When child custody or time-sharing is arranged in a divorce or paternity case in Florida, there is a requirement that a child support calculation be made. The parties cannot just pick a number that’s acceptable to them for child support. The amount must be calculated pursuant to the Florida Child Support Guidelines. As one might imagine this is a major area of dispute.

The guidelines base child support on the income of the parents as well as childcare expenses, medical insurance costs as well as the number of overnights the children spend with each parent. One of the major issues of contention is what is considered income for the purposes of determining child support. Under Florida law “income” means any form of payment to an individual, regardless of source, including, but not limited to: wages, salary, commissions and bonuses, compensation as an independent contractor, worker’s compensation, disability benefits, annuity, and retirement benefits, dividends, interest, royalties, trusts, alimony, reimbursed expenses or in-kind expenses to the extent they reduce living expenses and any other payments, made by any person, private entity, federal or state government, or any unit of local government. However, Department of Veterans Affairs disability benefits and unemployment compensation are not considered income for purposes of determining child support.

Basically if you get paid from any source, it will be considered as income for purposes of calculating child support. It is important to note that allowances, reimbursed expenses or in-kind expenses to the extent they reduce living expenses are included in income. This means if you have a company car this can be added to your income as well as Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) for military personnel.

For more information on what is and is not considered child support please contact the Law Office of Andrew G. Storie at (407) 838-0887 or visit our website at www.storielaw.com