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Facing a Job Loss? Your Child Support Obligations and Options

Losing a job is stressful at best,  but it can be especially troubling when you have child support obligations to meet. At Orlando Family Team, we understand the complexities of this situation and are here to guide you through so that you will not fall behind in your payments. We have the comprehensive knowledge of state law and the strategic legal skills to help you grapple successfully with your job loss while maintaining responsible support of your child.

How Child Support Payments Are Defined in a Divorce Agreement

Child support payments are a critical component of divorce agreements. In Florida, these payments are determined based on each parent’s income, the number of children each spouse has, and the particular needs of each child. The agreement outlines the amount, frequency, and duration of payments. It’s important to understand that these payments are intended to ensure the child’s well-being and are legally binding.

The Penalties for Non-Payment of Child Support

Failing to meet child support obligations can have serious legal consequences. Penalties for non-payment of child support may include wage garnishment, suspension of one’s driver’s license, passport denial, and even criminal charges, penalty fees, and incarceration. The sooner you get in touch with our child support attorneys, the more likely you are to be able to avoid harsh penalties, not to mention prevent unpleasant confrontations.

Reasons Beside Job Loss That Payers of Child Support Get Behind

While job loss is a common reason for falling behind on child support, other factors like illness, family emergencies, wage cuts or injuries can also affect one’s ability to pay. These situations occur unpredictably and can significantly impact financial stability. 

It’s important to recognize that these are valid concerns that require legal attention and, potentially, modification of child support arrangements. It should be noted, however, that while being laid off from a job may be a legitimate cause of missing one or more support payments, misconduct at the workplace or intentional quitting is unlikely be looked at with favor by the court.

How Modifications to Child Support Can Be Made

If you’re facing an inability to pay due to job loss or another legitimate reason, it is time to contact our highly capable family law attorneys. Depending on the particular circumstances, it’s possible that our legal team can request a modification of your child support order. If so, it’s best to take action promptly.

In Florida, modifications are considered if there is a substantial change in circumstances, such as losing a job or suffering a significant decrease in income. To initiate a modification, we will file a petition with the court on your behalf, providing irrefutable evidence that your circumstances have changed substantially.

What Our Team of Family Law Attorneys Can Do To Help

At Orlando Family Team, our family law attorneys are experienced in helping parents navigate child support obligations, both at the beginning of separation or divorce negotiations and as part of an ongoing process that will probably go through some alterations.

Be Proactive: Contact Our Experienced Child Support Attorneys Now

Understanding the possible consequences of missed child support is essential whether you are the payor or the payee, since either way a stop in the flow of funds for child support may have a major impact on your life and the life of your child. While the loss of a parental job can be frightening, it is best to be prepared by knowing the details involved. Get in touch with us now to make sure that your rights and your child’s well-being are both protected.

About the Author
Andrew Nickolaou, Esq., B.C.S., is a founding partner at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A. He practices almost exclusively in divorce, marital and family law. Andrew and his partner, Ophelia Bernal-Mora, Esq., B.C.S., joined forces in March 2016 to form the unique and boutique husband and wife family law team at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A. Together, Andrew and Ophelia take a practical and team-based approach to all of their cases and clients to deliver the highest quality experience and representation.
Andrew Nickolaou

Andrew Nickolaou, Esq., B.C.S., is a founding partner at Bernal-Mora & Nickolaou, P.A. He practices almost exclusively in divorce, marital and family law. Andrew also handles record expungements and sealings. If you have questions about this article, contact Andrew today by clicking here.