Campbell Child Support Lawyer
Helping Families Throughout Santa Clara County
Whether you are raising children together as a married couple or single parents, or if you are doing it all yourself, both parents are morally and legally obligated to support their children financially. Getting that legal obligation in place, however, might take some work, especially if you are just now divorcing or splitting up after raising the kids in the same household. Whether you are the parent with primary custody or parenting time seeking child support or the parent who is being asked to pay, the Campbell child support lawyers at Hepner & Pagan, LLP can help ensure your child is adequately supported and you are treated fairly as well. Our Santa Clara County divorce lawyers have years of experience navigating the California child support guidelines and helping parents settle on a proper amount of support. Whether you count on us for mediation support, use us as your legal coach, or rely on us for full representation inside and outside the courtroom, our child support legal team is ready to guide you to a resolution that works best for your family.
Calculating Child Support in California
Parents can agree between themselves which parent will pay support and how much they’ll pay. So long as the court views it as adequate and fair, the judge can approve an agreement reached between the parents themselves. We can provide the support you need to make sure all costs are properly considered and that a proper legal agreement is created that reflects both parents’ understanding. We offer legal coaching to guide you in representing yourself, as well as offer solutions mediation. We also offer full representation when needed to litigate child support issues or advocate for you in court and resolve complex legal issues surrounding the question of support.
When courts determine child support, they do so by using a formula set out in California law. This formula is based on the following factors:
- Each parent’s income
- Allowable deductions from income
- How much parenting time each parent is allotted
- Any other child support a parent is already paying
- Job-related expenses
- Costs for daycare, medical care or special education needs
We can help in this process by making sure all financial information is completely and accurately reported. We can guide you in reporting your income while also making sure your spouse is reporting income accurately as well. Income from just about every conceivable source is included in the formula, and it can be easy to miss something or make a mistake. Individuals who are self-employed or business owners or who make most of their money through stocks or investments might have many different ways to report earnings. Others who are unemployed or underemployed might need to have a certain level of income imputed to them based on their earning capacity. Judges can only calculate child support based on the information provided to them, and sometimes expert assistance is needed to make sure they get the right information.
It’s also important to know that judges don’t have to follow the formula if they are convinced a different amount might be in the child’s best interests. This could be due to a different amount agreed to by the parents, or based on other factors such as the following:
- The value of the marital residence retained by the custodial parent
- Whether one parent spends a great deal more on housing than the other
- An extraordinarily high income for the paying parent
- The level at which a parent is contributing to the child’s needs
- If there are multiple children with different custody and visitation arrangements
- If more than two parents are caring for the child
Note that it is rare that the court’s deviate from guideline child support, but all aspects of your situation can be explored.
Comprehensive Support in Santa Clara County Child Support Matters
Our Campbell divorce lawyers can assist you in child support matters whether you are going for divorce or were never married to begin with, including handling paternity and parentage issues as necessary. We also represent parties post-divorce if the parents’ incomes or the child’s needs change so that a modification to child support might be in order. Whether you are the paying parent or receiving payment on behalf of your children, Hepner & Pagan, LLP can guide you and assist you to get the child support your child needs and deserves.
For help with child support and other issues, call Hepner & Pagan, LLP at 408-429-8336 to schedule a consultation with our team of dedicated Campbell family law attorneys.