Florida Divorce and Child Support Frequently Asked Questions

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By: Lenorae C. Atter, Jacksonville Family Law Attorney
latter@woodatter
1. What will I pay in child support?
– Child support is a calculation mandated by Florida Statute 61.30 and is based on the net income of the parties as a whole and the individual’s percentage of that whole. There are things taken into the calculation consideration such as mandatory retirement and union dues, insurance costs of the child(ren) and day care costs for the child(ren). There can be considerations given for special needs or circumstances, but typically the calculated number will be the actual child support to be paid.

2. Which parent will get the child(ren)?
– The court can look at the history of the family unit, to which parent will be more likely to provide for the child’s needs, etc. Ultimately the decision is based on the best interest of the child. While the Courts should look solely to the factors impacting the child, sadly there are still biases that sometimes remain, but those can be defeated under the right set of circumstances.

3. How often will I see my child?
– In Jacksonville, we have 4th Judicial Circuit Time Sharing Guidelines, which sets up the minimum amount of visitation. Each circuit is different, but many have the same concepts in place. Basically, the guidelines set-up alternating weekends, one night per week for dinner, and alternating holidays. Summer timesharing is often switched.