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Fort Myers Florida Family Law Legal Blog

The various expenses included in child support obligations

| May 5, 2021 | Child Support |

Raising children in Florida is not always an easy task. Parents need to make many difficult decisions for them. They need to set rules, discipline and try to reason with children who see things very differently than their parents. They also need to provide for their children’s various needs. This includes the basics such as food, a home and clothing, but also can include many other expenses. These can include extracurricular activities, medical expenses, child care, entertainment, gaming systems, toys and many other expenses.

The amount parents are able to provide for their children typically controlled by what the parents can afford. Those with significant income will be able to provide much more for their children. Throughout a marriage the children will become accustomed to a certain lifestyle and if the couple divorces the laws want to ensure that the children will continue to have a similar lifestyle with both parents after the divorce. One way this occurs is through child support.

How child support payment is calculated

The first step in determining the child support obligation is to determine the basic support obligation. This is determined based on a number of factors, but the most important one is the joint net monthly income of the parents and the number of children the couple has together. The more parents earn the child support obligation increases. Also, the more children parents have the more they pay. Additionally, child support obligations will include health insurance and out-of-pocket medical expenses as well as payments for child-care costs if the child-care is required.

Raising children can result in parents in Florida spending significant amounts of their income on their children. This is true whether parents are married or divorced. However, when they are divorced one parent may be paying child support to the other to ensure the child is cared for similarly in both parents’ homes. Child support calculations can be complicated determinations and consulting with experienced attorneys may be beneficial.