Understanding Child Support in Florida

A mother and her son with a map

Child support cannot be waived in Florida, but in some particular cases, parents can agree on the amount the supporting parent has to pay. It is not something done easily or frequently. While the agreement is subject to approval by the court, a family attorney can ensure your children’s interests are protected by helping you draft it and review all the specifics regarding child support.  

What Child Support Entails in Florida

Child support is a set sum of money the supporting parent gives to the other parent to pay for their children’s daily needs. All of the child support payments are for the benefit of the children, you can look at it from a perspective of help with room and board, if you will, what are considered basic living costs.

Some of the expenses that these payments can cover are the following:

Basic Living Costs

Costs for clothing, food, eating out, transportation, and utilities regularly. This also includes payments for weekly groceries.

Medical Costs

This payment covers medical services and medication expenses that keep the children healthy and is typically paid on a pro-rata basis, in addition to the statute calculated child support payment.

Miscellaneous Costs

Besides costs for basic needs, the paying parent may also be responsible for covering expenses for other activities that ensure a fulfilling life for their children. These include summer camp, swimming lessons, violin lessons, eyeglasses, braces, and therapy just to name a few.  

Determining Child Support Amount in Florida

Florida family courts and generally courts across the country base their decisions on child support cases as per the children’s best interest. Florida has very strict child support guidelines.  Deviating from those guidelines is difficult and usually limited to a 5% deviation at most.

The child support payments are generally per the unique circumstances surrounding each case. In most cases, the support payments are determined as per the combined incomes of the parents and how many children they have. This also includes overnight stays either parent has with the children along with their medical, dental, educational and psychological needs, in certain circumstances.

If the children split their time between parents equally, child support still has to be paid and on time. That is the case because child support guidelines do not only take into account the time the children spend with each parent, but the incomes of the parents. Depending on the circumstances, who pays who child support is determined by the guidelines.  Mothers as well as Fathers pay child support. A child support attorney is in a much better position to advise you on this matter. Just know that failing to comply with a child support order can lead to hefty fines and, in extreme cases, a prison sentence.

Contact Costa & Associates for a Consultation Today

Whether you are searching for a divorce attorney, child support attorney or a family lawyer who can help you draft a parenting agreement that can protect your children’s rights, contact Costa & Associates. Our attorneys have years of experience and resources that can help you make informed decisions regarding their future. We understand how important these issues are and work hard for our clients to ensure the best results. Schedule your free consultation today by dialing 305-827-0100


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