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Child support can be tougher to track in gig economy

Freelancers can fly under the radar. Typically, when a person has been ordered to pay child support, he or she is reported to the enforcement agency in the home state when signing on as a new hire. This applies for full-time and part-time workers, but not always for contractual workers. Florida families may have a bit more trouble getting orders enforced when the co-parent earns their pay from working gigs. 

The gig economy has rapidly grown, and many people are choosing to supplement full-time work with gigs, or they are choosing to use a combination of side hustles to get by. In many states, this has led to a decrease of child support payments being withdrawn from checks, because many locations do not yet require employers to report contract workers as new hires. Even in states where the reporting is mandatory, some larger gig employers do not comply with requirements. 

Some experts say this is because the reporting requirements have no teeth, and they are calling for tougher sanctions for employers. The state agencies rely on other means for income information as well, such as tax returns, reports from custodial parents and social media. Even when the new hire is reported, often they have moved on from the gig by the time the officials are involved, and no enforcement can occur. 

The best case scenario for everyone is to have a child support order that is fair and works for the parents and the child, so that no one person feels the squeeze. When a person is able to negotiate with their co-parent to find an agreement that works for both, the child does not have to suffer. In Florida, many individuals choose to use the services of an experienced family law attorney for help with this process. 

Source: HuffPost, "Gig Economy Gives Child Support Scofflaws A Place To Hide", Jen Fifield, Dec. 1, 2017