The purpose of child support is to help cover the cost of raising a child. The payments are made monthly, generally by the parent with less parenting time – the non-custodial parent – to the parent who has custody of the child most of the time. In some cases, a court can have both parents pay child support.
Child support payments are usually made until the child turns 18; they are sometimes extended to the age of 19 if the child is still in high school and living with the custodial parent. Changes to the child support arrangements can also be made in the case of other unique circumstances. For example, if the child joins the military, marries, or is unable to become self-supporting due to a disability.
California Child Support Laws
The laws of California are generally very fair with regard to the issue of child support. Child support is governed by the Department of Child Support Services. You want to be certain that child support is calculated correctly to ensure that your children are taken care of and that you are paying the correct amount.
The court looks at two main factors when calculating child support:
- Each parent’s income, and
- The proportion of time each parent spends with the children.
Aside from the two main factors above, the court may look at a number of other things such as deductible interest payments on a home mortgage, tax filing status, and health insurance costs. Judges order the same guideline payment for child support based upon the factors above based on a complicated formula. The same formula is used in each case in order to keep things fair.
If you need to set child support or have more questions regarding the same, contact the Hills Law Group for a consultation.
Modifying Child Support
An increase or decrease in child support can be warranted if there has been a change in income for any party if you have a new child, if custody percentage changes, or if the original calculation was improper.
A change of $100 a month seems insignificant and unworthy of consulting attorney at first glance, but this is really a total of $1,200 per year, $6,000 per five-year period, and $12,000 per ten-year period. Don’t be shortchanged. If you believe your child support should be changed, contact the Hills Law Group today.
Reducing child support when income goes down
Have your circumstances changed? Did you lose your job? Are you making less money now than when you agreed on child support? The Hills Law Group can help.
Child Support in California is modifiable at any time, and when circumstances change, the court can modify the existing child support agreement. If your business is down, you got a pay cut, or are no longer employed, contact the Hills Law Group to consult an attorney to help you adjust your child support payments.