As a parent in a family that has broken apart, or in some cases may never have gotten together in the first place, you will probably eventually have to deal with issues about child support payments.
Child support debt is a serious problem in the state of California, especially in the present economy. More and more people are finding it difficult to meet their financial obligations, and unlike many other states, California charges interest on delinquent child support payments. The method by which this interest is calculated is not a very good method and makes the interest increase too quickly, until in some cases it balloons out of control.
What this means for Californians, both custodial and non-custodial parents, there are significant problems that can arise, with one of the most obvious being that the debt can become so large and so ridiculously out of control that it seems to the person responsible for paying it that it will be impossible to ever pay it all. You know what happens then? Many debtors simply give up. They just don’t pay what they should. This can happen anyway, but it’s far more likely to happen when there’s a punitive element to making payments.
For custodial parents this creates a huge problem. The child is not receiving the support payments from the non-custodial parent, and that means the custodial parent has to somehow make up the difference or perhaps see their child miss out on things because the custodial parent also may be struggling financially. And while the law makes it clear that there’s a big responsibility and no exceptions to the rules, it can be emotionally difficult for custodial parents to take a stand, especially if they can see the non-custodial parent in a position of hardship. Under those circumstances they may be willing to waive a payment here or there, or to forgive a non-payment.
For non-custodial parents this obviously creates a problem too, because debts sometimes get so overwhelming that the debtor may end up making repayments on the debt long after their child has already grown and left home.
Sometimes these matters come up because the amount of child support payment is incorrect in the first place. Or it can happen that somebody pays as much as they can afford, but it’s still not really enough. However this plays out, and whether you’re a custodial parent not receiving enough support, or a non-custodial parent who feels like they’re required to pay too much, according to Carlsbad child support lawyers Fischer & Van Thiel, you should seek legal advice to find out if there’s anything you can do to correct the situation.
A lawyer can help you if:
- The paternity of the child is uncertain or incorrectly attributed
- The amount you have been ordered to pay is impossible for you to sustain
- Your circumstances change temporarily or permanently
- You’re not receiving payments that you’re legally entitled to receive
- You feel that the custodial parent is not using money paid for child support appropriately
- You feel that your child is neglected or not receiving adequate care from the custodial parent
If any of the above concerns apply to your situation, the right thing to do is contact an attorney and discuss your child support problems before they become worse.