One of the biggest concerns of parents that are no longer in a relationship is Child Support. This is a topic that Carmen G. Soto, an attorney experienced in this area can go over with you and easily explain. A consultation regarding these issues can assist in understanding the rights and abilities under Florida law.
Each parent has the moral and moreover the legal responsibility to financially support their children. Contrary to common belief, child support is not something that can be altered through an agreement between the parents. Child support is a mathematical calculation. There is very little leeway for increasing or decreasing if the factors are not relevant under the law. Experience in this field, has taught Attorney Carmen G. Soto how to guide her clients in a manner that will result in the best interests of the child.
Florida utilizes Uniform Child Support Guidelines, governed by Florida Statute 61.30 . This guideline is basically a worksheet for determining the amount that each party is liable for. The calculation that takes place in the Guidelines Worksheet considers a few factors in the process. For example: each parent’s net income, the amount of overnight visitation each parent spends with the child(ren), the daycare costs and which parent pays it, the child(ren)’s health insurance cost and which parent is paying it. Once all of these factors are computed and inserted into the calculation the result will be the amount to be paid.
Child support through a divorce: When parties are married and had children during the course of the marriage child support is handled as one of the issues in the divorce case. The Husband in a marriage is considered the legal father of the children whether or not he is the actual biological father of the children. The legal father is the person that will pay or receive the support dependent on the facts of each case. However, if the legal father believes he is not the actual biological father there may be a process that can disestablish paternity of a child. The actual biological father may be established as not only the biological father, but the legal father also. Disestablishment of Paternity is a very specific and fact driven case and needs to be addressed in a very precise manner.
Child support without marriage/divorce : If the parents of a child are not married the process as to establishing child support is a bit different. The rights and responsibilities of the father of the child will need to be established through a process called Paternity. There are various methods that can be used to proceed with this process; a consultation with an experienced Florida Family Law lawyer such as Carmen G. Soto would assist you with the best option for your situation.
Factors considered for child support calculation : The Court will calculate what each party will contribute according to the proportionate share of each party's income. The financial information that must be disclosed and included in the calculation includes, but is not limited to gross income, net income, unreported income, income in the form of non-cash contributions, bonuses, commissions, costs for health insurance for the children, daycare and child care costs. One of the main factors is the amount of overnights each party has with the minor child. Once child support is established and a certain amount is set, the amount is paid either monthly or according to the pay schedule of the paying party.
What if a parent is not paying court-ordered support? This is another often discussed issue after child support has been ordered. If the paying parent stops paying there are many things an experience child support attorney, such as Carmen G. Soto, can assist you with. If the parent is a W-2 employee, the Court can enter an Income Deduction Order. This will mean that the parent paying will have his child support taken automatically from each pay period. If the parent decides not to work, this is not a viable option. In the eyes of the Court, being willfully unemployed or underemployed is not a valid excuse for not paying. If the non-paying parent continues with this behavior they may be held in contempt of court or even be ordered to serve jail time for not supporting their children.
Child support can mean a better quality of life for your children. Contact Carmen G. Soto when you need to have it ordered through the Court. Our offices are in located in downtown Ft. Lauderdale and we serve clients in all of the surrounding areas. Let experience in the court system be on your side.