How Does Additional Children Impact Child Support?
Both parents have an obligation to financially provide for their child, and when parents divorce or are no longer together the noncustodial parent, or parent that spends less physical time with the child, typically pays child support to the custodial parent for the child’s needs. One common question asked by custodial and noncustodial parents alike is what happens to child support if the parent paying support has another child? At the law office of Blair H. Chan, III, our experienced Tampa family law attorneys are prepared to answer this and any other questions you may have about child support. To learn more, call or contact our office today to schedule a consultation.
After child support is calculated for the original child in the relationship, that support amount remains the same unless appealed or modified by the court. If the noncustodial parent has additional children, in Florida that does not affect the amount of child support owed to the original child. The rationale for this is that if the noncustodial parent has additional children, either through remarriage or with someone in another relationship, that is a choice being made by that adult. The child being supported should not have to bear the costs of that parent’s choice to financially support additional children.
However, if the child in question is a subsequent child of the noncustodial parent, in other words if the child is not the noncustodial parent’s first child, the amount of support awarded to subsequent children is often less than the first child. This is because any prior child support obligations are taken into account when determining the amount of support that a noncustodial parent can pay for additional children. Typically, the amount of child support awarded decreases for every subsequent child born to a noncustodial parent.
Modifying Child Support
Additional children may impact the child support payments of the original child when it comes to modifying a support payment. While the noncustodial parent cannot use the excuse of having more children as a substantial change in circumstances to lower child support payments to the first child, it may be used as a defense if the custodial parent requests an increase in support payments in a modification of support. This applies even if the noncustodial parent gets another job or an increase in salary in order to pay the support of multiple children. The courts in Florida are not supposed to consider the additional salary when determining whether an increase in child support is appropriate for the case.
Talk to Our Office Now
Determining child support in Florida and how additional children can affect those calculations is a complicated matter, but you do not have to figure it out alone. At the law office of Blair H. Chan, III in Tampa Bay, our dedicated and knowledgeable Florida family law attorneys are here to help. Call the office or contact us online today to schedule a consultation of your child support case.