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California parents and child support

While many families are considered "traditional" in California, there are many families that have a different composition than two parents and their children living happily together. In fact, approximately 25 percent of children are born to parents who are not married and a significant number of marriages end in divorce. In these cases, child support must be determined.

Because of the relatively large number of children requiring support, the government has a stake in enforcing payments. As a result, agencies may aggressively enforce an agreement. While payments can be deducted directly from a person's paycheck, the government can also seize personal property and deduct the payments from tax refunds.

There are several factors that are considered when determining an appropriate amount of support as established by state guidelines. To make a determination, the family court will review the noncustodial parent's income and how many children are involved in addition to considering the needs of the children and the custodial parent's income. Support can either be increased or decreased due to a change of circumstances.

Some would argue that children have a legal right to child support to ensure that needs are met. Even if the custodial parent has a decent salary, the law indicates that children are entitled to benefit from the income of both parents. Unfortunately, parents in California often disagree on what an appropriate amount of support is. As such, they often want an attorney with experience and knowledge of state guidelines involving family law issues on their side.

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