Studies have shown that children are increasingly being born into single parent homes, and other research also indicates that a lack of resources may lead to significant problems for them. About 40 percent of children around the country are born to parents who are not married. While a small number of these parents will get married or otherwise live together, the majority of those children are raised by one parent.
While California already allows modification of child support payments if necessary for people who are incarcerated, the Obama administration is moving to make it possible for prisoners in all states to change their child support obligations when they are behind bars. This is part of the administration's overall efforts at prison reform.
Like many other states, California uses the income shares model to calculate child support orders. If two divorced or separated parents cannot reach a child support agreement outside of court, a judge will calculate monthly child support payments using both parents' incomes, the number of children and the children's anticipated expenses.
California residents who are fans of musician Stevie J may have read that the "Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta" star will be going to trial for a child support issue. He reportedly owes back child support totaling $1.1 million for his 18-year-old son and 17-year-old daughter.
California Family Code Section 4055 sets forth child support guidelines that the court and the state's Department of Child Support Services must follow. The law also provides a mathematical formula for calculating child support amounts. The most important elements of the formula are the incomes of the parents, how much time they are responsible for their children and the number of kids involved.
Being a parent is a lifelong role. But it is also a role that changes constantly. Parental duties and responsibilities can shift considerably as a child grows and his or her needs change. Depending on the age of a child, a parent may need to be a provider, disciplinarian, coach, mentor, caretaker, cook, chauffeur, advocate, protector and financial adviser on any given day.
Divorce can be a bitter, painful process. Thankfully, it doesn't last forever and there will be a time when the divorce proceedings are not a regular and pervasive part of your day. For the most part, the issues of a divorce can be resolved and you won't have to deal with them again.
Under California law, both parents have an obligation to provide financial support their children, but only one parent actually writes the check for practical reasons. All courts across California use the same child support guidelines, with the same factors, to calculate the amount one parent will pay to the other.
Parents generally understand the importance of being involved in their child's life. They know that their physical, emotional and financial support is crucial to the well-being of their child and take that responsibility very seriously.
The topic of child support can be one of contention, bitterness and misinformation. Because of how child support can be portrayed in the media and entertainment, it can be easy to think that child support is punishment for the paying parent and free money for the receiving parent. These misconceptions can turn any discussion about child support into a battle.