For parents today, it often takes two incomes to provide children with everything they need. Fortunately, child support was established to provide economic support for children when parents separate. Child support is basically a court-ordered, monetary payment made from the noncustodial parent to the custodial parent. In the majority of cases, mothers are the custodial parents, so fathers are usually paying child support. What follows may be helpful to fathers in California who are paying child support.
Fathers have an obligation to support their children, regardless of if they were married or not. However, any breakup between parents can be a challenging thing to deal with, and many times conflict is centered around money. Although it may be difficult to do, fathers who pay child support should try to keep their emotions out of it. The children have been through enough, never drag them into financial fights with an ex. It helps to remember that the payments are going to the children and serving their best interests.
Child support must always be paid on time, and this is non-negotiable. Fathers, if at all possible, should never allow themselves to fall behind on paying. The penalties for unpaid child support can be quite severe and can include loss of driver’s license, garnished checks and even jail time. If money is tight, pay as much as possible and make sure it’s on time. Fathers who are having trouble making payments can go to the court and ask to modify the existing order.
The best overall strategy for fathers in this situation is to protect interests, be organized and just do the right thing for the kids. Fathers in California who have questions about child support or experience a divorce that involves children should consider contacting an attorney. A seasoned legal representative can make sure that access to children is sufficient and also ensure that financial interests and personal rights are protected.