A invoice to reform upkeep is being pushed ahead within the Senate

A measure that would bring about a change in the maintenance regulations of the state is passed by the legislature. Senator Kelli Stargel (R-Lakeland) says her bill creates a formula for granting child support and sets a new benchmark for when a child support should be changed.

“With the maintenance allocation, it tries to take the emotions out of a situation for everyone involved and to convert it into a financial decision,” says Stargel.

One reason the bill would allow a person to ask the courts for a maintenance change is because of retirement. Stargel says the bill also allows people who work in professions that don’t have a typical retirement age to turn to court before retirement.

“If you’re in a job like law enforcement that doesn’t have a set date, the law gives you an opportunity to go before retirement and say, ‘Hey, court, I’m of an age to be would be acceptable to retire? ‘ And then, after you retire, you have the option of going to court to apply for a change in your maintenance. But it doesn’t mean it will go away. It’s a change request, ”says Stargel.

Senator Arthenia Joyner (D-Tampa) does not think the precaution is necessary.

“Isn’t it true that a person who retired normally without this bill still has the option to seek an amendment in court just because their income drops significantly? Isn’t it now standard that you can join in the event of a significant change in income? Why do we need to codify now that you can leave when you retire? ”Says Joyner.

And Barbara DeVane of the National Organization for Women, or NOW, says that often the people who receive maintenance are women who left the workforce to raise their children. DeVane says a provision in the bill would allow a person to request a change in alimony if the person paying them receives a 10 percent raise. And she says that for a woman making $ 10 an hour, that would mean a raise of up to $ 11.

“Maybe you go out and find a small job after all these years at home and you are older and there is age discrimination in hiring and you are also way behind in finding a job and keeping a job get a job – and you get a job at $ 10 an hour and you get a raise of $ 1.

DeVane says the women she talks about probably couldn’t afford a lawyer to represent them. But on the other side of the argument, Natalie Sohn says that she finds NOW’s arguments offensive. She says women are not helpless.

“I am a lifelong payer after only 14 years of marriage. I am a doctor. I work 60 hours a week. I support three kids in college. There is no way I can pay my ex-husband, pay for myself, pay for my three kids in college, save up a bit for retirement, and possibly work forever, ”says Sohn.

Meanwhile, Stargel points out that the measure gives the courts plenty of room to make decisions on a case-by-case basis.

“Throughout the bill, there is an option for the court to leave these parameters when it feels best, it has this absolute discretion,” says Stargel.

Stargel’s bill also includes a provision creating the presumption that in the event of a divorce it is in the best interests of the child to divide the time evenly between the parents. The measure was passed by a Senate committee on Thursday. Another measure, which includes a provision to divide a child’s time between both parents, was passed in the Senate.

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