Child Support Lawyers in Jacksonville Florida
Child support is essential for single parents raising children on their own. The cost of day care, food, transportation and other necessities can become quite expensive, and it is difficult for one parent to handle all of it. If you need to secure a child support arrangement/modification and/or are having trouble receiving payments from a non-custodial parent, we can help.The law office of J. Demere Mason, P.A. has over 35 years of combined experience representing parents in all types of child support cases.
According to Florida law, each parent has a duty to provide financial support for their minor children. When deciding how much a non-custodial parent should pay, the court considers the following factors:
- Monthly Income
- Cost of Day Care
- Medical Expenses
- Time Sharing of Custody
- Overall Cost of Living
Enforcement of Payments and Contempt
Non-payment of child support is a very serious offense which can eventually result in jail time. Persons not keeping up with their child support payments can be found in contempt of court. In order to prove a parent has failed to meet child support payments, one of the following must occur:
- There is a valid order for payment which has been signed and approved by a judge.
- The paying parent has the ability to make support payments.
If the paying parent disputes the child support arrangement, he/she must petition the court to prove that there is an inability to make payment. Both sides in these disputes should retain qualified legal representation to ensure that their interests are protected when they go before the court.
Child Support Modifications
If circumstances have changed and the paying parent no longer has the financial capability to meet his/her child support obligations, a modification of the agreement may be justified. Very often modification cannot be agreed upon between the parents and their attorneys. In these cases, a court will be the final arbiter.
There are a number of reasons why a modification may be needed, most often related to an increase or decrease in the paying parent’s income. There can also be temporary and permanent modifications, each brought on by a certain set of circumstances.
- Temporary Modification: This can be issued because of a medical emergency pertaining to one of the parents or the child. It can also be caused by a parent’s inability to make payments due to a sudden illness or loss of employment.
- Permanent Modification: This can occur when a re-marriage adds additional income into the either parent’s household, there is a significant increase in the cost of living, or one of the parents suffers a permanent disability.
When facing issues related to child support, it is important to have an advocate by your side that will fight for your rights and the financial future of your children. The attorneys at Mason Family Law have represented both mothers and fathers in numerous child support disputes over the years. Contact our office today at 904-726-8589 to schedule a consultation.