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Can child support orders deviate based on high net worth?

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2023 | Firm News |

Child support can lead to disagreement between the parents in a Florida divorce. While there are guidelines in place to determine how much will be paid, it is not set in stone. Various factors can alter the amount.

For people who are lucky enough to have a substantial net worth, the support order can deviate to reflect that. Those in this fortuitous financial situation need to understand both the general guidelines and how it can be impacted by a person having major income and assets.

What deviations might factor in with a child support order?

According to state law, the child support order might deviate for many reasons. With people of higher net worth, the court will analyze their available assets in total. It will also look at what the child might have for their own use as there could be circumstances where they have income and assets independent of the parents. Grandparents providing for them with a bank account or investments are examples.

If a parent has a lucrative business and expansive holdings, the court can look at that and ignore the guidelines as they stand. Some parents’ earnings fluctuate based on the time of year. If that is the case, the court can also adjust the order to ensure the child’s best interests are served and the parents can make the payments as ordered.

Other considerations include a child’s medical, dental, psychological and educational expenses. People in an advantageous financial circumstance could prefer to send their child to a private school. The fees for these institutions can be high and the child support order will reflect that.

Regardless of the parents’ wealth or lack thereof, the support order can also be adjusted due to special needs like a disability, child care, the parenting plan and doing what is necessary to achieve what the court believes is a fair and equitable outcome.

In high-asset divorce, child support will be assessed differently

Child support guidelines are crafted so the child’s needs are met and they are cared for. Since not everyone has the same wherewithal, the support order can be adjusted based on that.

Frequently, this is viewed from the perspective of people who do not earn much or do not own a great deal of property. It can also be assessed from the other point of view. Parents need to know how the order can deviate and what steps can be taken to ensure a reasonable outcome that is fair to parents while serving the child’s needs.

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