Santa Barbara, CA Child Support Attorney for Mothers
Child support is one of the most debated subjects after couples break up or divorce. The State of California pays particular attention to how support is determined to preserve and protect the child’s best interests. If you are in the midst of a child support dispute, we may be able to help.
At the Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth, we have gained extensive knowledge thanks to decades of hands-on experience. Our skilled lawyers can guide you through the entire process. Let our skill work for you on this legal matter. To schedule a free, confidential consultation with one of our attorneys, call our law offices at (805) 643-5555 today.
How Can I Obtain Child Support in California?
Child support matters initiate once a couple no longer lives together, is separated, or is divorced. The law expects both parents to provide support to their children; California law is strict when it comes to providing a child with their needs. For this reason, the state makes both parents equally responsible for taking care of their children.
The California Department of Child Support Services and Local Child Support Agencies are in charge of enforcing and carrying out child support orders, but the court gives the initial order.
Filing a child support petition with the court can be a complicated process since it requires handling multiple documents and providing specific information. During your evaluation process, the court can go over personal information such as your income, your relationship with your children, your ability to support your children, and other relevant information. Once the court has analyzed all the provided data, they will make a child support determination.
Who Will Pay Child Support in California? The Mother or the Father?
Knowing who will pay for child support can be confusing for people who have never been involved in these types of issues. However, it is important to be aware of who will be in charge of this obligation and the implications associated with child support responsibilities.
Usually, the noncustodial parent has the responsibility to make payments for child support. The law contemplates the custodial parent’s expenses for taking care of the minor and makes sure to balance out the expenses among both parents. The noncustodial parent must make payments to support their kids and share in these support costs.
The amount ordered for child support payments depends upon each parent’s income-earning capacity. Usually, the court will look at how much it would cost to raise a child and then analyze the parents’ disposable income to determine how much the noncustodial parent will have to pay for their children’s support.
Where both parents are willing to share the responsibility of raising their children, each parent will spend some time with the child in their house, and they will usually pay out-of-pocket expenses for the child during this period instead of paying child support to the other parent. In these situations, parents cooperate and share time, expenses, care, and other family-related matters, and there is often no need for child support.
In all other cases, child support orders are necessary. Our knowledgeable and experienced family law attorneys can help you decide how much you can expect to receive as a custodial parent.
Can I Change a Child Support Order in California?
There are instances where the custodial parent can modify a child support order. If there are significant changes in either parent’s financial situation, the court may grant a child support modification.
However, this does not mean a parent can stop making child support payments. Until the order is finalized, the payor must continue to pay as ordered. If someone does not comply with the court-ordered payments, they can face severe consequences.
Some of the reasons you can modify your child support order include the following:
- Significant changes in either parent’s financial situation (e.g., higher income, benefits, etc.)
- Any medical condition requiring more child support
- Having an additional child
- The death of one or more children
- Having a child become an adult that no longer needs support
Keep in mind the court will evaluate each parent’s situation to determine if any significant changes merit a child support modification.
When Does Child Support End?
Keep in mind that child support payments will end eventually. Generally, child support is intended to provide support to children while they are under the age of 18. This means, when your children turn 18, child support obligations will stop.
However, there are instances when a noncustodial parent has to continue making payments. For example, if your son or daughter is still in high school when they turn 18, the parent without legal custody must keep making payments until they graduate high school or turn 19, whichever comes first.
California, Child Support Lawyers Serving Santa Barbara County
Going through a separation or divorce can be very difficult, especially when there are children involved. Despite these challenges, you need to think about what’s best for your kids moving forward. Our Santa Barbara, child support lawyers know how important it is to help mothers during this process. If you are going through child support issues, we may be able to help. To learn more about your case in a free, confidential consultation, call the Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth today at (805) 643-5555.