When parents get divorced, both are expected to continue to fulfill their duty of raising the child. State law in Florida offers a general framework of guidelines for how to establish child support obligation, but there is some room for Courts to depart from the interpretation for judges, meaning you may have the ability to influence how much child support you pay or receive during the divorce process.
The first step is to provide proof of income. Not only should you have paperwork to prove the amount of money that you make, but you should also be prepared to prove how much money your ex-spouse makes as well. Income goes beyond the amount of money you make from your job — it could also include benefits from an injury settlement, disability and more.
You might run into a situation where your ex-spouse is either unemployed or underemployed. If you believe that they are not working as a way of avoiding having to pay child support, you could ask the court to determine whether that unemployment/underemployment is voluntary, and if it is, to assign income to the parent in a process known as imputing income.
Next, you need to be thorough in proving the amount of expenses you’ll have due to raising your children. Calculate all of the child care expenses you need to pay while you are at work, any medical expenses your children incur, educational expenses like school tuition or extracurricular activities and more.
Through a combination of thorough records of your income, your ex-spouse’s income and the demonstrated expenses you will have while raising children, you can better argue your case for why you should receive more child support.
For assistance related to getting the best child support arrangement for you and your loved ones, speak with a skilled Jacksonville family law attorney.
Attorney Andrea Jevic contributed to this post.