Los Angeles Child Support Lawyers | The Law Offices of Nigel Burns

Child Support Attorneys in Los Angeles

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Child Support in California

There are three main issues in the area of child support: determination, modification, and collection. Our experienced attorneys have obtained favorable outcomes for our clients in all three.

Initial Determination of Child Support First, there is the initial determination of the amount of child support, which can be done as a part of the dissolution of marriage or as a separate proceeding. In California, determination of child support falls under the California Family Code, which provides guidelines but allows for the court to deviate from those guidelines under certain circumstances. Ultimately, the responsibility to support the children lies with both parents, and the court attempts to determine an arrangement where both parents can provide a consistent standard of living for the children. In theory, this seems simple enough. In practice, child support determinations are much more complicated and oftentimes highly contested.

At the Law Offices of Nigel Burns, our attorneys are well versed in the family code and are experienced in handling litigated and negotiated child support determinations. We will work with you and keep you informed throughout the process and will fight adamantly for your rights and your children’s best interests.

Child Support Modification Second, there are child support modifications. People’s circumstances in life are constantly changing. There is no time when that is truer than during the years following a divorce proceeding. Further, people often underestimate the need to hire an experienced legal professional in the early stages of their divorce and end up with a child support order that is completely unfair. Either they are paying too much money or not receiving enough, and the order from the court simply does not accurately reflect the mutual responsibility of both parents to provide for the children or provide for a consistent standard of living for the children.

The good news is that it is not too late. Just because the initial child support order was not fair, or no longer accurately represents both parents’ current circumstances, does not mean that you are stuck with that order forever. Our Los Angeles child support attorneys are experienced in securing child support modifications and have consistently obtained favorable results for our clients in the past.

Child Support Collection Finally, just because the amount of child support has been determined, does not mean that the battle is over. If your spouse has failed to pay their child support, or if you are falsely accused of owing child support money, you need an experienced attorney in your corner fighting for your rights. To resolve issues of child support, the legal system acts quickly to ensure parents or legal guardians have what they need to protect and financially support their children. Ultimately, a child support order is of no use to you or your children if your former partner does not abide by it.

At the Law Offices of Nigel Burns, we have consistently obtained favorable results for our clients in the past, both those who were owed money and those who were falsely accused. For additional information, you can refer to articles provided by our trusted family law attorneys in Los Angeles.

Child Support Collection: Wage Garnishment & Property Seizure

Payments are based on a certain criterion and take government aid into account for those that are expected to pay child support. It can also be based on stock, income levels per parent, social security, and pensions. Ideally, financial support is expected to cover essential costs like food, shelter, school-related costs. Whether a former spouse agrees with the restraining order, he or she is expected to comply with the terms. If not, choosing to avoid payments will result in severe consequences.

According to statistics, fathers are the ones paying child support 85% of the time, and it’s common for mothers to miss out on at least one payment during the course of the child’s support period. As the recipient of child support, if you find that payments are dwindling down or not being provided at all there are three additional options:

-       Going back to court for a judge order

-       Pursue automatic wage withholding

-       Request federal and state intervention

Wage withholding, also known as wage garnishment, is when child support payment is removed from the non-custodial parent’s paycheck. It is court-ordered, meaning it cannot be evaded. In other cases, if the other parent does not have enough income, but happens to have assets, it can be seized. Property division can be considered for items that are considered valuable, such as cars, houses, and stock.

Property Liens for Unpaid Child Support

Property liens or property seizures are an additional method to seek child support if the expecting parent is not getting paid. It is best to advise a legal professional to understand the specifics involved in liens for unpaid child support. A file must be submitted to the county recorder’s office where the property is registered. Once placed, the custodial parent can sell the property or wait until it is refinanced and listed to acquire what is owed. If the property is not sold, a lien can remain until one of two conditions is met. The first circumstance is if the custodial parent agrees to remove the lien from the property. The second circumstance is when the child is no longer entitled to support, and you have paid all the amount outstanding.

Child Support Payment FAQ

Whether you are requesting child support, or are a non-custodial parent, we understand you may have immediate questions about the process. Though it is a common occurrence, these cases can be complex and complicated if you are going about it alone. Different states have different rules as to how long payments should be made and how the agreement will be enforced. We answer seven frequently asked questions in this article. If you need additional guidance or would like to schedule a consultation, give one of our trusted lawyers a call.

Rights of a Father When He is Not Married

Co-parenting is a common approach for parents that are unwed. In the United States, the law declares a baby raised by a married couple is legally presumed to be the child of the husband in the family. When a baby is born outside of marriage, paternity is separated from legal presumptions. The failure to establish paternity leaves an unwed father without legal standing on the child's welfare. Laws that determine child custody vary across states, but courts tend to award custody based on what is best for the child. In most cases, courts rule in the mother's favor unless she is declared unfit to provide adequate care. If the father decides he does not want to be a part of the child’s life, a petition can be filed to have the paternity rights removed and terminate the pre-existing relationship. For more information, you can refer to this article.


Modifying Child Support Due to Financial Hardships
Risks of Failing to Pay Court-Ordered Child Support or Spousal Support
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