Sacramento Child Support Lawyer

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Sacramento Child Support Attorney

In the event of divorce, and even in relational separations, child support tends to be one of the most common issues contested in court. Children can come with a large financial responsibility, and it is common for the involved parties to seek fairness in their proceedings. If you or someone you know is seeking child support solutions, a Sacramento child support lawyer can help.

Sacramento Child Support Lawyer

Why Choose Us?

At the Law Offices of Dianne M Fetzer, we understand how much child support payments can affect your life. Child support laws can be overwhelming and complex. With many years of handling family law cases, we can handle your case, no matter how complex the circumstances may be.

We know that every family is unique. We can offer you the attention and legal counsel you need for your unique situation. We will listen to your concerns, make sure your rights and your children’s rights are protected, and develop a plan that aligns with your goals.

We have a history of successful outcomes in these types of cases. We can negotiate a child support agreement on your behalf and achieve favorable results. We can provide the legal counsel you need while making the law clear and understandable for you, providing you with the peace of mind you need.

How to Establish Child Support in California

Generally speaking, parents desire to support their children emotionally and financially, even if the parents are not married. In some cases, however, there may be one parent who does not desire to do so, whether an agreement was established officially or not. Two parents can agree on a financial plan themselves. However, if they want the courts to enforce this agreement, it must be court-ordered. A simple oral agreement between both parties is not sufficient.

In order to establish a court-ordered agreement for an amount that you and your child’s other parent already agreed upon, the agreement must be memorialized in writing and approved by a judge. The judge will issue the order if it is determined that the agreement is in the child’s interest. If you and your child’s other parent cannot agree, you can have the court establish the agreement by filing an action with the county superior court.

How to Enforce a Child Support Order

When child support has been established, there are multiple ways the order can be enforced. One of the primary ways is to file a motion for contempt, where the delinquent parent will be held in contempt of court. When this happens, the delinquent parent may be ordered to pay fines, serve jail time, or other penalties until the past due amount of child support is paid.

The motion for contempt can be filed by the primary parent. However, it can also be filed by the county or local DCSS office. However, it is important to note that California has a three-year statute of limitations. This date begins on the last day the payment is due. If filed after this timeframe, it is likely that past-due support will not be collected. Penalties for being in contempt of court for child support include:

  • Fines
  • Jail time
  • Community service
  • Paying attorney fees
  • Lien on property
  • Garnishment of wages
  • Garnishment from bank accounts
  • Garnishment from other forms of income.

Generally speaking, a parent will not be penalized for genuinely being unable to pay, such as in the event of being laid off from their job in Sacramento. However, this will need to be proven in court with evidence to verify their financial situation. It is also worth noting that child support payments continue until the balance is paid in full, even if this does not occur until after the child turns 18.

How Child Support Is Calculated in California

California uses a complex formula to calculate the amount of child support a parent is responsible for. In simple terms, the amount is calculated based on both parents’ incomes, the percentage of time the children will spend with each parent, and certain expenses related to the child(ren). All of this information will need to be presented to the court in order to make child support decisions.

Gathering income information can be straightforward, including tax returns, W-2s, and any other proof of income you can provide. However, a parenting plan, or child custody agreement, must be in place prior to determining child support in order to provide information on the percentage of time the child will spend with each parent.


Q: How Much Is Child Support for One Kid in California?

A: The amount of child support for one child in California depends on a number of factors, including the income of both parents and the amount of time the child will spend with each parent. The court will also factor in certain costs associated with raising the child. Each case is unique and the final amount will be determined by the court.

Q: Can You Fight Child Support in California?

A: You can contest child support in California if you believe the amount is incorrect or unfair. You can also contest the motion if significant changes occurred since the amount was determined, such as losing your job or a change in your custody agreement. You can contest this amount by requesting an order and filing a motion with the court.

Q: What if I Can’t Afford to Pay Child Support in California?

A: If something happens where you genuinely cannot pay child support in California, you will generally not be severely penalized. However, you must prove that you are unable to pay child support with evidence showing the state of your financial situation. This could include evidence of losing your job or receiving a pay cut.

Q: How Far Back Can Child Support Be Claimed in California?

A: In California, the statute of limitations for claiming child support is three years. This means that if a parent is seeking retroactive child support, they must file a petition within three years of the date the payment was due. Filing to recover retroactive child support should be done as soon as possible to ensure that it is done within this timeframe.

Contact The Law Offices of Dianne M Fetzer Today

If you are seeking child support solutions, the Law Offices of Dianne M. Fetzer in Sacramento can help. Contact us to speak with us today.

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