Child Support Order on your own, DSHS 22-021.

If you don't already have a case with us, you may apply for our services.