When you are in the thick of a divorce, it can be very difficult to anticipate all of the ways that your divorce agreement will affect your future life, even when represented by excellent legal counsel.
The terms of your agreement may seem tenable at the time of the decree — maybe because you are so ready to be done with it all — or alternatively, you may be dissatisfied altogether, but are unsure how to move the needle in your favor. There are many ways that a divorce decree can place an undue burden on one party or another, which is why the law grants avenues for modifying a divorce judgment.
There are many circumstances that might be accepted as grounds to modify a divorce judgment. The issue you are seeking to address may have been one you knew would be a problem when the judgment was issued, in which case you will need to appeal the decision before a higher court. A common example of this might be a high asset divorce involving exorbitant alimony or child support payments that comply with conventional percentages, but are unnecessary when combined with a sizable divorce settlement.
It could also be that your circumstances have changed, and a once-viable divorce judgment is now no longer working. For instance, if you agreed to certain alimony or child support payments at the time of the divorce, only to subsequently take a cut in pay at work, then the factors that contributed to calculating those payments are no longer accurate. In this case, you could then appeal to have the judgment modified. This modification might be a temporary stop-gap measure, or a more permanent change, depending on the nature of your needs.
Modifying a divorce decree can be a frustrating and lengthy ordeal, and there's no reason to take that journey alone. If you're ready to appeal your divorce judgment, enlisting the guidance of qualified legal representation can help ensure that you present the best possible case to the courts and keep your rights protected.
Source: Findlaw, "Appeals and Motions to Modify the Divorce Judgment," accessed Nov. 03, 2016