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Who Will Be Responsible For Child Support When Parents Are Divorcing In Florida?

Child SupportUnder Florida law, child support is determined by the net incomes of the parents. Who pays medical insurance and who would pay any daycare or aftercare can be factored into child support. It also is determined by the number of overnights with each parent, plus other factors such as who is the head of household subsequent to post-divorce filing. There are many factors that go into calculating child support. In a lot of cases in Florida, the parties’ incomes are equal, so the party who is paying for health insurance and any aftercare would get reimbursement based on the percentage of the income.

How Is The Amount Of Child Support Determined In Florida? Can The Amount Be Changed As The Child Ages?

A formula under Florida Statute 61.30 determines how much child support will be, based on the two parents’ net incomes and how many children they have. That is then divided by the overnights. There’s a section in there to look at who pays the medical insurance as they get a credit for a percentage for the children. We cannot waive child support in Florida. Some people can waive if it’s a nominal amount, but for the most part, we have to follow the guidelines within five percent.

Modification of child support is very easy in Florida. You just have to show that either party’s income has deviated enough that child support would change by more than $50, whether one party’s income has increased or decreased. Child support is always able to be changed upon a showing of a substantial change in circumstances, which usually means the income of the mom or the dad.

Does Florida Recognize Alimony Or Spousal Support In A Divorce Case?

In Florida, we have Statute 61.08, which recognizes alimony. The legislature has threatened to change the alimony statute, but as of today’s date, they have not. There are certain factors that the court looks at under the alimony statute. They basically look at the need and ability to pay and the lifestyle of the parties.

What Final Family Court Orders Are Able To Be Modified? What Are The Most Common Reasons That People Seek Out A Modification?

Under Florida law, property orders cannot be modified at all. Once you enter into a property settlement agreement, it’s done. Child support and time-sharing, however, can be modified. Some alimony is non-modifiable, so it depends on the kind of alimony (there are several different kinds in Florida). To modify a custody or support order, you need to show a substantial and unanticipated change in circumstances.

What Is Florida’s Law Concerning One Parent Needing To Relocate With The Child?

Under Florida law, if either parent wants to relocate more than 50 miles outside the primary residence, then they have to look at certain factors before it would be allowed. The judges will discuss 11 factors under the statute to determine if a relocation is in the best interest of the child.

Are Judges Hesitant To Change Parenting Time Or Allow A Relocation Within One Year Of A Divorce Or Custody Arrangement Being Finalized?

Judges, I think, tend to be very strict in modifying time-sharing as it affects the children. They hold people to the hard and fast rule under the Wade v. Hirschman case, which is that you need to show a substantial unanticipated change in circumstances. That change can’t just be Mom or Dad has to drive farther for a job; it has to be something substantial, such as it’s not in the child’s best interest to continue the current visitation. The parents not getting along usually doesn’t constitute something substantial.

What Exactly Is Divorce Mediation?

Mediation is a collaborative process, though it is not the same as a collaborative divorce. Both parties get together to take a look at their assets and determine time-sharing with the children and child support. That’s usually done with the assistance of a neutral third party. Mediation is a confidential process, so nothing that happens in mediation should be shared with the outside world, especially should the parties come to a settlement. The basis of mediation is to try and get the parties to settle without spending money and going to court.

To be successful in mediation, you have to choose the correct attorney, as well as the correct mediator. You’re going to want somebody who is experienced in family law mediation, someone who is able to help you navigate through the asset distribution and time-sharing agreements. You also want a mediator who is going to be a good closer and who can assist you with the process. As I said, it’s confidential, and this mediator will not be testifying in court for anyone.

Is Mediation Right For Everyone?

I would say mediation is right for 99 percent of people. Every once in a while, you have that rare instance where mediation is a waste of time because you know the other side is not going to agree and they’re going to litigate regardless. I usually see this in modification cases. In Palm Beach County, mediation is mandatory prior to getting any court dates, be that for temporary relief or anything like that.

For more information on Family Law in Florida, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (561) 815-8889 today.

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