Noncustodial parents in Florida are beginning to band together in an effort to contest their treatment by judges in the state. Groups of these parents and local advocates recently gathered in front of the Highland County Courthouse in Sebring, the latest in a series of protests about the inequality of justice experienced in child support cases. One of the most resounding complaints from these parents is that many judges are seemingly unwilling to listen to the other side of the story.
Some noncustodial parents claim that court officials often seem disrespectful or intrusive. The primary goal for many of these parents is to just receive the fair treatment that is extended to their counterparts. Aside from people opposing court officials who seem biased, there are also complaints concerning the punitive damages judges use against many of these defendants. Many defendants have difficulty with managing their livelihood when facing potential jail time, back child support and a suspended driver’s license.
The amount of child support due each month is mostly based on the combined net income of each parent. Florida courts use a formula to help assess how much support each party may be liable for. The child support payments terminate when the child is married, aged 18 years or older, joins the military, emancipated or graduates high school. The payments typically last longer for parents who have children with special needs.
A noncustodial parent struggling with child support payments or the parameters of their current custody agreement may benefit from consulting with legal counsel. The attorney may be able to help a client renegotiate the terms of the current child custody agreement.
Source: Highlands Today, “Protests held to highlight child support laws, hearing abuses, organizers say“, Pallavi Agarwal, April 11, 2014