Myths when it Comes to Child Support in FL

There are dozens of myths, misconceptions, and misinformation that regularly circulate about child support and that’s especially true in Florida. The following are the facts about Florida child support payments and answers the most commonly asked questions.

Age Limits

Many parents paying child support think their obligation ends when the child turns 18. Florida requires child support be paid until a child graduates or turns 19, whichever comes first.


Claiming bankruptcy doesn’t stop child support payments. Even if the parent paying the child support declares bankruptcy, they’re still required to maintain their regular child support payments.

Children Only

The parent receiving payments doesn’t have to inform the other parent about what they do with the funds. The money can be spent for anything that directly affects the child. That includes food, school activities, healthcare, entertainment, and other costs related to everyday living.


A parent isn’t held criminally liable if they can’t make their child support payment due to the physical inability to do so. However, there are still serious consequences for failing to pay.

Direct Payments

All child support payments must be made through the Division of Child Support Enforcement or the money won’t be accredited to the account of the parent making the payment. Paying a spouse directly will register as a default.


The court can garnish checks and unemployment benefits, even if the parent hasn’t been late on their payments but have underpaid amounts in the past. The state can also take any federal or state income tax returns.


Child support payments are not declared as income by the parent that receives them.

Joint Custody

There are two types of child support in FL – physical and legal. Support payments are based on the combined income of the parents and amount of time the child spends with each parent. The state has a formula to determine the amount and who pays it. The state alone governs this. Even with joint custody, one parent will pay child support.

Payment Changes

The amount of child support can be adjusted to meet the evolving needs of the child or in a parent’s financial circumstances. Those changes must be approved by the court.

Tax Deduction

The parent paying the child support can’t claim the payments as a tax deduction on their taxes.

Law Offices of Theodore H. Enfield, P.A.

Whether you need a Divorce, are dealing with Custody or Child Support issues, or need representation in a Personal Injury matter, the Law Offices of Theodore H. Enfield can confidently assist you.  To learn more about how we can help you or to discuss the facts of your case with our attorneys, call 954-983-1443 to schedule your free consultation.

3107 Stirling Road
Suite 105
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312

Fax: 954-983-1536

Email: [email protected]

What Income Sources can be Used Toward Child Support?

The birth of a child is a joyous occasion and parents will be responsible for the health, education and overall welfare of that child for many years to come. However, a divorce can radically change the fiscal responsibility of both parents in terms of child support. Continue reading

Child Support Attorney

If you are divorcing with children, then it is likely you will need a child support plan. In Florida, there are certain guidelines by which a court follows to calculate child support. Although it may seem that figuring out what amount of child support is owed by a party is fairly simple, it can, in fact, be very complicated. Calculating the income of one spouse can take time because, under Florida law, a person’s income includes not only salary, wages, overtime payment, and commissions, but also things like employment bonuses, social security benefits, disability benefits and more. In addition, some couples also must go through the process of establishing paternity before child support can be ordered.

Experienced Child Support Lawyers of Hollywood, Florida

When determining child support, a trial court is required to make findings of fact regarding the incomes of each party. This process can be drawn out and confusing as there are many steps that must be completed.

  • Financial affidavits must be filed.
  • A child support determination is within the sound discretion of the trial court subject to the statutory guidelines.
  • The court can impute income for child support purposes. The determination must be supported by complete substantial evidence.
  • A support award must differentiate between child support and alimony even on a temporary basis.

If you are going through a divorce, don’t assume that the court will accurately calculate your income for child support purposes. Courts make mistakes, and your spouse’s divorce lawyer can make mistakes, too. Theodore H. Enfield is an experienced divorce attorney who has handled child support cases for more than 35 years. He understands the many forms of income that can apply to you when you are charged with providing child support, and he also knows what types of income should be included if your spouse is charged with providing child support. A child support attorney like Theodore Enfield can help ensure that your child support plan is accurate and accounts for the future of your children.

Many child support attorneys for fathers charge exorbitant fees, but at the Law Offices of Theodore H. Enfield, you can rest assured that you can obtain qualified representation without high child support attorney fees. Our child support law firm is focused on doing what’s best for our clients and their children.

Child Support Modification

Sometimes, a previously decided-upon child support or alimony plan needs to be modified, for whatever reason. Factors such as income, living situation or other circumstances may have changed. Before you go to court for child support modification or modification of an alimony agreement, contact a qualified family law attorney who can represent your best interests.

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