Tampa, FL – When one parent does not have primary custody of their child, they will be required by the state to make support payments. In Florida, this is usually based on a percentage of the parent’s income to ensure that they will be able to actually make the payments as long as they are employed. 

Finding the couple’s net income

When a couple needs to calculate these payments, the first thing that they should do is to list the income of both parents. The net income that includes gross pay minus deductions is what should actually be used. Usually taxes and health insurance count as bona fide deductions. For many couples, it is sufficient to take the annual net income and divide it by twelve to get a monthly net income amount. 

Costs of required care

Florida law requires the parents to factor in costs of healthcare and childcare, which will include daycare costs for times when both parents are working if necessary. Health insurance is one of the most significant costs in this step. 

Shared time between parents

Each parent will essentially have custody for a certain percentage of the month based on their custody plan. Calculating this amount can become a bit more complex, as the payments can change drastically based on the time that the child spends with one parent. As a general rule, a parent that has more than 73 combined days and nights with the child out of a year will owe much less in support to the other parent. 

After all of these issues are determined, the state of Florida has a standard form that can be used to calculate the support amount. This can be done with the help of a family lawyer. 

Consequences of not paying child support

The state takes a parent’s obligation to pay child support very seriously. Once the parent falls behind on the payments, they may have to pay the past due amounts, or possibly even face more severe consequences like suspension of a driver’s license or even jail time if the problem goes on for an extended period of time. Because of the gravity of the situation when support payments are behind, anyone in this situation should contact a lawyer and try to resolve their past due payments as soon as possible. 

Contacting a local family attorney for help

Anyone who has family law issues in Florida can contact a local firm to get more information about the legal process. The Law Offices of Yeazell and Sweet are available to help local clients with issues such as divorce, child custody, child support, and related matters. 

Firm contact info:

The Law Offices of Yeazell and Sweet 

1901 Ulmerton Road, Suite 435, Clearwater, FL 33762 

727-851-9555 

yeazellandsweetlaw.com

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