Child Support

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The number of children in this family;

A determination of which parent is deemed the primary parent for calculation purposes;

The percentage of time the non custodial parent spends with the children over 365 days;

The tax filing status of the parties;

Which parent is taking the child as a claimed tax exemption;

Other children not of this relationship;

Wages, self employment income, other taxed and non taxed income, retirement, welfare, etc.;

New spouse income;

Health insurance costs;

Union dues;

Mandatory retirement;

Property taxes;

Property/mortgage interest;

Child care costs;

Necessary job related expenses;

Recurring necessary uninsured medical costs.

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Child support, both temporary (while the family law case is pending) and permanent (out into the future) are calculated with the assistance of a computer program sanctioned by the State of California which program renders what is known as Guideline Child Support. The information to be inputted into the program includes, but is not limited to the following:

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Both parents have an obligation to contribute to the support of their children which is why even a non working parent at some point during the case will be imputed minimum wage income in this calculation even if he/she is not actually earning that wage. And if the now non working parent has the education and work experience to earn a higher than minimum wage, then the court has the power to impute even higher income to that party. Of course, this is a matter of proof and the burden is high.

New spouse income is technically not considered as another source of support income but the amount of new spouse income IS relevant as it impacts the tax benefits of the now married spouse. In other words, new spouse income may result in a tax benefit or detriment to the supporting spouse in which case more or less of the supporting spouse’s income will be available to pay child support.

Child support obligations continue until the child is age eighteen (18) years and graduated from high school or age nineteen (19) years, whichever is sooner. You have no obligation to support your children through college, to pay for their college, to support their vehicles, insurance, etc. If there is a child support order in place, you must pay that ordered amount directly to the other parent or to the Department of Child Support Services if that is the order. You may not pay the child support directly to child and you may not unilaterally determine to make deductions from your ordered child support even though the other parent may owe you money for other purchases.

Child support can be collected by wage assignment or wage garnishment even without that being a specific order. It is a matter right. Failure to pay child support may be punishable by an Order to Show Cause re Contempt in which case a finding of a violation can be punishable by jail time. Child support may be collected by Department of Child Support Services by intercepting your tax refunds, by placing liens on and selling property, by attaching bank accounts, etc. The Department of Child Support Services has the power to suspend your driver’s license, your professional license such as a contractor’s license, etc. Unpaid child support orders may be due and payable even after the supported child has reached the age of majority and child support is ordered even when the other parent has wrongfully absconded with the child and/or is hiding the child from the supporting parent.

If you need help with your child support issue and reside in Riverside County then call CATHERINE A. VINCENT, Attorney at Law to discuss your options today.