Best California Child Support Guide
When going through a divorce, one of the most important sets of guidelines to understand are those related to child support.
Child support guidelines in California are comprehensive and can be difficult to understand. The internet is full of articles that can easily synthesize these guidelines, and can also confuse you even further. Let’s dive in with this quick California Child Support Guide we have put together to better understand how the law works. The main points of California child support law can be summed up via the statute California Family Code 4053. This section of the law stipulates that all decisions around child support must be made with the child’s best interest in mind. Among these details are:
- Child support is an important obligation that the parents need to meet
- Child support is a mutual obligation between both parents
Altering Child Support Values
Because child support orders are generated through a computer, it is important to ensure that the values are correct. However, there are some ways in which the assigned values may be changed.
- If both parents agree to the paying of a different amount than the support order suggests
- If the value of the property in which the child is living requires more than the assigned child support amount to maintain
- The income of the parent is in excess of the amount necessary to sustain the needs of the child
Apart from the ones listed above, there are other circumstances in which the assigned child support value might be changed
- Parents have different custody arrangements for different children
- Parents have equal custody arrangements for the children, but the difference in income and housing expenses between the parents is great
- The child has medical expenses in excess of the assigned child support amount
- It is discovered that the child has more than two parents
The Child Support Process
Obtaining child support in the state of California is a multi-step process.
- The income and expense declaration must be filled out. It is imperative that this document is filled out properly so as not to delay the request or cause it to be denied
- The request for support order must be served to the applicable party
- Once they are served with the order, the applicable party has a deadline of approximately nine days to respond to the order
- The child support hearing takes place. If you find yourself in this situation, it is highly recommended that you retain a knowledgeable attorney, so please hire one.
If either parent wishes to modify a child support order that is at or above the child support guideline amount in the state of California, they must show proof of a change in circumstance to be granted a modification. If the amount is below the California state guideline, the parent can request the modification anytime, and does not have to show proof of a change of circumstance.
A Final Word
Child support laws are complex, and the California state laws are no exception. But thanks to this Child Support Guide, and proper representation you will be able to navigate these murky legal waters.