Child Support
San Diego Child Support Lawyers

San Diego Child Support Lawyer

San Diego Child Support LawyerChild support is money to cover a child’s living and medical expenses.

Children have a right to have the financial support of both of their parents, whether their parents are separated, divorced, or were never married. Attorney Sarah T. Schaffer, CFLS and her talented team at Schaffer Family Law Group, APC are here to help our clients establish, enforce and when necessary, modify child support payments.

Child Support and Child Visitation Attorney in San Diego, CA

Are you looking for a San Diego child support and visitation lawyer in San Diego? California law requires both parents to support their child or children. The amount of child support a parent pays is based upon a complex mathematical formula or guidelines that considers the monthly incomes of both parents and the amount of time the child resides with each. The courts use a computer program to calculate child support. Some of the factors the courts consider are:

  • Father’s gross monthly income
  • Mother’s gross monthly income
  • Interest and dividend income
  • Self-employment income
  • Other incomes (including undeclared gifts or cash)
  • Number of children
  • Location of the children if one parent is the primary caretaker
  • Amount of time the parent with visitation rights spends with the children

If one parent is not working, but can work to earn money, the court may assign income to that parent based upon their ability to earn. This is done in the interest of “fairness.” In some situations where one parent is not working or is working at less than their potential, the parent who is working at their capacity-to-earn may claim that the under-performing parent has the ability to earn more or is “under-earning.” The person making such a claim has the burden of proof and must show the court what the other parent could be earning. The use of vocational evaluation experts can be helpful in this area.

In child support cases where one parent has periods of unemployment or fluctuating income, the court will average the income over a period of time. In cases where one parent may receive occasional overtime or a bonus, the court may order that parent to pay a percentage to the other parent when the overtime or bonus pay is received.

Income from a Parent’s New Spouse – Usually the income of a parent’s new spouse is not considered by the court, however, it may be included in the guideline calculation to account for tax rates.

Child support is payable until a child reaches the age of 19, reaches the age of 18 and is no longer a full-time high school student, marries, becomes an emancipated minor or dies. The parents may agree on how to share the costs of college for a child, but the court has no jurisdiction to order a parent to contribute to a child’s college education. However, if the parents make an agreement regarding the funding of college, a court can then enforce that agreement.

In addition to helping establish fair child support, we assist clients with child support enforcement, and modifications. With all family law matters, it is a good idea to consult with an attorney about the specific facts in your case. Our firm is ready to protect your rights and best interests. We welcome your call and, as always, we offer a no-cost, initial consultation to discuss your situation.

We Can Challenge the Court’s Child Support Calculations

The court will presume that the child support calculation determined by state guidelines or computer program is correct. However, a family law attorney experienced in child support can challenge those calculations and often persuade the court to deviate from a guideline support calculation.

We will help you understand your rights, obligations and legal options concerning financial support of your children. Then we will pursue the best possible outcome to your legal problem.

Modifying Child Support Orders Based upon Your Changing Circumstances

For a modification to be approved and granted, it must be demonstrated that there have been significant changes in material condition and that the proposed modification is in the child’s best interests. Therefore, if you experience a substantial change in your personal life circumstances, such as the loss of a job, major health issues, changes in custody, a remarriage, or the birth or adoption of another child, your court-ordered child support payments should change as well. Sarah T. Schaffer, CFLS can assist you in petitioning the court for a modification in child support.

Call Schaffer Family Law Group, APC at (858) 509-7907 to schedule a strategy session today.

“Without Sarah Schaffer and her amazing team, my son and I would not be where we are today. Sarah has always treated us with the utmost professionalism and respect as clients. Her concern and pursuit of our safety, well being and future success has helped me to feel confident about the outcomes and has given me more freedom to be able to focus on my tasks at hand, my job and most importantly, being a mother. I cannot thank the Schaffer Team enough for everything they have done. We are so blessed to have Sarah in our corner!”

Christina Burdick ReviewChristina Burdick

Call Schaffer Family Law Group at (858) 509-7907 to schedule a strategy session today.


Sarah T. Schaffer In The News

Recent Media Events

Sarah T. Schaffer Recognized in San Diego Discovery Magazine With over 220,000 attorneys in California, Schaffer is one of the few, numbering 178 within San Diego, to hold the distinction of Certified Family Law Specialist.

San Diego Magazine Women of the Year Awards Colonel Sarah T. Schaffer, USMC – Camp Pendleton recognized for her Military Service as JAG Officer.

Top 50 Influential Leaders in San Diego Sarah T. Schaffer is active in the San Diego County and North County bar associations and supports the programs of Kids’ Turn San Diego, a nonprofit that helps children through family separations, and Casa Cornelia Law Center, which provides pro bono legal services to victims of human and civil rights violations.

Dividing a Business - San Diego Discover Magazine Not all businesses have marital value, especially smaller businesses whose primary value is from the efforts of one spouse.

Sarah Schaffer on the cover of Discover Magazine

Family law matters are never simple By your side every step of the way

Certified Family Law Specialist CFLS Sarah Schaffer, Wayne Rice and Leslie Ryland have been certified by the State Bar of California as “Certified Family Law Specialists,” a distinction earned by family law attorneys who have “gone beyond the standard licensing requirements.” Every attorney at Schaffer Family Law Group has either earned their CFLS Certification, or is actively working towards that professional goal as a requirement of the firm and our commitment to providing our clients the most skilled and proficient attorneys in San Diego County.

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Professionals, Business Owners & Divorce Solving problems with the division of marital assets. The need for privacy and not leaving written records of your 'dirty laundry' for the world to see in the permanent public record and more...

Military Divorce Sarah serves as a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserve. Military families find Sarah’s understanding of the military and issues servicemembers face enable her to provide superior counsel.

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