(904) 329-4138

Child Support Lawyer Jacksonville, FL

Let Liberty Law assist you in Navigating Florida’s Child Support Laws

 Few issues in family law are more contentious than those which surround money or children. In the case of child support, both of these issues are involved.  Chapter 61of the Florida Statutes address the issues of child support and visitation rights. 

Floridacourts no longer favor the mother in child custody determinations, and have, in recent years, been in support of relatively equal time-sharing between parents. This is important because the child support determination is based in part on the amount of parenting time or overnight stays with each parent.

The courts use child support guidelines to provide a consistent method in determining child support obligations.  These guidelines allow the courts to focus on the following when trying to figure out how much support is adequate:

  • Net monthly income of each parent
  • The number of children who are the subject of the pending action
  • The amount of daycare paid by each parent
  • The monthly cost of medical, dental and vision insurance paid by each parent and co-pays
  • Additional support payments made to other children
  • Percentage of overnight stays of the child or children with each parent

            The court, nevertheless, is always free to deviate from the child support guidelines and order support which is appropriate. If the court deviates from the child support guidelines, the judge must specifically state his/her reasons for the deviation in writing.

Modification of Child Support

There are a number of issues which could lead to one parent requesting a change in the child support amount or terms. Some common concerns or situations which arise are:

  • Hiding assets or income — Financial disclosure must be complete. Incomplete disclosure may be cause for contempt of court or may even result in a final judgment for support being overturned as a result of fraud.
  • Non-payment of child support — If your income drops and you are unable to pay the agreed-upon amount, you should file for a modification. Withholding child support payments is willful disregard of the court’s wishes and could result in enforcement actions, including jail time.
  • Increase or decrease in overnight stays — If work schedules change or other issues arise which cause one parent to have fewer or additional overnight stays, this may be cause for a modification.

Retroactive Child Support

In the case of unmarried parents, it is possible that one parent may seek to collect child support payments. If a paternity determination is positive, or if the father acknowledges paternity, the court can rule that child support is owed for up to two years in the past, starting from the date of the couple’s separation.

Call Liberty Law – (904) 329-4138

If you believe that you are owed child support, or entitled to a modification of your child support based a change in either your circumstances, please contact our office today for a no-cost consultation.