Q: We separated on March 2020. We are still legally married and do not have any legal representation nor are we filing for divorce just yet as far as I’m concerned. My ex-spouse stated he would give me $1,500mthly for our two daughters (6&8 years old). I thought it was low but accepted it because he said that’s all he would pay me. He began paying it without any issue on March 2020 until Feb 2021. He sends me the money through Zelle. He has refused to send me the payment for March 2021 unless I sign a document he drafted himself where he states that we agreed to him paying me $1,500mthly for child support and there he also mentions that he has the girls staying with him on Sundays and Mondays which are his current days off from work. For the most part he has stayed with them unless he had to work or went on vacation in which cases I just kept my daughters. I really do not want to deal with court. But want to make sure that me signing such document for him wont negatively affect me if in the future my needs change and I need to take him to court to ask him to pay me more money for child support. Can a judge deny me a request for higher payment because I signed a letter agreeing to $1500?
A: Generally out-of-court agreements – especially informal ones – are modifiable. This is all the more so because – if it’s not drawn up by an attorney – it won’t have the legally-mandated recitals of incomes & presumptive calculations. The failure to have such language in the agreement makes it legally unenforceable. Schedule a consult with a Westchester Child Support attorney for a full assessment.