Child Support Issues in Florida

Divorcing parents will need to create an appropriate parenting plan that serves in the child's best interests. Ultimately, it is best for the parents to work together to come up with a parenting plan. However, if the parents cannot agree to a parenting plan, Florida courts require the parents to participate in mediation before a court will make a final decision in the matter. Florida also requires the parents to complete a parenting class that is offered in the county where the case has been filed.

Children and Divorce: Evaluating Child Custody & Time-Sharing

One or both parents may also choose to have a formal child custody, parenting time evaluation conducted to determine which parent should be the primary custodial parent and what the parenting time/residential schedule should be for the parents and the child. The custody evaluator is typically a licensed social worker, but may have other credentials such as a degree in psychology. The custody evaluator will interview both parents extensively, meet with the child, observe the child while interacting separately with each of the parents, and interview collateral references.

Children and Divorce: Calculating & Paying Child Support

One of the parents may be ordered to pay child support. The State of Florida has child support guidelines and worksheets/calculations which specify the amount of support that should be paid based on a number of factors including, but not limited to, the incomes of the parents, the time-sharing schedule, daycare and medical insurance costs.

If you are thinking about getting a divorce, or if you have been served with a petition for dissolution of marriage, we welcome you to contact us. We pride ourselves in being both compassionate and empathetic toward any client who comes though the door, regardless of his or her situation. Our clients regard us as very approachable and easy to talk to. We have been successful in settling many divorce cases to our clients' satisfaction, thus saving them significant legal fees that are often associated with taking a divorce case all the way to trial. While we strongly believe that parties should make every effort to resolve his/her case outside of the courtroom whenever possible, we will not hesitate to take a case to trial when the situation calls for resolution by a judge.

At Douglas E. Spiegel P.A., we work closely with you so that you can develop a sense of what to expect during and following the divorce. We help you define your immediate concerns and objectives, and help you articulate your vision of what a successful long-range outcome might be for yourself, your children, and your extended family. At all times, we make sure that your goals are based on a realistic understanding of your rights and responsibilities under Florida law.

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If you have any questions about divorce or family law, contact us today at (239) 333-0500 or by e-mail at

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