Every parent has an obligation to support their child until the child turns 18 years old. This fundamental assumption underlies much of the law relating to family law. Even if you were not married when your child was born, you still have a responsibility to financially provide for your child.
If you have children, you may worry about receiving enough child support or paying too much child support. We want to help you get it right because child support is a vested right of the child and can be a significant expense. Our attorney and our team at MGM Law, P.A., can help you understand all of the factors that go into making a child support determination. While Florida Statute Section 61.13 governs the amount of child support a party will pay, There are numerous elements that make up that calculation, and we can help you work through the process.
How is child support determined?
There are several factors that are used to determine the amount of child support. They include:
- The income of both parents;
- The amount of timesharing each parent has;
- The child's health care and child care costs;
- The standard needs of the child.
Income can include overtime, regularly recurring gifts from friends or family, regularly received interest payments or dividends, or pension and disability payments. A court may also look at additional factors which can affect these calculations. For instance, a court will impute income to an individual who is unemployed or underemployed, as they presume the person needs a job and income to survive, and a parent cannot avoid their child support payments by voluntarily working fewer hours or by taking a lower paying job.
We know how important child support payments are, and we can assist with support enforcement in cases where an individual fails to make payments. If you have a support obligation and are falling behind, contact us and speak with our attorney. These payments will not go away, and you cannot discharge them in bankruptcy. You may be eligible for a modification, and we can help you petition the court for a modification of child support.