Common Child Support Problems
Being ordered to pay child support until your child turns 18 years of age can be a financial burden. In most cases, the father is the one responsible for making monthly payments, while the mother is often given primary custody of the child.
There are a wide variety of child support issues which divorced dads must face, from significant changes in finances to trouble cooperating with the custodial parent. Unfortunately, some of these problems have harsh consequences.
The following are the most common child support problems fathers typically experience:
- Getting fired or laid off – If you experienced a significant change in circumstances such as being terminated from your job, you may qualify for child support modification in order to lower your monthly payments. According to your new income, if the Florida guidelines for child support rend a $50 or 15% difference than your current monthly amount, the judge could rule that there is a significant change of circumstances in your case.
- Driver’s license suspension due to child support – If an individual is $500 delinquent in child support, Florida courts have the right to suspend your driver’s license. However, there are sometimes errors in the amount of your delinquency, especially if you’ve been making direct payments to the custodial parent and she delays reporting the payments. If you receive a suspension letter prior to the suspension going into effect, seek legal counsel from an experienced family law attorney.
- The mother continuously withholds child visitation – Sometimes when noncustodial parents are repeatedly denied custody, they take matters into their own hands by denying the custodial parent of child support payments. But remember, child support and visitation are separate issues. If you attempt to withhold child support payments, you could possibly be held in contempt of court, punishable by harsh penalties including jail time. Instead, attempt to arrange make-up visitation dates with the other parent or resolve the issue in court.
- Wages continue to be garnished despite the child turning 18 years old – The Department of Revenue is responsible for suspending any further deductions to your income once your child becomes 18 years of age and graduates from high school. But sometimes, the agency fails to suspend the payments or alert you of any outstanding arrearage of support still owed. If you fail to address the issue, the agency will continue to perform wage garnishments. You must petition to the court for relief.
- The child is not mine – There are cases where a mother attempts to obtain child support payments from a person who she believes to be the father of her child. In order to prove that you are not the father, you can request a confidential DNA test for the price of $175. If the results prove you are not the father and you have never signed the birth certificate, then you are not responsible for making child support payments.
*Review some helpful tips about obtaining your rights as a teen father by clicking here.*
Let Our Orlando Family Law Attorneys Help You
If you are interested in modifying your current child support order in Florida, our family law attorneys at Alers Law Firm understand what it takes to lower your child support payments. We can assess your case, figure out all your legal options, and protect your rights and best interests in the courtroom.
Contact us and schedule a free consultation for more information today.