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San Francisco Child Support Attorneys

Legal Support During Child Support Cases

Child support is an important part of many divorces and separations. When done correctly, it allows children of divorce to continue to live in a stable, comfortable household while also not putting either parent under undue financial stress. When a child support arrangement is less-than-ideal, though, it could cause hardships for everyone.

If you need a child custody order created or approved, come to Gill Law Group, PC, proudly serving families throughout San Francisco, California. We can lend our many years of practice experience to your case, so you can feel more confident as it develops. Let us know your child support goals, either as the parent who needs child support payments or the one who will need to pay them, and we’ll let you know how we can help you reach them.

Call (415) 324-6969 to talk to our San Francisco child support lawyers during a complimentary consultation.

How Does Child Support Work?

Child support is meant to ensure both households after a divorce can continue to provide a safe and constructive environment for the child by preventing either parent from falling into financial hardship due to the cost of raising a child. Typically, a court will approve monthly payments to be made by the noncustodial parent (the parent who spends the lesser amount of time with the child) to the custodial parent. Any money provided through child support must be used in a way that benefits the child, too, so it can’t be used for something that is purely for the parent’s enjoyment.

It's important to note that California assigns every parent a legal duty to provide their children with financial support that allows for essentials like food, clothing, shelter, and healthcare. For this reason, if a parent receives child support payments, they are still required to also support their child financially to the extent they are able. In other words, a parent is not excused from this parental duty just because they receive child support payments from the other parent.

How is Child Support Calculated?

You can attempt to negotiate a child support payment amount with your spouse through out-of-court mediation, which our attorneys can handle on your behalf. If successful, you and your spouse can set the child support payment amount to then bring it to the court for approval. If you don’t negotiate or mediate a child support agreement out of court, the court will use the rules and expectations set by California to calculate how much child support should be paid.

When calculating child support, the court will consider:

  • Number of children to be included in the child support order.
  • Number of children (possibly from other relationships) who won’t be included.
  • Percentage of time each parent has physical custody of the children.
  • Monthly income of both parents.
  • Other monthly spousal support or child support agreements that are already in place.
  • Monthly health insurance premium paid by each parent to benefit their children.

When Does Child Support End?

A child support order will usually end when:

  • All children considered in the order are legal adults.
  • Child support reaches its pre-designated expiration date.
  • Noncustodial/paying parent passes away.
  • Custodial/receiving parent remarries.

Each child support case is different, though, so the end date for a child support order will always depend on the circumstances of each case. If you have questions or concerns about how long child custody could last, we’d be happy to explain everything to you as we work on your case.

Can Child Support Be Modified?

Once a child support order is approved, it isn’t necessarily permanent or immovable. California family law courts recognize that life circumstances change, sometimes unexpectedly and dramatically. When there has been a significant life change that impacts the financial situation of either parent, it might be possible to request a child support modification, either to pay less or receive more, based on your new needs. Our attorneys can help with child support modification petitions, too, so you can leave this important legal process up to us.

Enforcing Child Support

Child support orders are made by the court after approving or creating a child support agreement, so they carry a lot of legal weight behind them. However, some parents still decide to ignore child support orders. Regardless of the reason or motivation, ignoring or failing to meet child support requirements is a serious problem, especially if it is putting you and your child into financial trouble. If this has happened to you, talk to our San Francisco child support lawyers about child support enforcement. We may be able to ask the court to use enforcement measures to compel your spouse to pay child support as they were originally ordered.

The court often compels someone to pay child support by:

  • Issuing a fine
  • Holding them in contempt of court (a criminal offense)
  • Approving wage garnishments
  • Withholding tax returns

Get Comprehensive Help Today for Your Child Support Case

Gill Law Group, PC is your one-stop law firm for all matters child support related in San Francisco. We are here to walk you through the entire process and represent you in and out of court, wherever we are needed. Whether you are the parent who wants to receive child support or the parent who will likely need to pay it, you can depend on our counsel.

Our child support attorneys can help you by:

  • Explaining the overall child support process
  • Clarifying child support terms
  • Determining fair child support arrangements
  • Attempting to negotiate a child support agreement
  • Protecting your rights as a parent throughout the case
  • Providing representation when going to court
  • Enforcing custody or visitation agreements
  • Organizing support payments

Discover all the ways our attorneys can help you make sense of child support. Call (415) 324-6969 now and get your complimentary case evaluation.

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