A family’s life changes over time, and the orders made in family court during a divorce or separation case will not always be relevant. When parents or ex-spouses have experienced a significant change in life circumstances, they can request that the court orders be updated to match those circumstances. An Omaha modification attorney can help you determine if you qualify for a modification.

When Are Modifications Allowed in Omaha?

Modifications are allowed in Omaha when both parties agree to the change or when the court approves it. If you agree that a change to a court order is necessary, you can request that the court modify the order, and a change in circumstances is not required. The court will only refuse to allow a modification both parties agree on if:

  1. The modification is unfair
  2. The modification concerns children and is not in their best interests

Otherwise, the court will approve the modification, and it will become an enforceable court order. Modifications are more complicated if ex-spouses or co-parents disagree on a modification to a court order. Then, the parent wishing to make a modification has to petition the family court and prove that there is a relevant, lasting, and substantial change in circumstances. In addition to a change in circumstance, any order affecting children has to be in their interests.

Each type of family court order has different requirements as to what counts as a relevant change in circumstances. This includes alimony, child support, and child custody. Property division is one divorce court order that cannot be modified. After the finalization of the divorce decree, property division is final.

Alimony Modifications

Modifications to alimony are allowed when the financial situation of either party changes substantially, and this is expected to be a long-term change. This financial change may include:

  • Job loss
  • Increase or decrease in income
  • Addition or loss of financial resources, like a debt or inheritance
  • Additional financial obligations, such as other support payments or medical bills

The court will review each case individually to decide if a modification to alimony is appropriate in the parties’ circumstances.

Child Support Modifications

A child support modification also relies on a substantial and continued change in the financial circumstances of either the parent or the child. The modification must also be in the child’s interests. In order for a financial change to be significant, the following must be true:

  1. Proposed changes to the support calculations will change the current support amount by a minimum of 10% and more than $25 to be considered a significant change.
  2. The financial change in circumstance had to have occurred at least three months before filing for modification and is expected to occur for the following six months.

Examples of a financial change in circumstance may include:

  • An increase or decrease in the financial needs of the child
  • A modification to the custody order
  • An increase or decrease in parental income or financial resources

If the paying parent files for a modification due to a job loss or a lower income, they must prove that this loss was not their fault and not done with the goal of paying less in child support.

Child Custody Modifications

In Nebraska, a child custody order must fit specific guidelines to be considered for modification. This includes:

  1. The is a substantial and continuous change in circumstances that would have altered the first custody order had the information been known or present;
  2. The existing custody order is no longer beneficial to the child’s interests; and
  3. The suggested custody order is to the child’s benefit.

A new custody order or parenting plan must include this court finding, as well as a new parenting plan that adapts to the changes. It may also result in the modification of child support.

For modifying a custody order, what is considered a substantial change in circumstances is up to court discretion. This may include:

  • Parental relocation
  • A custodial parent cannot provide for a child’s needs
  • A parent or their living environment is unsafe for children

When a parent files with the court to modify an order, they have to inform their co-parent that they are doing so.


Q: How Often Can You Modify Child Support in Nebraska?

A: In practice, at least three months or six months should have passed in order to successfully modify a child support order in Nebraska. You can modify child support as often as needed as long as there is a significant and continuous change. In order to be considered continuous, the change must have already existed for at least three months and be expected to last another six months. If a parent requests a modification of support orders too frequently, the court may frown on this.

Q: At What Age Can a Child Decide Which Parent to Live With in Nebraska?

A: In Nebraska, a child can only make a decision about which parent they do or do not want to live with when they are 18 or emancipated and are no longer legally a child. However, before a child is 18 or emancipated, the court may consider their opinion when deciding child custody. These opinions will be given more weight the older the child is and the more mature and reasoned their wishes are. The court always holds a child’s interests as the priority.

Q: How Is Spousal Support Calculated in Nebraska?

A: In Nebraska, there is no specific formula used to calculate spousal support, which is called alimony in the state. Instead, the court will review certain factors, such as:

  1. The financial circumstances of both spouses
  2. The duration of their marriage
  3. The contributions each party made to the marriage, including financial contributions and contributions to raising children
  4. Any interruption of education or career to contribute to the marriage
  5. Whether the primary guardian of children can hold gainful employment and still care for children


These factors are used to determine the court’s decisions on both alimony and property division.

Q: Can a Mother Move a Child Away From the Father in Nebraska?

A: A mother could move a child away from the father in certain circumstances in Nebraska. A parent who wants to move and relocate their child’s primary residential home must give the other parent notice of the move. If the other parent receives this notice and does not consent to the move occurring, they can take this to court. If the case goes to court, the parent wishing to relocate must request permission to move, and it must be in the interests of the child.

Contact Stange Law Firm

For help with order modification, contact Stange Law Firm.