Child Support from Puerto Rico to Florida: Know 2 Details

Child support from Puerto Rico to Florida or from Florida to Puerto Rico is tricky. If you have child support and are confused about how to go about it, this article will help you know two significant facts about child support from Puerto Rico to Florida. To know them, keep reading further.

child support from puerto rico to florida

Child Support from Puerto Rico to Florida: Know 2 Details

First of all, I want to share the story of my friend Jessey regarding this point.  After the divorce, her husband is living in Puerto Rico, and she is living in Florida. Jessey has two children from this marriage. Court ordered her husband to pay child support to her though he tried to protect the money from child support. But as he is living in Puerto Rico, Jessey does not understand how to receive child support from Puerto Rico to Florida.

While suggesting Jessey, I discussed two topics on this issue. If you are in  Florida and your ex-spouse is in Puerto  Rico, you need to know them.

#1. Can I transfer a child support case from Puerto Rico to Florida?

Transferring a child support case from Puerto Rico to Florida is possible. The process will involve both family law courts in the two territories and may also require the approval of government agencies as well. 

It is essential that all applicable laws and regulations are followed throughout the transfer process. Additionally, when filing for a change of venue, you should provide all the necessary documents in both English and Spanish. An experienced family law attorney can help you navigate these steps and ensure that your case is properly transferred.

If a child support case has already been established from Puerto Rico to Florida, or the court involved does not approve of transferring it, the parent paying child support should seek legal advice on how to proceed. The best course of action in such a situation is likely to be determined by an experienced family law attorney who understands the complexities of transferring child support cases between different jurisdictions.

A child support case transfer can also involve other factors, such as filing for modifications or establishing jurisdiction over the paying parent’s assets. That is why it is important to seek experienced legal advice so that all your rights and responsibilities are considered. With the right help, you can ensure that your child support case is transferred properly without any delays or complications.

#2. Can Florida child support court order be enforced in Puerto Rico?

Jessy asked me exactly, “I have a child support court order against my ex-husband in Florida. Last week, he moved to Puerto Rico. Now, can I enforce a child support order in Puerto Rico?”

Yes, child support orders from Florida can be enforced in Puerto Rico. According to the CHAPTER 115–EVIDENCE; DOCUMENTARY, Sec. 1738B, Puerto Rico is considered a state US. So, child support court orders from Florida can be enforced in Puerto Rico.

According to The Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, a Florida child support court order can be enforced in Puerto Rico. This law allows states to extend the reach of their courts and enforce orders regarding child support in other states. 

This means that if one parent lives in Florida and the other parent lives in Puerto Rico, the Florida court has jurisdiction to issue an order, and the Puerto Rican court has jurisdiction to enforce it. Additionally, all states must recognize and enforce other states’ child support orders in accordance with the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution, as there are no ways to refuse child support.

Therefore, if a Florida court issues an order for a parent to pay child support, that order is legally binding on both parents and must be followed.  If a parent fails to comply with the court’s order, they may be subject to additional penalties such as wage garnishment or property liens.

If you need to, you can even modify the child support order. To do this process smoothly and with fewer hitches, it is recommended that you seek the help of a child support lawyer who has experience in similar cases in both jurisdictions. Another option is to go through the court system in Florida.

So, if you cannot enforce your child support order or modify it directly through the courts, you can use this law to get help in enforcing child support orders between different states.

This video might help you to know more about how to enforce child support against an out-of-state parent:

FAQs on Child Support from Puerto Rico to Florida

Does Florida enforce out-of-state child support?

Florida is a leader in enforcing out-of-state child support. Under the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, the state can enter into agreements with other states or countries to ensure that non-custodial parents fulfill their duty to support a minor child no matter where they reside or move.

As part of this law, Florida has established special procedures to quickly collect payments made by an out-of-state obligor who fails to meet their court-ordered obligations.

Furthermore, agencies within the state have a range of tools available to enforce court orders and accelerate payment, including wage assignments and scope examinations. Ultimately, Florida is equipped to handle out-of-state child support cases seamlessly.

What is the average child support payment for one child in Florida?

The exact amount of child support will depend on your circumstances and the specific terms of your court order. However, the average child support payment for one child in Florida is approximately $250 per month. The amount is determined by considering factors such as the gross monthly income of each parent, the number of children, the cost of health insurance, childcare costs, and other factors. The court will also consider the child’s needs when determining the amount. 

A parent earning less than $650 a month is legally required to pay $74 per month in child support to care for their single child. For those making more than that, payments may be higher depending on the court ruling; typically, payment ranges can vary between 5-20% of their monthly income.

