By Emily GaitanPublished May 18, 2017 09:10:56When Florida Child Protective Services officers in Miami-Dade County, Florida, say “child support” instead of “child” to describe a payment to an ex-spouse, some people are concerned.
But what’s behind the new terminology?
Andrea Gantt is a mother of two children in South Florida.
She says she and her husband have a financial arrangement that allows them to keep their $50,000 child support payments, but she doesn’t know why her ex-husband, who is disabled, can’t get them.
Gantt says she’s been a victim of abuse by her ex, who was charged with kidnapping and sexual assault of a young child and aggravated battery on her daughter, when she was 5 years old.
“I’m an ex, I can’t do this.
I have a child, I need the child to have a good life,” she said.
The term “childSupport” is a new term created in Florida by the Florida Department of Child Support Services (DCSS), and is the state’s official term for child support.
It’s a catchall term for the amount of support a couple is willing to pay, as well as how much is owed.
The Department of Human Services (DHS), which administers the program, uses “child Support” to refer to payments owed to parents and their children, as opposed to the amount a couple pays for child care.
But some say the use of “ChildSupport” and “Child” is inappropriate.
In Florida, child support is a lump sum payment of money that is often split among parents.
The amount varies based on the number of children a couple has, the number and type of assets, and the age of the child.
For example, a child who has two younger siblings might owe $5,000 a month for the first two children, and $10,000 for the second.
But a parent who has one older child might owe only $1,000 per month, even though she has a higher income and also has more assets than the older child.
In other words, a woman in Florida who is paying child support to her ex might end up owing $6,000 after the two kids are grown, but only $2,000 when she has two kids.
Gentz is a single mother of three, who lives in Miami.
She has four children of her own, and has been collecting child support since she was 16 years old, according to a DHS representative who asked not to be identified.
“There are no guidelines about what’s considered child support,” said the DHS representative.
“The best policy is to have it as a lump-sum payment.”
Gantts ex-husband, who suffers from cerebral palsy, was arrested after he allegedly kidnapped her daughter and sexually assaulted her, according the DHS spokesperson.
The agency says she was able to recover her child and the money she owed to him.
She is scheduled to be arraigned next month.
“She was never in any physical danger, and he did not threaten her,” the DHS said.
“She was not intimidated by him, and she had no reason to be afraid.”
A DHS spokesperson declined to provide details about the investigation into Gantts case, citing privacy rules.GANTT says she is surprised she has to deal with “childsupport” because her children are both disabled.
She says she wants her children to have an educational path in school and to have the financial resources to meet their future needs.
She also believes that if her ex could pay her child support, she could be getting better help.
“It’s just so confusing, and I just feel so betrayed,” she told NBC News.
“I feel like if I had paid the child support in the beginning, I could have been able to get better help for my children.”
But other women say the child supports don’t make a difference.
“Child support is really just an accounting tool for what’s owed, and it’s only there for a limited time,” said Melissa Echeverria, executive director of the Florida Women’s Center, which advocates for women who have experienced domestic violence.
“It’s a way for the government to get a paycheck from a parent or a spouse.”
But she says the money paid is more than just a financial benefit, because it’s tied to a child’s education.
“If they’re in school, they’re not going to get these benefits, they are going to have to work harder to get that financial support,” Echeterria said.
Echeverraia says her organization has been working with local agencies to help women understand what they owe in child support and help them access support.
“What we really want is for them to have more resources to be able to take care of their children and not have to resort to child support as a way to get out of debt,” she added.