Child Support Myths in Florida

Myths Regarding Child Support

  1. Some people believe that child support is rare. The fact is, divorced couples in the US pay more than $220 billion each year in child support. And the government collects an additional $31 billion annually from parents who aren’t paying their court-ordered support payments.
  2. Another myth is that joint custody negates the need for child support. The majority of joint custody cases will involve some form of support payment to ensure that parents share equally in the support of their children – and that does not necessarily mean that each parent pays the same amount. The court takes into consideration which parent has primary physical custody, the parents’ income, and the age of the children. Usually, the older the child, the higher the expected expenses for education, camp, outings, etc. Teenagers may warrant 25 percent more custody support than younger children.
  3. While many people believe that child support payments are tax-deductible, that is not the case. The parent receiving payments does not have to declare them as income, and the parent making payments cannot deduct them from his or her taxes.
  4. The common belief is that support payments cease when the child turns 18. However, the payment must continue beyond that age if the child is still in high school. And a child with disabilities may receive support payments well beyond the age of 18. In addition, back child support payments can be collected after the child is 18 years of age.
  5. There is a myth that child support payments can only be used for the child. But there are many child-related matters, such as utility bills, insurance, and house payments, that can be paid with child support funds.
  6. Some parents who are tired of making support payments have quit their job in favor of unemployment or lower-paying underemployment to lower child support payments or avoid paying them altogether. These parents will quickly learn that the courts do not permit this and, instead, will continue to calculate the payment amount based on his or her past employment. 
  7. Many couples believe that the child support amount is a fait accompli after the divorce agreement has been finalized. However, legitimate expenses, from medical to educational, may be incurred that the couple could not have foreseen when signing the agreement. And the parents’ income and expenses may also change. Requests to the court to modify the agreement are quite common. In the same vein, a legitimate job loss or change in income will not be held against the parent, and the court may adjust the payments accordingly.
  8. Parents desperate to avoid custody payments have attempted to file for bankruptcy. It is a myth that bankruptcy will erase the need to provide for one’s child. Bankruptcy does not alleviate the need to provide for one’s children. 
  9. It is commonly believed that non-payment of child support will result in loss of parental rights or custody. That is not the case. The court will not deny a child parental time if a parent owes support funds, and the parent who does withhold visitations based on nonpayment is the one who could be in trouble with the court.

Conclusion:

The legal process can get difficult, which is why we always recommend that you seek the assistance of counsel; or at least have a consultation. Schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys today to review the issues of your case, the legal options you may have, and certain rights that pertain to your unique situation.

Have more questions? Let us know by sending an email to: questions@legallotus.com and we will do our best to develop content to provide you with direction and insight!

For more information:
Check out and subscribe to our YouTube Channel
Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook
Visit our website
Shop our Legal Templates

No Attorney-Client Relationship or Legal Advice: Communication of information by, in, to or through this Website and your receipt or use of it: (1) is not provided in the course of and does not create or constitute an attorney-client relationship; (2) is not intended as a solicitation; (3) is not intended to convey or constitute legal advice; and (4) is not a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified attorney. You should not act upon any such information without first seeking qualified professional counsel on you specific matter. The hiring of an attorney is an important decision that should not be based solely upon Web site communications or advertisements. Feel free to contact us if you need legal assistance.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: