In California, all parents have a duty to provide financial support for their children. Unfortunately, however, some parents do not agree on what constitutes an appropriate amount of support, and in some instances, a court order is required to impose an obligation on a parent to provide support for a child. Determining an appropriate child support obligation is critical for both the welfare of the child and the financial security of the parent who is obligated to pay the support. If you wish to seek child support or have been served with papers instituting an action for child support, the San Jose child support lawyers at Daprile-Bell Family Law Offices can gather the evidence needed to help you strive for a favorable result. We regularly represent people who work for tech companies (or their spouses) from Santa Clara and Santa Cruz CountiesCalifornia Child Support Guidelines
Typically, a parent has an obligation to financially support his or her child until the child turns 18, unless the child is still in high school at that time, in which case the obligation continues until the child reaches the age of 19 or completes 12th grade. In cases in which a child is incapacitated, a support obligation may continue after the child reaches adulthood. In addition to financial support, a child support order may require a parent to pay for health care expenses, travel expenses to transport the child from one parent’s home to the other parent’s home, the child’s educational needs, and any other distinctive needs.
California has enacted statewide guidelines that courts must use in determining child support obligations. The child support attorneys at our San Jose firm can explain how the child support guidelines likely will apply in your case. In some instances, a court may deviate from the guidelines, but only if it can explain why such a deviation is warranted. Generally, under the guidelines, a court will assess how much each parent earns through employment and any other source of income and whether either parent has mandatory union dues or retirement contributions. The court will also weigh each parent’s tax filing status, whether the child receives support from any other party, how many children the parties mutually parent, and how much time the child spends with each parent. Finally, the court will evaluate the cost of health insurance for the child, uninsured health care costs, day care costs, and any other relevant factors. We are very adept at the use of stock in calculating support and many of our clients have restricted stock units or other stock as part of their compensation.Calculating Child Support
Essentially, pursuant to the guidelines, a court will calculate a child support obligation by using the income of the parents and the time that the child spends with each parent. The income used is the net disposable income of each parent, which is income after taxes and necessary deductions have been withdrawn. Our San Jose child support attorneys can help you estimate this amount. While the court can count commissions, bonuses, stock, and other non-wage earnings in determining income, it cannot consider income from certain sources, such as Supplemental Security Income. After the court determines the income of each parent, the court will calculate the amount of time that each parent spends with the child, and it then will perform a calculation to determine the appropriate amount of support, using each parent’s income and the time spent with the child.Retain a Trusted Family Law Attorney
In many instances in which the parents of a child do not live together, one parent will be ordered to pay the other parent child support. If you are involved in a dispute over child support, it is prudent to speak to an attorney to discuss your available options. At Daprile-Bell Family Law Offices, we are mindful of the financial and emotional stress that family law disputes can cause. It is critical for us to help maintain the health of our clients, and in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we wear masks, provide our clients with seating on our front porch so that they can wait for their appointments with minimal contact with other parties, and frequently sterilize our common areas and offices. The child support lawyers at our San Jose firm also provide our clients with the option of meeting via Zoom, and we take care to stagger any meetings conducted in the office. You can contact us through our online form or at (408) 918-0920 to set up a meeting.