Clearwater, FL Child Support Attorney Prepared to Fight for Your Son or Daughter
Who is responsible for the well-being of your children?
Florida Statute 61.13 establishes clear child support regulations and provides that both parents are obligated to support their children commensurate with their income and the children’s needs. As part of the divorce provisions, the court may order one or both parents to pay a specified amount of child support, calculated using these Florida state guidelines. The guidelines take into account the best interests of the child and various financial factors. In most cases, the responsibility to pay child support ends when the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school. Support payments also cease if a minor child marries, becomes emancipated, joins the military or dies.
At Jennifer C. Harrington, P.A., we ensure that you and your child receive what is required to maintain a healthy, happy home. For more than 20 years, Attorney Jennifer C. Harrington has helped clients successfully resolve the following child support issues:
- Determining the appropriate amount of support needed
- Establishing a consistent payment plan
- Ensuring that payments are made
- Modifying agreements for increases or decreases in payment amounts
- Resolving dependency claim issues for tax deduction purposes
How child support works in Florida
The child support payment process begins with establishing the parenting plan after the court orders custody in the divorce proceedings. The goal of the child support plan is to determine the following:
- How the parents share daily childrearing responsibilities
- The amount of time the child spends with each parent
- Which parent pays healthcare costs
- Which parent handles school-related matters
- How the parents can communicate with the children
If the parents cannot come to an amicable agreement, or if there are issues that could render the plan unsafe or unhealthy, the court intervenes and creates the plan for them at trial. The court uses the guidelines and incorporates the custody agreement and parenting plan to determine the minimum child support award.
Changes in child support
The court understands that situations arise and changes in support may become necessary. Therefore, either party may seek modifications to the child support order. The parent requesting a modification must show a substantial change of circumstances that affects the ability to pay, the child’s needs or the time-sharing schedule.
Get the child support enforcement assistance you need in Clearwater
If you are not receiving your court-ordered child support payments regularly or on time, contact Jennifer C. Harrington, P.A. today for legal enforcement. Call us at 727-787-3700 or contact us online to arrange a consultation. Our office hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The office closes for lunch daily from noon to 1 p.m.