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How Does Health Insurance Affect Child Support

September 13, 2017

 

Child support is governed by Chapter 61 of the Florida Statues. When calculating child support figures, the Court considers several factors, including the income of the parents. Upon establishing the parties gross income, certain allowable deductions are made to establish net income. These deductions include, but are not limited to: taxes, mandatory retirement & union dues and . . . the topic of this article HEALTH INSURANCE. 

 

Health Insurance is factored in child support in two ways:

- Health Insurance paid for the benefit the parent & 

- Health insurance paid for the benefit of the minor child(ren)

 

Parent's: Health Insurance: Some believe the net income of the parent is the amount the parent takes home, however not all deductions on a parent's paycheck is an "allowable deduction" for the purpose of determining child support. One of the allowable deductions is health insurance. The portion of health insurance paid for the benefit of the parent is used to reduce the gross income.  Once the net incomes of both parents are determined, along with the number of overnights, the basic child support numbers are determined. However, health insurance comes into play once more.

 

 

Minor Child(ren)'s Health Insurance: The law states that all child support orders shall have a provision for health insurance for minor child(ren) when the insurance is "reasonable in cost and accessible to the child." There is a presumption that health insurance is reasonable if it is no more than 5% of the gross income of the parent providing coverage. The courts may exceed 5%, however they must make specific findings of facts to explain its reasoning.  The cost of health insurance for the minor child(ren) is added to the basic child support. Additionally, health non-covered medical, dental, and prescription medication expenses of the child(ren) are added to the basic support obligation, unless these expenses have been ordered to be paid on a percentage basis. After the health insurance costs are added to the basic obligation, any moneys prepaid by a parent for health-related costs for the child or children of this action shall be deducted from that parent’s child support obligation for that child/children.

 

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