Child support is often the subject of dispute in a divorce case, but it is an essential component to a child’s well-being and financial security. Whether you are the parent paying or receiving, you may have questions and concerns about how to go about establishing child support amounts and payment.
If you have questions about your Florida child support, the Caveda Law Firm, P.A., can supply answers. We have been helping residents of Tampa, Tampa Bay, and Hillsborough County for more than 15 years.
Contact us today by calling (813) 463-0800.
Our legal staff has the experience and the understanding to help you obtain a satisfactory agreement designed with the best interests of your children in mind.
Understanding Your Support Obligation
Child support is ordered in a divorce case or paternity suit, and the amount is determined by one of two formulas known as the Child Support Guidelines. Child Support Formula A applies if one of the parents spends less than 146 overnights with the child and Child Support Formula B applies if the child spends at least 146 overnights with both parents.
In addition to the amount of overnights spent with each parent, the guidelines typically take into account the net incomes of both parents, the amount of day care needed for the parent to work or seek employment, the amount of health insurance premiums paid to cover the children, as well as the number of minor children. The court may require either parent to provide health insurance coverage if it is reasonably available through their employer or otherwise affordable.
Certain factors, such as the living expenses of the parent paying child support are not usually considered, but there are several other components that will be reviewed in assessing the amount of support. These include:
- Unusual medical (including dental), psychological, or educational expenses
- Any independent income of the child/children
- Whether the parent receiving child support will receive both child support and alimony
- Any seasonal variations in a parent’s income or expenses
- The age of the child/children, (older children are typically presumed to have greater needs)
- Any children with special needs
- Any shared parental arrangement (146 overnights or more)
- Any IRS Dependency Exemption
Once the amount of child support is determined, adjustments can be made if sudden financial circumstances change – but you must take the case back to court in order to modify the child support order.
Consequences of Non-Payment
If you are the paying parent and you are tempted to skip a payment because you’ve been denied visitation or because you are struggling financially – don’t. Failing to pay child support can result in suspension of your driver’s license or even jail time.
Contact the Florida divorce attorney at Caveda Law Firm, P.A. – we can often renegotiate the terms of the child support order or make sure that your visitation schedule is being met. If you aren’t receiving your child support payments, the Florida divorce attorney at Caveda Law Firm, P.A. can help enforce the court order. We provide assistance with both child support modification and enforcement.
We Can Help!
If you have questions about child support, or you need help with any aspect of your divorce, contact an attorney who has the experience and compassion to advocate on your behalf during this difficult transition.
For a consultation with a family lawyer in Tampa, Tampa Bay or Hillsborough County, Florida, contact the Caveda Law Firm at (813) 463-0800 or via our contact form today. We are ready to help.