Other financial responsibilities such as healthcare coverage and paying for other material necessities can also be included in this type of payment structure, helping to provide much-needed stability and security to both the parent and their child.

How long does child support last in Puerto Rico?

In Puerto Rico, the law requires that child support be paid until the child reaches age 21 unless both parents have agreed upon other arrangements. This amount is set according to how much each parent earns and is used to ensure that the needs of their children can be met.

It’s essential for parents in Puerto Rico to understand their roles and responsibilities when it comes to providing financial assistance as required by law to ensure that their children are adequately taken care of beyond age 21.

It’s also important for them to remember that if circumstances arise that may require modification of a child support arrangement, both parties must agree for any changes to take effect.

How does Florida enforce child support?

Florida has a robust system to ensure that children receive the financial support they need from their non-custodial parents. All parties liable for child support must pay an amount set by the court based on an obligor’s income and other factors.

If an obligor’s financial situation changes, they are expected to notify the court and state agency so that the payment amount can be adjusted as necessary. When someone fails to meet their obligation, Florida has multiple enforcement tools, such as intercepting federal tax refunds, suspending licenses, and reporting delinquencies to credit bureaus.

They also can seize assets held in bank accounts or file liens against personal property. Ultimately, all enforcement tactics aim to get the payments current, thus providing stability for children when they need it most.

Can Florida child support suspend your license in another state?

Florida child support can suspend a person’s license in another state if they do not pay their child support debt. The parent must have an active child support case in Florida, and the invoking state must have agreed to be bound by the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, otherwise known as UIFSA.

Upon finding that a parent has fallen behind on their payments, the issuing court may file a motion to suspend the parent’s driver’s license or another effectual method of identification outside of the state, including those from different countries.

This process is complex and requires legal guidance from experienced attorneys familiar with both UIFSA and interstate jurisdictional laws.

What happens in Florida if you don’t pay child support?

There can be serious legal consequences if you fail to pay child support in Florida. You may be fined by the court, have a lien placed on your property, or have deductions taken out of your paycheck. Failure to pay can also lead to a bench warrant being issued, and you could face jail time until the payments are made.

Additionally, there is an inability to travel outside of the country if back payments are owed, so you will not be able to obtain a passport or visit other countries. Not paying your child support is a big deal in Florida, and ignoring the problem will not make it disappear.

Can child support be forgiven in Florida?

In Florida, the law provides that child support payments can be forgiven under certain circumstances. In extreme cases, it may be possible for a court to acquit or waive past-due child support in part or in whole if the paying parent can demonstrate significant financial hardship and evidence of change in circumstance.

Also, parents who have neglected to make their payments due to incarceration may also file a motion that allows the court to either reduce or temporarily suspend payments until the parent can provide for them later.

Ultimately, when considering any potential forgiveness of child support payments, it is always important to seek legal advice from an experienced attorney with knowledge of family law.

Does Puerto Rico have child support?

Puerto Rico certainly has laws to protect families with children and ensure that the non-custodial parent is held accountable for financially supporting their child.

According to the Puerto Rico Department of Family Affairs, both parents are responsible for ensuring that their children have adequate financial resources to meet their needs. The island offers numerous programs, such as subsidized daycare and healthcare benefits, specifically designed to provide financial relief and assistance to families where one or both parents may be unable to contribute.

They also assist in establishing child support orders, enforcing and monitoring payments, and collecting overdue amounts between custodial and non-custodial parties. In essence, Puerto Rico is working hard to ensure a solid foundation for all its citizens through effective child support regulations.

Which state has the highest child support?

Every state sets its own guidelines for child support, and those fees can range from very low to very high, depending on the state in question. In the United States, Massachusetts has been long considered to have the highest average cost of child support that parents are expected to pay.

This is because Massachusetts and California have income-based guidelines for determining what a parent must pay for supporting any children of divorce or court-ordered custody. These states require both parents to contribute an appropriate amount based on their respective incomes and other factors, such as the number of children who need support.

These high standards come at an increased cost compared to other states, making Massachusetts rightfully the leader in child support payments due.


The process of child support from Puerto Rico to Florida, or vice versa, can be difficult. The aforementioned facts should help you understand the concept better. If you need more clarity or assistance, seek legal counsel from an experienced attorney.

About Shakir Ahmed

Head of the editorial team. I hold a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) from UoL. Written hundreds of articles on divorce, child custody, employment and other human rights law topics for blogs and websites worldwide. Worked 6 years as a relationship development trainer. For any communication regarding any legal matter, please feel free to email me at

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