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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 32774
Experience:  16 yrs. of experience including family law.
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For several years, my husband paid child support sometimes

Customer Question

For several years, my husband paid child support sometimes paying regularly and then sometimes not at all. Once upon a time he did have court ordered support payments decided when the children were about 5 & 8 years of age. Altho she always knew where he was, she never brought him back to court. We all live in Florida, his children are now 33 & 30 years old.

Eight years ago, his ex demanded he make up for his lack of responsibility by paying her $50/monthly or she would have him arrested & sent to jail. Altho it seemed like extortion, he has been paying monthly, to "keep peace" and avoid her threats.

He is now on Social Security and I've been laid off from my job. I sent a note with the last check I sent her, to let her know we would be unable to send the monthly payment any longer. She responded again by threatening to send him to jail because there is no statute of limitations on child support in Florida.
Because we live in Florida, will this always be an issue?
Can she have him arrested or bring him to court now?
Is there some legal document we can serve her with, to let her know to STOP this?
He is VERY worried about this, and I feel at 66 he should be able to have some peace.
I'm hoping you can give us some guidance.
Thank you.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 6 years ago.
Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years experience. Hopefully I can help you with your legal question.

He has no legal obligation to pay his ex anything unles he actually is in arrears (late) on support...this comes down to what he was required to pay and what he actually paid. That is really where he needs to start on this...if he owes money, she can try and make him pay...if not, not.

That said, child support is a civil matter...NOT a criminal the police are not going to arrest him...even if the ex calls and demands it.

IF he owes money, the ex can take him to court and ask the court to hold him in contempt for non-payment. Is it possible the court could toss him in jail? Sure, that is possible but not likely. Withe the kids over 30 years old I would say very unlikely.

Still, it is possible, so the best way to proceed is to determine exactly what he owes, if anything, and then he can determine how to best proceed.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

So it is true there is no statue of limitations and she can continue to threaten him?

Isn't there anything we can do to "scare" her back, or something?

Expert:  P. Simmons replied 6 years ago.
Its true there is no statute of limitations in Florida for child support arrears enforcement...if he owes, she can force him to pay, or at lest try to.

As to "scare her"...not sure if there is any legal way for this...he certainly could try and negotiate a settlement with her once he figures out what he owes.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Relist: felt the answer was too generic.
felt the answer was too generic
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 6 years ago.
Ma'am, I'm sorry you feel the answer was "generic". The answer is accurate. I'm also sorry I can not give you the answer you want to hear...that happens a lot since most folks with legal problems do not want to hear the answers that are accurate...heck, I wish I had better news for you...but I guess that begs the question, do you want accuate information or just "what you want to hear"?

If you have more questions, feel free to ask, otherwise please accept so I can get credit for the time I have spent with you.