New Florida Law Aims to Make Petitioning for Child Support Modification Easier for Parents Without a Formal Parenting Plan

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May 21, 2014

NPO Logo National Parents Organization improves the lives of children and strengthens society by protecting every child's right to the love and care of both parents after separation or divorce. We seek better lives for children through family court reform that establishes equal rights and responsibilities for fathers and mothers.
New Florida Law Aims to Make Petitioning for Child Support Modification Easier for Parents Without a Formal Parenting Plan
By Troy Matson, Member, Executive Committee, National Parents Organization of Florida

Ned Holstein
Troy Matson, Member, Executive Committee, National Parents Organization of Florida
Tallahassee, FL — Bill CS/CS/HB755, passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law this month by Governor Rick Scott, might make it easier for parents without a written parenting plan to modify child support. Florida law sets guidelines for minimum child support amounts but allows courts to make deviations or modify a statutory award based on certain criteria including time-sharing per a parenting plan. CD/CS/HB755 allows greater discretion for judges in child support matters.

Prior statute defined a parenting plan as a written document approved by a court. Although court-ordered parenting plans are common in divorce proceedings, prior law was posing a challenge to never-married parents who exercise time-sharing informally. The new law now allows a court to take into account time-sharing whether or not there is a formal, court-ordered parenting plan when reviewing a petition to modify child support.

National Parents Organization of Florida continues to work to bring shared parenting to Florida and invites others who wish to volunteer to please connect with us.

According to another member of National Parents Organization of Florida Executive Committee, Carl Steppling, “Even if our state government had an infinite amount of money to spend on an unlimited number of programs, it still could not replicate the results that come from two fit parents spending time with their children. Whether it be rates of high school graduation, teen suicide or teenage pregnancy, or if you prefer to measure jail populations or substance abuse centers, the fact is that children from single parent homes (almost always fatherless) are the leading negative indicator.

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Jason Patric Wins Right to Be a Father to His Child
May 19, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
Jason Patric has won the right to be a father to his child, Gus. For almost five years now, the actor has been fighting a lonely fight against his ex, Danielle Schrieber, California courts and California law to be allowed to do that humblest and most important of things — give his own son a father. He lost at the trial court level, but that decision has been reversed by a court of appeals. Read more...

Happy Stepmother’s Day!
May 18, 2014 by Michelle Glogovac, Stepmother and Chair, Executive Committee, National Parents Organization of California
Last week we celebrated Mother’s day and today, Sunday, May 18th, we celebrate Stepmother’s day. As a stepmother of two, I feel honored that not only is there a holiday to recognize women in this role, but the amazing story of a stepchild who created it. Read more...

A Woozle Goes Viral
May 18, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
Despite its serious flaws that led many social scientists aware of the literature on shared parenting and overnights for very young children to dismiss McIntosh et al’s pre-schooler study as “relatively insignificant” due to the insignificance and ambiguity of its data, the thing took on a life of its own. Read more...

The Foundation of a Woozle
May 16, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
Of the eight studies done to date on the effects of overnight care by non-resident parents on very young children, seven of them show either no adverse effects or that overnights are associated with improved outcomes. That leaves the 2010 study by McIntosh, Smyth, Kelaher and Wells. Read more...

Her Woozle Revealed, McIntosh Responds
May 15, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
With Warshak’s and Nielsen’s articles and their massive backing from reputable social scientists around the world came an article in the Australian newspaper The Age by Bettina Arndt that I wrote about here. Read more...

A Short Treatise on Woozles and Woozling
May 14, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
The excitement in the family law world occasioned by two papers – one by Dr. Richard Warshak that was endorsed by 110 eminent social scientists around the world, and one by Dr. Linda Nielsen – has died down a bit with no blood actually having been shed. Whew, that was a close call. Read more...

A Word to Mothers: You can lose your children to parental alienation
May 13, 2014 by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D
As mother's day approaches I want to take a moment to unequivocally state that yes mothers even good mothers can lose their children to parental alienation. One common myth that seems to be "out there" in the world is that parental alienation is something that only happens to fathers and that mothers, because they tend to have residential custody and because (the theory goes) the courts are biased against fathers, rarely lose their kids this way. Read more...


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The opinions expressed herein are those of our guest authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Parents Organization or its Board of Directors.
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"I am very proud to be part of the National Parents Organization, helping to make shared parenting a reality. Children should have equal access to both parents whenever possible. It makes their lives better, and it ensures a brighter future for everyone in this country. Equal rights for both parents, regardless of gender, is today’s most pressing social issue."

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