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When Can a Parent Expect to Stop Paying Child Support?

when-can-a-parent-expect-to-stop-paying-child-supportAlthough California’s Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) is usually strictly thought of as an enforcer of court orders outlining child support payments, DCSS does much more than that to help parents and guardians.

The Department of Child Support Services helps to establish paternity, change or enforce court-ordered child support payments and change or enforce a court order for health insurance and medical payments.

 

Department of Child Support Services 

The Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) in California helps parents and guardians get the financial support they need to take care of their families.

Specifically, the California Department of Child Support Services makes sure that financial as well as medical support that’s been ordered by a court supports families and children.

Child support agencies throughout California work with the Department of Child Support Services to ensure that parents and guardians within the 50-plus county network that DCSS works through are taken care of.

 

Purpose of California’s Child Support Payments 

California ensures that the party making the child support payments and the party using those payments are supporting the welfare of the child.

The state of California takes child support payments seriously. Laws protect you from unpaid, court-ordered child support payments as well as repaying back support.

Child Support Modifications?

The child support payments you receive could be modified if you’ve had a significant increase or decrease in income. Other factors like your custody percentage changing or having another child could affect the amount of child support payments that you receive in California.

If, for instance, one parent went back to work and started earning significantly more than the other divorcee, and the other parent spent more time with the kids, then the amount that each parent paid in child support could conceivably be readjusted to take into account these new factors.

Any Financial Changes? File Right Away. 

It’s important to bear in mind that alterations to child support payments only occur after the lifestyle changes (e.g., one parent’s income increase) are brought to the court’s attention. In other words, you can’t expect to get retroactive compensation.

The above example dealt with an increase in income for one parent, but the same rules apply to a parent or guardian losing a job. You need to tell the courts that you’re unemployed for child support payments to get lowered or possibly eliminated.

It’s important to make another filing as soon as your financial situation changes. Seek out an attorney to help you reduce your child support payments if your income changes significantly, and especially if you’re making child support payments and have recently become unemployed.

 

How is Child Support Calculated? 

Child support in California is figured out based on each parent’s or guardian’s income as well as how much time each parent or guardian spends with the child.

Other financial factors that could impact child support payments include any mortgages that each parent holds or the total cost of child care.

Believe it or not, judges working in California’s legal system rely on a computer program to calculate monthly child support payments. That said, each parent works with an attorney specializing in family law to determine how the parents’ income and other personal factors impact future child support payments.

Child support payments apply to just that – children. At age 18 the support payments should cease. And remember, it’s the parent’s responsibilities to make another filing if his or her income changes.

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Posted by on July 17, 2014 in Child Support

 

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How Child Support is Determined

In California, child support is predominately determined by two factors. The first factor is each parent’s monthly net disposablehow-child-support-is-determined income. The second factor is the percentage of time per month that each parent provides care for the child. This is commonly referred to as the “J factor”.

Income. A parent’s disposable monthly income includes formal sources of personal revenue that are taxed by the state of California and the federal government as well as non-traditional sources of income. Types of income include the following: wages, commissions, tips, bonuses, self-employment earnings, unemployment benefits, workers’ compensation, interest, dividends, social security, pensions, lottery winnings and money from rental properties. The amount that a parent must pay each month for child support is partially determined by the percentage of the couple’s combined income.

Deductions. Child support has more determining factors than just the couple’s earnings. Certain payments and expenses are reduced from these sources of income. Typical deductions include taxes, other child support payments, other child care expenses, healthcare costs, job search expenses, home mortgage payments, required contributions towards retirement and union dues. It is important to note that other child support payments must be court ordered or they won’t be eligible as deductions. Also, the parent must actually be making these child support payments for the money to qualify as a deduction. Parents will not be allowed to deduct subsequent child support payments from their income.

The Calculation. After all the sources of income and eligible expenses and payments are determined, the net disposable monthly income can be calculated for each parent. The court uses these figures along with the percentage of time that each parent spends caring for their child to determine the exact amount of child support payments. Courts expect that a parent who spends more time with the child will incur significantly more expenses. It is quite common for parents, attorneys and the court to run calculations according to the above guidelines and come up with completely different figures. This happens because each party has their own personal opinions as to how much time each parent spends with their child, the number of exemptions claimed by the parents, what sources of income actually exist and which ones are taxable.

These discrepancies are exactly why parents need legal representation. A family law attorney will be able to protect your financial interests and help you keep your emotions separate from your financial and legal concerns. Remember that child support payments will extend all the way until the child turns 18 years old. This means that there is the potential for enormous child support costs over the long haul as well as the opportunity to re-calculate monthly child support payments throughout the years.  An attorney will be able to negotiate with the judge to ensure that certain information is included or excluded from child support calculations. These calculations are run by a complex computer program known as the Dissomaster.

The key to obtaining an acceptable outcome from the Dissomaster’s calculation is to convince the judge to either allow or disallow key pieces of input from being entered into the Dissomaster’s calculations.  To put it bluntly, judges have the power to shape child support payment determinations.

 
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Posted by on April 24, 2014 in Child Support

 

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Seeking a Reputable Child Custody Lawyer for Help

Seeking a Reputable Child Custody Lawyer for Help

Counselling helps either new or old couples to nurture their marriages and grow it to become healthy and going. Along with that, counselling also recommends that somehow couples need to also be apart from each other in order to understand themselves better and if there are faults and flaws, they may be able to re-assess that and rebuild themselves. Otherwise, it can lead to separation or divorce.

