Florida Child Support Attorney John F. Greene
Every Client Has Unique Needs
Often, the following issues arise in Florida family law cases:
- Child custody: In Florida, shared custody is presumed to be in the best interests of the child. This means both parents continue to make the major decisions affecting the health and welfare of the child, such as, religion, medical needs and education. If a parent desires sole parental responsibility, they bear the burden of showing that shared parental custody will be detrimental to the child. If you have children, the first thing I will do is help you determine custody. No one knows how to care for your kids better than you, and I will work with you to reach a custody arrangement that works for your family.
- Child support: Both parents have a duty to support a child until the age of 18 or until age 19 if the child is still attending high school with reasonable expectation of graduating. Child support cannot be waived by a parent because it is the right of the child. Child support is determined from the financial affidavits and supporting documentation of the parents with reference to the Florida child support guidelines.
The basic child support obligation is calculated by combining the net monthly income of the parents. Income may be imputed to an unemployed or underemployed parent when such employment or unemployment is found to be voluntary on that parent’s part. The schedule to determine the minimum child support based on the number of children of the marriage is set forth in FS 61.30. Child care costs, health insurance costs and the expense of special needs of the children are added to the basic child support obligation.Each parent’s share of the child support is determined by dividing each parent’s net income by the combined net income. Each parent’s actual dollar share is determined by multiplying the child support need by each parent’s percentage share. An adjustment is made for the number of overnight stays during the year for each parent. A life insurance policy may be required to the extent necessary to protect an award of child support. Support payments may be made directly to the recipient parent, by income deduction order, or through the Clerk of Court.
- Timesharing: It is the public policy of this state that each minor child has frequent and continuing contact with both parents after the parents separate or the marriage of the parties is dissolved and to encourage parents to share the rights and responsibilities, and joys, of child rearing. There is no presumption for or against the mother or father of the child or against any specific timesharing schedule when creating or modifying the parenting plan of the child. This goal is challenged when the parents do not live in the same geographical location.