Child Support Attorneys Serving Jacksonville Beach, Florida
If you are facing a divorce and have children, the courts will usually require child support payments. Even years later, child support payments may be legally modified depending on income levels. Coplan-Gardner & Gardner, PA, is an experienced legal firm that regularly handles family law cases that relate to child support.
How Child Support is Determined
Florida has a table of income that helps determine the amount of child support based on the number of children. The primary income figure is the combined income of both parents. Other expenses, such as health insurance, taxes and daycare costs, are also factored into this number.
In Florida, parents of minor children are obligated to provide financial support. Following an “Income Shares Model,” the courts will estimate how much parents would have spent on their children if they had remained married. The amount is divided between the parents, and adjustments are made based on incomes. Florida courts will almost always order the amount provided for in Florida Statute 61.30.
Department of Revenue and the State of Florida
Employers are required to report re-hires, new hires and manage information about employees that have income-related child support withholding orders through the Florida Department of Revenue. These services are available to families to help ensure that children receive the court-ordered child support they need.
Modifications to Child Support Payments
The amount of a child support order is directly based on the income of both parents and includes the needs of the child. This order stipulates the amount of child support, the date it is due, who will pay the support and who is the recipient of the support.
As income levels or circumstances change, support orders may also need adjustments. Child support orders may be modified in court at any time, provided the change is at least $50 or 15 percent, whichever amount is higher. An attorney can help file a petition for modification of child support, which will be reviewed by a judge.
Enforcement of Child Support Orders
The most common way for a parent to enforce a child support order is to have an attorney file a motion for civil contempt, which notifies the court that a parent is behind on their payments.
To prove a parent is in contempt of an order, you must be able to show:
- That a valid child support order is in place and has been approved and signed by a judge
- The parent has not paid child support as stipulated in the agreement
- The other parent has the financial means to pay; however, the court will assume they do, and it’s their burden of proof to prove otherwise
A judge will then decide whether the parent is in violation and contempt of the order. If a judge finds that backed support is owed, they will issue an order that states how and when the overdue support shall be paid.
Additionally, parents that do not pay their child support orders may be subject to a court freezing their financial accounts, overdue amounts reported to collection agencies and possibly have their passport revoked.
Knowledgeable Child Support Attorneys
Coplan-Gardner & Gardner have been handling child support issues for nearly four decades. They are dedicated to protecting their clients’ best interests and are available to review child support cases. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with our team. If you are military personnel, a firefighter, police officer, first responder or educator, contact us to learn more about discounts and free consultations.