Child Support in Sacramento
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Frequently asked questions
What is child support supposed to cover?
Child support is a payment made by one parent to the other to help cover the costs of raising a child. This support aims to ensure that the child has access to the same standard of living as they would if their parents were still together. Our paralegal services in Sacramento aim develop a fair and reasonable child support plan to ensure that the child has access to the resources they need to thrive. This means that child support should cover a wide range of expenses, including:
Basic living – The cost of food, clothing, and shelter for the child. This includes property rent, utilities, and groceries.
Medical – The child’s medical care, including regular check-ups, vaccinations, and any necessary treatments. This can also include the cost of health insurance for the child.
Education – Includes things like tuition, books, and other school supplies. This can also comprise the cost of extracurricular activities and tutoring, if necessary.
Child care – If the child is too young to attend school, it can be used to pay for child care services. This can include the cost of daycare, after-school programs, and other forms of child care.
Special needs – If the child has any special needs, such as a disability, it should be used to pay for any necessary accommodations or treatments. This can include the cost of specialized care, therapy, or equipment.
How is the amount of child support calculated?
The amount of child support paid is typically determined by state law and is based on various factors, including the income of both parents, the number of children, and the amount of time each parent spends with the child. This formula is designed to ensure that the child receives a fair and reasonable amount of support based on the parents’ ability to provide.
How is child support collected?
Child support is typically collected through a government organization, such as a local child support agency. The agency will work with both parents to establish a child support plan, which outlines the amount of support owed and how it will be paid. Once the child support plan has been established, the agency will typically collect the payments from the non-custodial parent and disburse them to the custodial parent.
Child support payments are often automatically deducted from the paycheck of the non-custodial parent and sent directly to the local child support agency. This is often the most convenient and efficient collection method, as it ensures that the payments are made on time and in full.
Can the amount of child support be modified?
Yes, the amount of child support can be modified if there is a significant change in the financial circumstances of either parent. One common reason for adjusting the amount of child support is a change in the income of either parent. For example, if the parent receiving child support experiences a decrease in income, they may be able to request a modification of the child support order to reflect their new financial situation. Similarly, if the parent paying child support experiences an increase in income, the other parent may be able to request an increase in the amount of child support.
What if the other parent refuses to pay child support?
If the parent ordered to pay child support fails to make the required payments, the parent receiving support has several options for enforcing the child support order. These options include contacting the other parent and trying to come to an agreement, contacting the local child support agency, and filing a motion with the court to enforce the order.
When does child support legally end?
Similar to a guardianship, support ends when the child reaches the age of majority, which is typically 18 years old. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. The child may still be eligible for support even after reaching the majority age if they cannot support themselves due to a disability. In these cases, the court may order the parents to continue paying child support.