How Are Child Support Payments Established in Florida?
In Florida, as in other states, child support obligations are established by court order. If you are going through a divorce, you and your spouse may be able to agree on a support amount.
If there are issues with calculating child support (for example, if your spouse is hiding income), you may need to go to court. In either case, our attorneys can work side-by-side with you to make sure you receive an appropriate child support order.
In most cases, child support continues until the child’s eighteenth birthday. The court order awarding child support will state the amount to be paid each month.
If the order covers multiple children, it will specify the amount and end date for support for each individual child. Parents can agree to a different end date for child support.
However, courts do have the ability to increase or reduce child support awards by up to five percent. Courts have the discretion to do this “after considering all relevant factors”. They can order even greater deviations if an award based on the guidelines’ calculation “would be unjust or inappropriate.”
There are four main factors that come into play with the Florida child support guidelines. These are:
The parents’ respective incomes are important factors when calculating child support awards in Orlando, Florida. A parent will pay child support according to both his or her ability to pay and earning potential, among other factors.
This is why you need to make sure that you have as much information as possible about you and your partner’s income. You can ensure that you receive a fair support award (or are not required to pay too much in child support) by having accurate income information.
Disability, Social Security, and workers’ compensation benefits
Spousal support from a prior marriage
Retirement and investment income
Business income from trusts and estates
Calculating income can often be one of the most challenging issues when it comes to determining child support. Our attorneys can help make sure that your spouse is not hiding income and that you accurately disclose the right information about your personal financial circumstances.
Calculating Child Support: Child Care
The next major factor in calculating child support is the cost of child care for employment purposes. This child care cost will be factored into the guidelines with each parent responsible for their proportional share.
Calculating Child Support: Time-Sharing
The parents’ time-sharing schedule will factor into the determination of child support as well. However, it is important to note that the parent with the majority of time-sharing will not necessarily be the parent to receive child support. Substantial sharing of overnights (over 20 percent) also impacts the child support award.
Calculating Child Support: Health Insurance
The fourth major factor for most parents when calculating child support is health insurance. This includes medical, dental and vision insurance. You will want to make sure you have all relevant information in order to ensure a fair order of child support.
Call Now To Speak With An Orlando Child Support Lawyer from the McMichen, Cinami & Demps law office.
The Orlando child support lawyers at McMichen, Cinami & Demps have decades of experience representing clients with child support issues. We are a family law firm that can provide legal advice for all matters related to child support, including child support enforcement, modifying child support, and child custody.
To learn more about enforcing your rights and to get help making sure that you receive a fair child support award, call (407) 898-2161 or contact us today for a free consultation.