Divorce is never simple or clean, no matter how amicable things may appear to be, or how much you’re both in agreement about the need for change. In fact, it’s extremely rare that things go that well, but supposing that they do, it’s still going to be messy. There will be all kinds of legal and financial details to be sorted out, and of course the big one is if there are any children from the marriage, what is going to happen about them.

Parents are sometimes able to work out mutually acceptable child custody arrangements between themselves, and that’s always a good thing. But it’s also rare. Many people actually try to use custody as a way of inflicting emotional pain on their former spouse, or try to use it as leverage either to save a dying marriage or to force the other party to agree to something they otherwise might not. And on the issue of child support, most people are totally unprepared for what they should expect.

According to high profile child support lawyers, Carlsbad based Fischer & Van Thiel, you should seek legal help with managing every aspect of a divorce or break up, from the moment that you first make a firm decision that you’re not going to stay together. Every move you make from that point on is going to have a big influence on the eventual outcome, even if it may be difficult to see that in the beginning.

Child support payments in California are supposed to be fair. There are some complications with the law that mean that they’re not always what most people would consider fair, and sometimes they’re really going to look totally unfair. Without a legal expert on your side, correcting any unfairness will be practically impossible, and even with a lawyer it can still be a lengthy and complex process. Every case is different, but good lawyers can usually obtain solutions that work for the best interest of their clients.

In California, the payments are based on a calculation which takes into account the income of both parents, looking at which parent has custody, which earns more, how much of the time the non-custodial parent takes care of the child, and other factors like that. This provides a ballpark figure that the judge can use as a basis for determining how much child support should be paid, but it’s not beyond revision either up or down. The judge still has some say in what the final amount will be.

Anyone with concerns that the amount of child support that they pay or receive is unfair, that they shouldn’t be required to pay it at all, or that the money they do pay isn’t being used appropriately, should get advice from an attorney. You may well have some chance of setting things straight. Even if a situation seems impossible, the right legal approach to it can sometimes yield a positive result.