Friday, October 12, 2012

First DCA Affirms Dismissal of Modification Petition

The First District Court of Appeal affirmed today in Van Looven v. Van Looven, a case in which the Former Husband appealed the lower court’s dismissal of his petition to modify child support after repeated failures to allege a substantial change in circumstances.  The Former Husband argued that it was sufficient to argue that the modification was in the best interests of the children.  However, the First District relied upon Florida Statute 61.14(1)(a) (2010) in finding that such an argument could not be sustained.  In short, the root of the confusion was with the Overbey v. Overbey, 689 So.2d 811, 813 (Fla. 1997) ruling.  That ruling centered around the bases on which a court could change child support, and includes in the permissible scope of a such an order a need to modify child support in the best interests of the child.  However, the same case confirms that for a party to request a modification, they are still required to show a substantial change.  As such, the dismissal was affirmed.

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