According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, “there has been a 39 percent increase in the number of divorced spouses seeking changes to child-support arrangements in a tight job market and deepening recession.”
Divorce lawyers note that many of the cases going to court are being brought by parents seeking lower payments because they have lost their jobs or face foreclosure on their homes. Donald Tye notes that for middle- and upper-income families, “another financial pressure point is investment vehicles like retirement accounts and college-tuition funds, which are often regarded as communal property in divorce agreements.”
These funds, which are normally expected to increase in value are now being tapped for cash or decimated by a sinking stock market. “As a result,” states Donald, “many judges are adjusting court-ordered private school and college tuition payments to fall more in line with state college fees than with those charged by elite prep schools or Ivy League colleges.”
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