Tampa Child Support Lawyer
It may come as a surprise to some people, but regardless of whether your a father or a mothers, in Florida both parents are required legally to support their minor children financially until each child reaches 18 years of age (or no later than 19 years of age if the child is in high school with a reasonable expectation of graduating by the age of 19), or if the child marries, dies, or becomes an emancipated minor. The main purposes of child support is to assist the custodial parent in providing a home, food, clothing and any other necessity for minor children. Child support is designed to provide the custodial parent (i.e the parent who has the most overnights with the child in a given year) with financial assistance from the other parent in order, and it’s also designed to ensure that each child is taken care of financially.
At the Law Office of David Hurvitz PA, we represent both clients seeking child support, as well as clients from who child support is being sought. We can help you to ensure that the child support ordered (or agreed to) in your case is the correct amount of child support that the custodial parent is entitled to under Florida law. The last thing a parent wants to do is pay more child support then they need to under Florida law, or more then they can afford to with their current monthly income.
The custodial parent cannot waive the payment of child support by the other spouse, but the parties can agree in a settlement agreement to have the non-custodial parent pay for other child-related expenses in lieu of child support. For example, the payment of day care expenses, health insurance premiums, non-covered medical expenses, etc… This situation usually presents itself when the parties are entering into a full settlement in a dissolution of marriage or a paternity action, and there are other issues on the table that the parties are trying to resolve in addition to child support. When establishing child support, if a child is born out of wedlock, the mother may seek child support by I filing a Paternity action, or by applying to the department of revenue to undertake a petition for support of a minor child. However, the later can only be used when the parent whose requesting assistance from the department of revenue is using government assistance, such as Medicaid, food stamps, or the like.
Child support is determined by applying a formula (Florida’s child support guidelines) that takes into account (1) the number of overnights each party has with their child, (2) the parties’ monthly net income, (3) how many minor children the parties’ have in common, (4) any payments made by either party for child care and/or health insurance costs, which provides the paying parent with a credit. It must also be mentioned that if one parent has 20% of overnight time sharing with the minor child(ren), this is considered “substantial shared parenting” and is factored into the child support guidelines formula. This substantial shared parenting will usually result in a decrease of the amount of child support the non-custodial parent is obligated to pay. This formula may seem easy to use and ally, but there are many legal arguments as to the computation of a party’s “income” on a monthly basis, as well as the application of numerous “credits” that Florida statutes affords to parents.
Child support has become a tricky area in the recent year and you want to ensure you don’t have to go back to court every time a child emancipates. You also want to make sure the number of overnights with each parent is specified as this is very important for child support purposes. Contact the Law Office of David Hurvitz PA to schedule a consultation and find out what your rights are as they relate to child support.
If Child support had already been established in your case, you may also be entitled to a modification of child support in the event that current guidelines differ from the previously established guidelines at least 15% or $50, whichever amount is greater. In Florida, child support must only be paid until the minor child reaches the age of 18, or if still in school at the age of 18, child support will continue until the child graduates from school but no later than the child’s 19th birthday. However, with most child support orders, child support does not automatically terminate upon the happening of one of the emancipatory events described above take place. In that situation, a party will need to file a supplemental petition for modification in order to officially terminate their child support obligation, and payments that are being made via income deduction/withholding order will not cease automatically.
Unlike some other states in this country, in Florida Child support does not include college expenses or tuition. There is no law in Florida requiring parents to pay or contribute to their children’s college expenses; but the parties can always agree otherwise in a settlement agreement. Additionally, child support doesn’t automatically terminate when the child turns 18 years of age (or 19 if the child is still in school), nor does it modify or terminate automatically if you have two children when the oldest child reaches the age of 18 or otherwise emancipates. In these instances, t’s important to contact an attorney that has experience with modification of child support orders so as to ensure compliance with Florida law.
When the department of revenue is involved, a parent’s failure to pay court-ordered child support can result in that party being held in Contempt of court, and could further result in suspension of one’s driver’s license, garnishment of one’s wages, and/or tax refund and/or jail time. confinement in the county jail. David Hurvitz is dedicated to representing custodial parents to ensure they get the child support they are entitled, and we also represent non-custodial parents to ensure that our clients are not paying more child support than they are legally obligated to pay. We also strive to ensure our clients are given a credit for all funds they have paid towards child support in the past as well. If you would like more information on child support or any of the above, please contact the Law Office of David Hurvitz PA for your free consultation.
David Hurvitz is a highly trained and skilled attorney located in Tampa, Florida. Mr. Hurvitz has worked in a variety of legal areas here in Hillsborough County, Tampa Bay, as well as other jurisdictions in the State of Florida. His experiences have given him a varied and well-rounded background in many aspects of Tampa, FL Law. The firm has represented clients throughout the state of Florida. We are based in Tampa, but we will travel to you if it is more convenient for you. At the Law Office of David Hurvitz PA, we are committed to obtaining the best results for all of our clients.