Frequently Asked Questions

Can Child Support be retroactively modified in Florida?

Generally, child support cannot be modified retroactively in Florida; however, there is an exception. If a parent is ordered to pay child support based upon a time-sharing schedule and that parent has voluntarily failed to exercise their parenting time, the parent who receives the child support can petition for a modification of child support retroactive to when the paying parent stopped exercising the parenting time. The parent receiving child support can ask for a modification or increase to child support as a consequence of the other parent failing to exercise parenting time. 

Can custody/time-sharing rights be modified in Florida?

In Florida, time-sharing rights can be modified by filing a supplemental petition for modification of time-sharing. In order to establish the factors necessary to warrant a modification of time-sharing, there has to have been a substantial unanticipated material change in circumstance since the last order was entered to modify the time-sharing schedule.

Can I represent myself in family court in Florida?

Yes, an individual can represent themselves in Family Court in Florida, this is called a pro se proceeding. The forms included in your package will allow you to facilitate self-representation.

Do I have to pay alimony in a divorce in Florida?

In Florida, if a divorce action has been filed and one of the parties has claimed a need for alimony, that party needs to demonstrate a financial need, but they also have to demonstrate the corresponding ability of the other spouse to pay alimony. In Florida, there has to be a need and an ability to pay and in that case, the court will order alimony and the spouse ordered to pay alimony must comply.

How can child support be changed in Florida?

Child support can be changed through a supplemental petition for modification of child support based on some qualifying factors. In order to request a modification of child support, one party would have to establish that there has been an unanticipated substantial and material change since the last order was entered. This means that either one party’s expenses have significantly dropped or increased or their income has significantly changed to warrant a modification of child support. A supplemental petition would need to be filed by the party wishing to adjust the child support calculation. Our Modification for Existing Child Issues package includes all the forms you need to file a request to modify child support  with the court. 

How is divorce initiated in Florida?

Divorce is initiated by filing a petition for dissolution of marriage with the court. That petition would then be served to the other party, and the parties would follow the procedures until final judgment when a dissolution of marriage would be entered.

What are the grounds for divorce in Florida?

While some states require a legal basis for a divorce, Florida does not. Florida is a no-fault state, meaning that either spouse, for any reason, can file for a divorce and obtain a divorce. Under Florida law, a divorce can be filed by simply stating irreconcilable differences. 

What is a pro se divorce?

Pro se simply refers to a proceeding where one or both parties is representing themselves. The term, “pro se divorce” infers that one or both parties do not have legal counsel and are proceeding with the divorce process on their own. Our divorce packages allow you to enter into a pro se divorce with confidence. All the forms, documents, and instructions you’ll need are included to guide you along the process from filing the divorce to final judgment. 

What is an uncontested divorce?

Uncontested divorce refers to a divorce that is amicably entered into. A contested divorce means that the parties are opposed on one or more issues. Uncontested means that the parties are in agreement on all issues.

What is child support?

Child support is a parent's duty to financially support their child. What is considered in calculating child support is the parent's gross and net incomes, expenses, such as childcare expenses, and special needs of the child. Note that child support is in addition to the time-sharing schedule ordered by the court. 

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