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"I Have a New Baby to Support. Can I Get My Child Support Obligation for My Older Child Lowered?"

Congratulations! However, the answer is: Generally, no, a subsequent child is not cause for lowering your child support obligation. Public policy in the state of Florida is that parents have a fundamental obligation to support their minor children. Once your child support obligation is set, if you ask for it to be lowered, you must show the court a substantial, material, and unanticipated change of circumstances has occurred. Subsequent children generally do not qualify as a “change in circumstances” such that you qualify to have your obligation reduced. That you have another child does not lessen your obligation to support the first child. The way the court sees it, when you made the decision to have a second child, you knew that you already had one child to support. The state of Florida does not take away from the first child’s mouth to feed the next child. If you have subsequent children, you will have to continue to pay the child support ordered for the first child, in addition to providing for the new child.

There are exceptions to the rule. As mentioned above, if you want to get your child support lowered, you have to show a substantial, material, and unanticipated change of circumstances has occurred. While having another child generally does not qualify, having a child with special needs, or having twins or triplets may be something that would qualify as a reason to have your child support lowered. If you think you qualify for a reduction in your child support obligation on this basis, call DADvocacy to set up an initial consultation with an experienced child support attorney in Miami at (305) 363-6171.