Hillsborough County

11256 Boyette Rd, Riverview, FL 33569

Pasco County

2236 Ashley Oaks Circle, Ste. 102 Wesley Chapel, FL 33544

Main Phone

(813) 850-0025

You Have Reached the Family Law Offices of Summerfield Law, Riverview & Wesley Chapel, FL

Florida Child Support: Must-Know Facts

Florida Child Support: Must-Know Facts

Florida Child Support: Must-Know Facts

It can be tough to figure out the rules for child support in Florida. If you’re a parent in Florida, understanding these rules can help you know what you need to do to take care of your child, especially if your family situation or income changes.

This article explains why it’s important to understand child support laws in Florida. It helps parents know how to support their children financially, especially when things in their family or money situation change.

What is Child Support Order?Florida Child Support: Must-Know Facts

A child support order is a legally binding document that delineates the financial duties of parents towards their child, particularly when they do not live together. Its primary purpose is to cover the child’s essential living expenses and is designed to be fair and equitable.

The order includes:

  • Amount of money required for child support.
  • Responsibility of each parent in making payments.
  • Allocation of support between parents and, in some cases, non-parent caregivers.

What Constitutes a Child Support Order in Florida?

A Florida child support order, as defined by Florida Statute, is a legally binding document that outlines the financial responsibilities of parents to support their children. This includes contributions towards housing, food, healthcare, and other necessary expenses for the child’s well-being.

The following is a DRAMATIZATION AND IS NOT AN ACTUAL EVENT: After their separation, Lisa and Mark were unsure how to financially support their two children. A legally binding child support order clarified their responsibilities, ensuring their children’s needs were consistently met.

How to Obtain a Child Support Order in Florida

If you need to establish a child support order, you can apply through the Florida Department of Revenue. They provide assistance with order establishment, modification, and paternity issues. This process is crucial for both married and unmarried parents in determining legal financial responsibilities.

Determining the Amount of Child Support

The amount of child support in Florida is calculated based on several factors, including both parents’ incomes, number of children, and additional costs like healthcare and education. The state’s guidelines offer a framework for estimating the necessary support amount.

Adjusting Child Support Orders

Child support orders may need adjustments due to changes in circumstances, such as income shifts or changes in the child’s needs. It’s important to legally modify the order through the court to reflect any significant changes.

Enforcement of Child Support in Florida

Enforcing child support orders is crucial to ensure that children receive the financial support they are entitled to. The Florida Department of Revenue has several enforcement tools to ensure compliance, including wage garnishment, seizing tax refunds, and suspending licenses.

Legal Assistance in Child Support Matters

While it’s not mandatory to have an attorney for child support cases, legal assistance can be invaluable, especially in complex situations like hidden income or disputes over the amount of support.

The following is a DRAMATIZATION AND IS NOT AN ACTUAL EVENT: Emily sought legal help when she suspected her ex-partner was concealing income to reduce child support payments. Her attorney’s intervention ensured a fair assessment of the support amount, reflecting the true income level.


1. Can Child Support Orders be Modified in Florida?

Yes, child support orders can be reviewed and adjusted due to substantial changes in circumstances. This includes significant changes in income, employment status, or the child’s needs.

2. What if the Other Parent Fails to Pay Child Support?

If a parent defaults on child support payments, legal actions, such as filing a motion for contempt, can be initiated. The Florida Department of Revenue can employ various methods to collect overdue payments.

3. How Long Does it Take to Receive Child Support Payments?

The timeline for receiving child support payments varies. Prompt payment is expected, but in cases of non-compliance, it can take longer, depending on enforcement measures.

4. Is Jail a Possible Consequence for Not Paying Child Support?

While imprisonment is rare, it’s a potential consequence for failing to pay child support. However, this option is usually a last resort, as it can impede the parent’s ability to earn income.

Additional Considerations in Child Support CasesFlorida Child Support: Must-Know Facts

Child support cases often involve more than just financial aspects. They can include custody and visitation rights, which are separate but related issues. It’s important to adhere to custody agreements, as violating them can lead to legal consequences, even if child support payments are delayed or missing.

If your child is over 18, back-owed child support still needs to be paid, as there’s no statute of limitations for collecting in Florida. Additionally, parents can seek to reduce their child support obligations if there’s a substantial change in their circumstances.

For detailed guidance and support in navigating child support in Florida, contact Brandon Legal Group. Our experienced attorneys can assist you in ensuring that your rights are protected and your children’s needs are met.

Share This :
Close Popup

We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By agreeing you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.

Close Popup

Make an Appointment