Last & Faoro - California Construction Attorney
Find Out How We Can Help. Call To Request Your Free Initial Consultation.
Toll Free:

South Florida Family Law Blog

What happens in a child support dispute?

Facing a divorce can be extremely complicated in some circumstances, especially if there are children involved. You may be contemplating parenting plans, child custody and determining what would be in the best interest of your children. As part of the divorce process, child support is set by the court. The noncustodial parent is ordered to pay child support to help bridge the financial gap children often experience when they are forced to transition to a one-parent household. Although the child support amount is set using set standards based on both parents’ income and expenses, you may not agree on the final amount. Whether there are extenuating circumstances that may keep you from paying the amount ordered by the court, or there has been a recent change in your finances, you may have a child support dispute.

When a child support dispute occurs, you can petition the court to look over the amount and consider potential changes. There are several reasons why you may petition the court for a change in the child support amount. You may have recently lost your job or had a dramatic change in your monthly expenses. These factors can complicate your ability to make your child support payments. Other financial events may have come up in your life that affect your income as well. It is important to keep in mind that factors in your child’s life may constitute a child support dispute, which may cause an increase or decrease in your child support payments.

What is the income shares model of child support?

Children are often unwilling participants of divorce. While you may have decided to separate or terminate your marriage, your children are forced to go through the divorce as well and must adapt to a new lifestyle as a result. Children may have to move from a traditional family lifestyle to living in a single-parent household. They may switch split custody with both parents or spend the majority of their time with one parent. Child support is designed to bridge the financial gap that children may experience when going through a divorce and help to maintain the child’s quality of life.

In Florida, and in many other states in the nation, child support is based off the income shares model of child support. This means that both parents financial contribution to the child is considered. The income shares model attempts to keep the child’s lifestyle similar to what it would have been if the parents would have stayed together.

Addressing your digital footprint in your estate plan

In the digital age, many things that we consider to be part of who we are no longer reside in our home in the form of physical assets. Instead, fragments of our identity are scattered around the digital realm. This might be in the form of a Facebook page, a blog or in articles written about us that are generated in a Google search.

Most of us are attached to our digital identities and we want to address the management of our digital assets in our estate plan. However, since this is a relatively new issue, many people do not know how to address it. If you want to set intentions for how your digital accounts will be managed at the end of your life, you may want to consider the following tips.

What you should know about child support modification

Once child support is written into a divorce settlement, it may seem as though it is set in stone. Yet, that is not the case. There are circumstances in life that may occur that requires a change in the amount of child support paid every month. Child support modification allows parents to alter the amount of child support ordered for several reasons. The income of the parent paying child support may change, making them unable to pay the court-ordered amount of child support. Whether parents become incarcerated, lose their job, get a promotion or demotion, the change in gross income could constitute a change in the child support amount.

Children may have changes in life circumstances as well. If the child has increased long-term medical expenses, such as if the child becomes disabled or is diagnosed with a condition, the child support amount can be modified so that both parents are equally responsible for these expenses.

Are your antiques worth as much as you think?

If you and your spouse are a high-asset Florida couple, you likely own some antiques. Or more to the point, you likely own several, or even quite a few, old objects that you believe are antiques and therefore valuable. Unfortunately, you may be wrong on both of those assumptions.

Unless you are into antiques and collectibles big time, you probably have no idea that old objects fall into the following three major categories:

  1. Antique – something at least 100 years old
  2. Vintage – something between the age of 75 and 100
  3. Retro – something made or manufactured during the 1950s and 1960s

Case presented to Court to define embryos as people or property

Child custody matters in Pomano Beach can in general already be complicated; throw the advancements made in reproductive medicine into the mix and one could have the makings of an entirely new facet of family law. Recent years have seen an increase in the number of cases arguing for the rights of unused embryos harvested for the purpose of in-vitro fertilization. Many of these involve the argument as to whether or not these embryos should be considered children with a right to life or rather as marital property. 

A Connecticut man recently tried to make the case that the embryos he and his ex-wife has preserved for future use should be given the right to live by donating them to a couple also experiencing fertility issues. Initially, he and his ex-wife harvested multiple embryos in their attempt to conceive after their marriage in 2011. The remaining embryos were preserved should they want to try and have another child in the future. However, the pair agreed at the time that should they divorce, the embryos would be destroyed. 

What documentation will you need for probate court?

There are plenty of reasons why someone's estate could wind up in probate court. Failing to create an estate plan or last will could be one reason, as anyone who dies intestate will likely have their estate go through probate.

However, even with an estate plan in Pompano Beach, it is possible for a family to wind up in probate court. Sometimes, the terms of the last will aren't updated, accurate or legal. Other times, members of the family may disagree about whether the last will is fair and valid. It could also be possible that there are questions about the administration of a trust.

Men as alimony recipients

If you and your spouse in Florida have decided to get a divorce, you must begin the process of figuring out the terms of your split. Even in the most amicable of divorces, things are rarely simple when it comes time to divvy up personal belongings and financial assets. Things can get even tougher as you begin to look at your future income and what lifestyle you may or may not be able to maintain with your post post-divorce financial picture.

For many divorced spouses, alimony can play a big role in their lifestyle decisions after a divorce. The person who must pay alimony needs to factor that expense into their monthly budget while the person who will receive alimony needs to learn how to budget and adjust as alimony payments may step down or disappear over time.

Potential alternatives to alimony

If you and your spouse in Florida are considering or have decided that it is time to end your marriage, you might have a lot of questions about what type of agreements you will have to make. For marriages that have lasted many years, it is not uncommon for one spouse to pay the other person alimony for some period of time after the divorce is final. However, the new tax code that went into full effect this year may not make that your best bet.

As explained by CNBC, if you are the spouse who might have to pay spousal support, you would now be liable for the taxes on any money you pay instead of being able to deduct the payments from your tax return. If you are the spouse who might receive alimony, this change may mean you could end up with less in alimony than you would previously have received. CNBC indicates that these realities make it worth your time to consider alternatives to spousal support.

Erratic schedules and child custody

In some instances, determining child custody is very straightforward and both parents have a favorable view of the way in which custody was awarded. In other cases, deciding how to award child custody can be complicated, especially if one parent or both parents have erratic schedules. It is not uncommon for people to work demanding jobs that have unpredictable hours, and this can be true for men as well as women. If you or your child’s other parent are in this position, it is especially important to approach child custody carefully.

Sometimes, parents who face these hurdles are able to cooperate and work out an arrangement that suits their needs and serves the best interests of their children. In other situations, communication may be impossible, and a contentious dispute may arise. Every custody case is unique, so there are many factors that could affect how custody is awarded. Regardless of the options you have, it is critical to do what you think is best for your child. If you can stay on good terms with your ex, this may be very helpful both during and after a custody dispute.