4 Reasons Child Support Payments Stop
Many divorced parents rely on child support payments from their ex-spouse in order to maintain their household budget. After all, there are a lot of expenses connected to raising children. Housing, food, clothing, and health care add up. In fact, according to one analysis, a family raising a child will spend approximately $300,000 on child rearing, from the day a child is born until the child is no longer a minor, at age 18.
When child support payments suddenly cease, it can lead to discomfort and worry. Understanding why payments have stopped can lead to next steps. When there is no legal reason for payments to cease, action can be taken. To explore your options, connect with a Tampa family lawyer.
Possible Reasons You Are No Longer Receiving Payments
Support payments are a legal obligation, a parent who is responsible for making the payments cannot simply stop making payments. If they believe they should pay less or no longer be responsible for making payments, they must go through the proper legal channels to make these shifts.
That said, there are situations in which payments stop. Four common reasons follow.
- Child reaches the age of majority. In Florida, the age of majority is 18. At this age, a child is considered an adult. As a result, child support payments are no longer required.
- Emancipation has occurred. When a child is considered self-sufficient, and is no longer under the control of their parents, they are emancipated. This could be the case through a court order or after a child gets married or joins the military.
- Financial situation has changed for the paying parent. If the paying parent loses their job or experiences a significant decrease in income, they can seek a modification. A court petition and legal process is required.
- Needs of the child have changed. Modifications and adjustments to child support payments can also be possible if a child’s needs change as they grow older.
If you have concerns about why you are no longer receiving child support, it is essential to speak with a Florida attorney. An experienced family lawyer knows how to protect your rights and the rights of your children.
Financial Stress Could Lead to a Modification
It could be possible the paying parent is pursuing a modification. If this is true, the parent will need to petition the court and include information about their income, including tax returns, pay stubs, and documentation of expenses. Proving that there has been a change in circumstances from the time the divorce was finalized could result in a court determining a modification is needed. If so, a new child support order will be issued.
Because Tampa family lawyers understand the laws and regulations surrounding child support in the state of Florida, and can help you navigate your legal choices.
Are you unsure why the child support you used to receive has stopped? The legal team at Blair H. Chan, III is available to investigate the reason why support payments have stopped and guide you toward a favorable outcome. To discuss next steps, call 813-280-5301 to schedule a consultation.