Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Child Support

After an order for Florida child support is entered, if a parent changes employment or loses his/her employment, it may be necessary to modify the child support amount. How do you know if you qualify for modification of child support in Florida?

First, there must be a substantial, permanent, involuntary and material change in circumstances that was not contemplated at the time the child support was originally ordered. This means, for example, if at the time support was ordered it was considered that your income would change later, you may not qualify for a modification. 

If you lost your job or are experiencing reduced income, the reason you lost the job or income must be involuntary in order for you to qualify for a modification. So if you quit your job, got fired because of misconduct or voluntarily accepted reduced pay, you may not qualify for a reduction of your support payments.

If a payor falls behind on child support payments and is unemployed, underemployed, or has no income but is able to work or participate in job training, the court may order the obligor to:

1. Seek employment.

2. File periodic reports with the court, or with the department if the department is providing Title IV-D services, detailing the obligor’s efforts to seek and obtain employment during the reporting period.

3. Notify the court or the department, as appropriate, upon obtaining employment, income, or property.

4. Participate in job training, job placement, work experience, or other work programs that may be available pursuant to chapter 445, chapter 446, or any other source.

See Fla. Stat. 61.14.

Seeking to appropriately modify your Florida child support payments may start with a consultation with a Miami child support lawyer. In a consultation, the lawyer may be able to calculate child support guideline scenarios to determine your chances of success in filing a petition for modification of child support in Miami.