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Photo of Professionals at McCoy Fatula, APC

Understanding California child support guidelines

On Behalf of | Jan 31, 2018 | Uncategorized

Depending on your experience, you may have already overcome some fairly stressful challenges in life. Some types of situations seem to be stressful by nature, such as divorce. There aren’t many people in California or anywhere who make it all the way through the divorce process with zero obstacles arising. In fact, if you do, you should probably write a book on the topic because others will want to know your secret.

It’s often possible to achieve an amicable settlement even if a few snags occur along the way. As a parent, your highest priority is undoubtedly the care and well-being of your children. Divorce tends to bring out the worst in spouses if they happen to disagree about child-related issues. You’ll likely have to provide certain information and fill out several forms if the court orders child support for your children. Not being forthright in doing so can land you in a heap of legal trouble.

Knowing the intricacies involved can help you avoid problems

While parents are typically able to offer their opinions in court, there are also specific guidelines and regulations overseeing the child support system in this and all other states. The following information explains Income and Expense Declaration forms and other child support issues that may apply to your situation:

  • Income and Expense Declaration forms document employment, income and tax information. The court uses the information on these forms to help make its decision regarding who should pay child support and how much.
  • It’s crucial to understand how important it is to be honest and thorough when filling out such forms. Not doing so may lead to perjury penalties against you.
  • Your income after taxes, as well as the other parent’s, is a major determining factor for child support.
  • If you make tips, commission, or receive annual bonuses or overtime pay, the court may factor it in as additional income when determining the amount of your child support payments.
  • Your own expenses impact a child support plan.

If your children require special equipment or supplies for sports or other school-related activities or have medical expenses or need travel money for field trips and such, sometimes the court will order you to supplement funds to fulfill such needs. It’s not all that unusual for life changes to occur that may make your child support payments no longer feasible. The main thing to remember if this happens is that you can’t simply stop making payments until you get your finances back on track.

You can, however, continue to make payments and also file a petition to request modification of your court order. If the court grants your request, then you can make lesser payments or temporarily suspend them altogether.

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