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Law Office of David B. Mitchell, P.A. Nav

Matrimonial and Family Law Representation
for South Florida Residents

More Than 34 Years Of Experience

I was ordered to pay child support; how is it calculated?

First and foremost, it is important for parents of a child involved in any type of family court proceeding to understand that the intent of child support is to help the custodial parent raise the child. In fact, in divorce cases, child support should help to provide the child with a lifestyle, at least financially, as similar as possible to the one he or she enjoyed while the parties were married and living together. This is critical for the child's growth and development.

Staff at the Law office of David B. Mitchell, P.A. will tell any parent interested in understanding how child support is calculated in the State of Florida that Florida courts use statutory child support guidelines to determine the non-custodial parent's monthly obligations. Various factors are taken into account by the court in determining the amount of child support. These include, but are not limited to: the income of both parents, day care costs, and medical expenses.

In some cases, it is possible for parties to draft their own child support agreement through alternative dispute resolution techniques such as a collaborative family law or a mediation process. Such outside of the court agreement must be fair, and in the best interest of the child. Attorney David B. Mitchell has not only received training in the area of collaborative family law process but is also a certified family law mediator. He can work with parties to reach an agreeable outcome.

Whether child support is determined by the court or through an alternate dispute resolution process, once it is set, the party required to pay it must do so in a timely manner. Failure to pay child support has consequences. The custodial parent who does not receive the child support has the option of filing a motion to enforce the child support order. In some cases, the non-custodial parent may have a legitimate reason for not being able to pay child support. But, rather than simply not paying it, the non-custodial parent should take the step of filing the appropriate petition to modify the child support obligation. The Law office of David B. Mitchell, P.A. is experienced with dealing with such family law issues and can help file the necessary paperwork.

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