Child Support in Florida
In the state of Florida, a judge can order either parent to pay a “fair” amount of child support in cases involving a divorce or in situations between unmarried parents. The decision will be based on the specifics of the particular case. A well-versed Pensacola child support lawyer will tell you that Florida has very specific child support guidelines that the courts use to figure out the amount of child support that will be required to be paid based on the best interest of the child.
These guidelines are generally followed, unless an agreement has been reached by the parents on their own as to a fair and reasonable amount of child support (as determined by the court), or in cases that involved other pertinent factors, such as unusual medical, educational, psychological or dental expenses, the independent income of the child, the seasonal variations in a parent’s income, whether or not the custodial parent gets both child and spousal support, and any other relevant and unexpected circumstances that may arise.
With respect to the length of time that child support will be required to be paid, it should be noted that in Florida, if you have an unmarried child who reaches the age of 18 and is a full-time high school student who lives with one of the parents, the parents will be required to maintain their respective support obligations if the child needs it, until such time as the child finishes the 12th grade or turns 19, whichever comes first.
You should also be aware that child support and custody orders from the court are subject to change or they can be modified based on any major changes in income (up or down), and/or the living arrangements of the children. While it is true that all orders regarding the children are modifiable in the future, any knowledgeable Pensacola child support lawyer would strongly suggest that you not enter into any agreement based on the fact that it can always be changed later.
As is the case in most states, Florida has a provision for taking child support directly from the wages of the parent who has been ordered to provide support, and it will be withheld much like income tax is from earnings. This method of paying and receiving child support is typically easier for both parties and is deemed to be a pretty dependable solution in the long run.
If you need a Pensacola child support lawyer, please call Brad Fisher at 850-470-0100 for a free consultation.