Child Support

In California, the law requires both parents share the responsibility for the financial support of their minor children. Whether or not parents have ever been married or are now divorced, a child support order is usually appropriate.

What exactly is child support? It is the amount of money that one parent pays to the other parent on a monthly basis so that the children are financially supported, and this amount can include add-on costs such as child care or related expenses. Child support payments usually continue until a child reaches the age of 18 and is no longer a full time high school student, gets married or becomes emancipated. If a child is older but is still living at home, single, in high school, and unable to financially support themselves, then a court may order the child support payments to continue. A parent may also support a special needs child through adulthood.

How is the amount decided? Child support payments are determined based on set child support guidelines. These California guidelines set forth a formula, generally, by computing the net income of both parties, the percentage of income earned by the non-custodial parent, and the number of children. There are a number of other specific variables that can have an effect on the estimate guideline support amount, such as a parent’s tax filing status, imputed income to an underemployed parent, and a deduction for a child from another relationship.

What if they don’t pay? Enforcement can be difficult if a parent decides to stop paying child support. Often times, an attorney can help if a parent has become delinquent with their child support payments by pursuing legal action to enforce the support order. This helps to ensure you receive future support payments and any child support owed.

If you are the parent who is delinquent, we can assist you in working out a plan for repayment of owed child support, or if appropriate, assist you in modifying the support order so that it is more affordable.

Stockdale Law Firm can help. Our attorneys have significant experience in child support matters (both private and working with the Department of Child Support Services) and we can advance arguments to advocate your interests regarding your child support case. In addition, we can review support calculations to estimate what guideline child support may be in your case. If you would like to schedule an initial consultation with one of our experienced Firm’s attorneys to learn how we can help you with your child support matter, please contact us.


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