Therapy in marriage is also highly required.  Sometimes in a relationship, it is also difficult to deal with differences and gaps. There is a need to understand your own separate needs as different individuals. There are situations when we need much of constructive communication so it needs to be carefully considered so as to be clear. That way, it can give a couple the chances to talk nicely and properly about each other and get a better idea on getting their relationship better.

However, if the couple are not able to patch things up and work things well, that’s the time when divorce comes into the picture. This is a very coarse issue to tackle concerning the children and how will this affect their lives. With this, the service of a child custody lawyer is needed.

Hiring a child custody lawyer is very much different from hiring any other type of a lawyer. This is because in this case, it’s not just about you but your personal interests but the child’s interests. Some of the key things that a parent should consider when hiring a child custody lawyer includes the following:

Firstly, the parent should analyze their financial wellbeing and the cost of hiring a child custody lawyer. Most lawyers, especially the child custody lawyers tend to be quite expensive. So, in case you are unable to afford one, you can always opt for a free or low cost representation via a family court. The negative side of this is that the family court may base this to you been financially unable to bring up your child.

Another determining factor is how complex the case is. Some of the things that may make the case to be complex include if the couple live in different states. Although a parent can chose to represent them, once the case has been determined to be too complex, then, it’s best to hire a private lawyer who is knowledgeable on that area. This indeed increases the probability of you winning the case.

Lastly, you will have to do a background check on the reputation of the lawyer. The ideal lawyer is who has a reputation of winning their client’s child custody cases for no parent wants to hire a lawyer who is doomed to make them loose. The parent should further check the strategies that the lawyer employs in order to win the case to ensure that s/he is a bit ethical. To find the right one, you can request for referrals from friends or family members who may have worked with child custody lawyers before.

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2014 in Family Law

 

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How to Make Co-parenting Work After Divorce

How to Make Co-parenting Work After Divorce

Co-parenting amicably with your ex can give your children stability and close relationships with both parents, but it’s not really that easy. Putting aside relationship issues to co-parent agreeably, having to see each other and speak to each other whenever it is asked can be fraught with stress. Despite being so difficult and stressful at times, it is possible to develop a cordial working relationship with your ex for the sake of your children. Knowing these strategies will make you can remain calm, stay consistent, and avoid or resolve conflict with your ex and make-joint custody work.

Arrangements as to where the custody of the children goes in favor for are most of the time very exhausting that it causes a lot of pressure and stress. It’s just so hard to think of getting past your ex husband who has once meant the world to you. It must be too consuming to deal with built-up resentment. Making shared decisions, communicating with your ex-partner, or just speaking to a person you’d want to just forget all about can seem like impossible tasks. It is true that co-parenting isn’t an easy solution, however, it is the best way to ensure your children’s needs are met and they are able to retain close relationships with both parents.

It will help a lot if you start thinking of your relationship with your ex as a completely new one, and it should largely benefit your children. Remember that your marriage may be over but your family remains. You have to consider what will do best for your children. The most important part of being mature and responsible parent is to always put your children’s needs ahead of your own.

The way to good co-parenting is to set priority on your children alone. Avoid thinking about the hate and the past arguments you had with your ex-partner. It’s normal to think of this as a very difficult part of the process. You have to set aside the resentment, anger, hurt and disappointment all for the sake of your children. In other words, you must take a back seat to the needs of your children. It is hard to set aside your strong feelings to cooperate well with your ex for the welfare of your children, but it is also the most important. Co-parenting is not about your hurt, despair or anxiety blues or those of your ex-spouse, but rather about your child’s happiness, stability, and future well-being.

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2013 in Family Law, Legal Rights, Parenting

 

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Coping with Divorce

No one enters into marriage and intentionally breaks the relationship thereafter. Splitting up is still a decision of two individuals who used to love and care for each other as if they were not aware of the ill upshot after years of togetherness and shared pleasures. Though it is a rapidly increasing condition among wedded couples especially in the Western area where it is prevalent, people who are involved are not easily accustomed to the breakup. It is not easy to live differently from the way you used to live, and it is so much painful to think of the beautiful connection which later on turned out morbid and futile. It must be so hard to live differently from the life you once vowed to live to for the rest of your life with someone who once mattered the whole world to you.  This situation gradually reveals a lot of emotions including anger, anxiety, despair, worry, fear and the loss of confidence.

 During a divorce, it is not only the estranged couples who suffer from this atrocious situation. The children are actually the ones who are more stressed and vehemently damaged by this. This is a sad and confusing part wherein they are likely to feel uncertain, uneasy and angry. But no matter what this process brings, this should and must be dealt well with all due acceptance. While the procedure is ongoing, the parents take the biggest responsibility to let their children understand and accept this unexpected happening in their lives. They should exert full effort to help the kids cope with divorce by reassuring them their needs and providing them stability.

It is normal for kids going through their parents’ divorce to get puzzled and be physically rebellious at some point. But this should never stop the parents to take utmost control of them and prioritize them more than their yearning for their own freedom or their quest for another love. It is understandable that this shall bring mixed emotions which include anxiety, distress and emotional troubles, that is why the parents should at least let the children speak their minds and in the long run explain to them that there are just things that do not last and are not meant to be. It is very important for the presence of the parents’ care, support and supervision to be felt by the children so as not to cause them so much hurt and grief. These feelings shall pass and will soon subside no matter how long it takes. All you need is patience and kindness to your own self so you won’t find yourself  messing up again with what was already done in the past.

 

 

 
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Posted by on August 1, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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