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In Florida, child support is established by a mandatory guideline that has been established by the state legislature. The court and parties can only deviate from the guideline under certain, very limited exceptions.
In fact, a parent cannot waive a child’s right to child support even by agreement. In every case, the court primarily considers the parents’ net monthly income, certain specified deductions, the cost of health insurance and child care costs.
The amount of child support is also affected by the percentage of overnight time sharing each parent has with the children on an annual basis.
Like other states, Florida has a formula and specific guidelines to follow for calculating and determining child support. However, reaching a fair figure isn’t just a matter of plugging in numbers. This is where an experienced child support attorney Tampa like Blair Chan is necessary.
Your family law attorney can help you to evaluate and to determine accurate incomes, establish the appropriate expenses, and other factors that affect your child’s need for support and the parents’ ability to pay, even if you are going through a collaborative divorce.
These issues aren’t always as straightforward as they may seem, but they are incredibly important. You need a family law attorney on your side to make sure the child support in your case is reasonable and appropriate and in compliance with the guidelines.
No matter how carefully you plan, life is bound to change at some point in the future. People change jobs or relocate, people lose jobs or suffer disabilities, and children grow older and become more involved in their own activities. Sometimes, these changes can affect a parent’s child support obligation. Each case is unique, and there are many potential reasons for modifications.
Even if you and the other parent agree on the modification, it’s critical to get it in writing and approved by the Court. Informal arrangements are not enforceable and could even land you in legal trouble, including a costly child support arrearage that sets you back financially.
We practice exclusively in the area of family and matrimonial law. Whether you are considering a divorce, pursuing unpaid support, or you need to modify an existing child support order, our child support attorneys can help you. Contact us if you live in St. Petersburg, Plant City, Clearwater or Pinellas County, Pasco County or Hillsborough County.