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Who has jurisdiction in child support case originated in Florida - one party in Ohio, one in Arizona now?

Cleveland, OH |

The child support was ordered in Florida. My boyfriend moved to Ohio and his ex moved to Arizona. She incorrectly reported his income when she was still in Florida and they think he is making 2x as much as he really is, so they said he's in arrears $10,000 and are garnishing 60% of what they think he is making. We are trying to modify the order to show what he actually makes but are having trouble since it's in another state. Does the state of Florida even have jurisdiction still since neither party lives there anymore?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Im a North Carolina divorce attorney, and any domestic order entered in one state allows that state to retain jurisdiction until further order. Florida may be your best bet anyway as I doubt the wife has any ties with Arizona so filing an action there may be fruitless.

    Discuss it with a local divorce attorney.

    The information contained in this response is general information and is not legal advice. Nothing contained in this response should be construed as legal advice or creating an attorney-client relationship between the attorney and the reader. An attorney-client relationship may only be created by express representation agreement between Glenn Doyle of Doyle & Doyle, PA and Client.


  2. Typically, jurisdiction remains with the court that issued the orders irrespective of where the parties reside. I have had matters where the original court would not hear anything on child support if both parents had moved out of state.

    The first thing to do is obtain a consultation with a Florida attorney and see if they can file to modify the support. If not, then the case needs to be transferred to either Ohio or Arizona. Once transferred, the support can be modified. In my experience when determining whether to accept a matter the local courts will look at where the parents are and where the child is. Be prepared for the matter to be transferred to where the child is living.

    Also, be advised that at least in Ohio, a support order continues until it is modified or it terminates. Thus if the order is out of line with the income the arrearage will continue to grow. I have not seen a retroactive order modifying past due support. So, act promptly.


  3. I agree with both prior answers. You are probably better off in Floride then in Arizona. In any case you need to consult a Florida attorney and act quickly.

    Attorney Sternberg is admitted to the practice of law only in the State of Ohio. His answering of this question does not constitute an attorney client relationship, nor can his answer be relied on since the question does not permit Attorney Sternberg to seek additional information necessary to render an legal opinion.

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