Family Law Questions? Ask a Family Lawyer Online.
Thank you for your question. I should start by saying that because the nuances of every situation are different, this information should not be construed as complete or advice without consulting in person with counsel. That said, a child support obligation does not stop in Texas unless it has been so ordered by the courts. Parents can reach whatever alternative agreement they please, but such an agreement is essentially unenforceable unless/until it has been ratified by the courts.
In some cases, the state even as the right to enforce a child support order unilaterally--for example, if the custodial parent receives state financial assistance (e.g. food stamps), the state can ask for the court to continue the support obligation even over the custodial parent's objection.
There are plenty of cases that I have seen in my years of practice where the parents reach an agreement to modify support without getting a formal court order. In more than a few instances, I have seen the custodial parent go back to enforce the unpaid support plus interest after years of non-payment.
Assuming that the correct procedures are followed, the answer is "yes".
The support order could be modified by the court in one of two ways. The parents could reach an agreement, sign the agreement, and have the agreement approved by the court. If the correct procedures are followed, each parent would thereafter receive a copy of the signed order. Alternatively, one parent could go to the court and ask for the change, but the other parent would have to receive notice of the court date in advance, and should receive a copy of the court's order after the court date.
So either way, both parents would have notice before and after the court modifies a support order.
Does that make sense?