Child Support Lawyer in Palm Coast, FL

child support

Child support is vital to supplement many parents’ incomes to ensure they can provide for their children. In Florida, children can receive financial support from their parents until they are at least 18. This money should cover educational costs, everyday living expenses, childcare, and healthcare. But sometimes, one parent may fail or refuse to pay child support, creating situations in which the other parent struggles to care for their children to the best of their ability.

At Chiumento Law, PLLC, our child support attorneys understand the strain and stress that people experience when child support payments don’t come as expected. If you are going through a divorce, seeking a paternity action, or wish to modify your current child support judgment, you have options.

There is no reason your child should have to go without because their other parent refuses to pay.

If you need a skilled child support lawyer to help you pursue a child support payment you rightfully deserve, call (386) 445-8900 or contact us to discuss the details of your case in an initial consultation.

Who Pays Child Support in Florida?

Florida child support law states that both parents have to financially support a minor child or a legally dependent child until they become a legal adult.

Florida utilizes an “income shares” model that allows courts to estimate the amount a parent would have to spend on their child if they were living together in one household. This amount is then divided among parents based on their income levels. Only biological parents have to pay child support. Step-parents do not.

Calculating Child Support in Florida

Florida calculates child support based on the net income of both parents. The state also considers a child’s medical and childcare costs. Child support payments may also increase as a child ages, as older children typically require greater expenditures.

When calculating child support, the court will determine each parent’s gross income. This includes the parents’ wages and salary, overtime pay, bonuses, commissions, tips, disability benefits, rental income, unemployment, Social Security payments, and income from partnerships or corporations. This method gives a more accurate picture of parental income than simply looking at their hourly pay or salary.

If one of the parents is not employed or underemployed, the court may impute a monthly income for that parent. If the parent is unemployed by choice, the court may consider their recent earnings when calculating their income for child support purposes.

After calculating gross income, the court will deduct a variety of costs to arrive at the net income, including:

  • Daycare costs
  • Health insurance premiums
  • Federal, state, and local income tax deductions
  • Child or spousal support paid for a prior marriage
  • Federal insurance payments
  • Mandatory retirement payments
  • Union dues

After factoring in income and deductions and determining both parents’ net income, the court will also consider the number of children between them. It will then allocate a percentage of the net income that each parent must pay for child support. Child support may also be adjusted based on how much time the non-majority parent spends with their child each year.

How Long is Child Support Paid for in Florida?

In most cases, child support ends at 18 in Florida. However, there are some special circumstances in which parents may be required to pay child support past this age. For example, a different Florida child support law applies to dependent adult children who are incapacitated or disabled.

When Can I Request a Modification of a Child Support Order?

According to the Florida Department of Revenue, a parent may need to seek a modification of their child support payments. One way to do this is to submit a motion alleging one or more accepted reasons for child support deviation. This is an option if the existing child support order places undue financial strain on a parent. Florida law allows for deviation from customary child support law if:

  • The child or children have an independent income.
  • The total assets of both parties (parents) change.
  • There is a seasonal variation in a parent’s income.
  • Extraordinary medical or educational expenses apply.
  • There are changes in the amount of time spent with a parent.
  • The costs related to special needs care change.

Requesting a deviation from your Florida child support obligations is not always possible. It’s wise to work closely with a family lawyer to determine if you may be eligible to change a child support order.

Child Support for Children Over the Age of 18

If a child does not graduate high school by the age of 18, their parents must still pay child support until they graduate. The maximum age at which most children can receive child support in Florida is 19. If a child graduates after age 18 but before 19, they will no longer receive child support after graduation.

If a child is not on track to graduate high school before age 19, a parent may only need to pay child support until their 18th birthday.

It is also possible for child support to extend past a child’s 18th birthday if they have special needs. In those cases, parents may need to pay child support for the duration of their life.

Call Our Palm Coast Child Support Lawyers for Help

The experienced child support lawyers at Chiumento Law, PLLC, have assisted families in Palm Coast, Ormond Beach, and the surrounding areas since 1973. Our legal team is committed to helping you file successfully to secure the child support payments you and your children need to live the best quality of life possible.

Call (386) 445-8900 or contact us now for a consultation. We look forward to learning more about your situation and discussing how we can help.

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Chiumento Law, PLLC has contributed to schools and other organizations that have made a difference in the community and take pride in portraying an active role in our community. Flagler and Volusia Counties hosts an array of events and we are proud to be a part of many of them!

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Palm Coast

Chiumento Law, PLLCAttorneys At Law

Palm Coast

145 City Pl #301
Palm Coast, Florida 32164
United States (US)
(386) 753-3293
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Ormond Beach

Chiumento Law, PLLCAttorneys At Law

Ormond Beach

57 W. Granada Blvd.
Ormond Beach, FL 32174
United States (US)
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