If you are currently paying child support for a child from a previous relationship and are unsure how you will be able to add additional support payments for another child, it is important that you understand your options. Do not hesitate to inform the judge that you are already making support payments during your proceedings, because they will likely take this factor into consideration when making their decision.
The family judge has the authority to consider whether one parent has "financial hardship" when ruling on a child support order. California's Family Code defines justifiable hardships as:
- Extraordinary health or medical expenses, or uninsured and catastrophic loss for which the parent is responsible
- The cost of the basic and minimum living expenses of the parent's other children for whom they are responsible to support or who reside with them
If you are experiencing severe financial difficulties because of justifiable expenses due to your circumstances, the court may allow for an income deduction in your case to help accommodate your circumstances. A knowledgeable attorney can assess your situation and help you understand whether your circumstances may qualify as financial hardship.
It is important to pro-actively provide the court with this information as well as supporting documents to prove the financial hardship. The attorneys at Claery & Hammond, LLP can assist you with your child support matter. Contact us today for your free consultation.