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What Income Determines Child Support

What Income Determines Child Support

The decision to divorce can be very difficult. The end of the marital relationship can equate to a complete life change. Divorce and other family law problems are without a doubt, a complicated and often difficult matter – from spousal support disputes to marital assets – to the details of child custody and child support. There is nothing more important to a caring parent than his or her children. However, child support is one of the most stressful issues a divorcing couple has to deal with. It is probably the most often litigated issue in a divorce case. So, how is child support arrived at? What is considered income for child support in California? California Family Code Section 4058(a) states, “The annual gross income of each parent means income from whatever source derived, except as specified in subdivision (c) and includes, but is not limited to, the following: Income such as commissions, salaries, royalties, wages, bonuses, rents, dividends, pensions, interest, trust income, annuities, workers’ compensation benefits, unemployment insurance benefits, disability insurance benefits, social security benefits, and spousal support actually received from a person not a party to the proceeding to establish a child support order under this article. Income from the proprietorship of a business, such as gross receipts from the business reduced by expenditures required for the operation of the business”. The end of a marriage is the end of a legal relationship between two people. We, at the Riverside family law offices of Heath L. Baker, understand that every situation is unique. We know what you’re going through, and we’ll make sure you’re fully protected, get the...
Divorce & Health Insurance

Divorce & Health Insurance

There are many things to consider during divorce, and health insurance is one of them. Having adequate coverage is important, especially if you have children. Divorce changes everything. But what doesn’t change is the fact that you and your spouse will continue to have concerns about not only your overall health, but also that of your children. It is no surprise that divorce causes major issues with health insurance. Did you know that many couples stay together just because of health insurance benefits? What do you do if divorce threatens to take away your health insurance? What if your spouse wants to drop you from his coverage? Are you facing such a situation? This can be even more stressful if that spouse is battling an illness or chronic condition and is uninsurable. More often than not, the spouse will be a homemaker with no access to an employer plan or if they work part time, they usually don’t qualify for any benefits. Many workers have employer health insurance plans that cover their whole family. Once the divorce is finalized, the ex-spouse is not even legally allowed to be on a group plan as they are not related anymore. However, since divorce is bad enough news; how about some good news? Your spouse cannot take you off the health insurance plan until the terms of your divorce are finalized – and even then, you might be able to convince the judge to let you stay on your spouse’s health insurance – especially if you have some sort of pre-existing condition. If you have a pre-existing condition, are on COBRA, or...
Grandparents Visitation Rights

Grandparents Visitation Rights

To many grandparents, grandchildren are their pride and joy. It is understandable that grandparents want to spend time with their grandchildren and enjoy watching them grow up. When grandparents are denied the right to see their grandchildren, it can be heartbreaking. In some divorces, grandparents’ visitation rights can be a volatile issue. Grandparents can play a key role in a child’s upbringing, including take care of the child when the parents are working, giving advice and providing emotional and financial support. There was a time when grandparents were allowed to visit their grandchildren if the court considered that it was in the best interests of the child, even if a spouse disagreed. Today, if grandparents are denied visitation rights, they must not only prove that the visits are in the best interests of the child, but that the child is also in danger of being harmed. It can be extremely upsetting to the grandparents as well as the child when parents prohibit visitation. If this happens, the grandparents can file a petition with the court requesting visitation rights. Courts try to serve those interests with an agreement that preserves existing relationships. If a judge sees that there is a strong relationship between grandparents and grandchildren, he or she will often try to put an order in place that preserves it. Courts consider many factors when awarding visitation, including: The child’s age, gender, and mental and physical health The age and mental health of the grandparents The child’s existing relationship and emotional ties with the grandparents To what degree the grandparents support the child’s relationship with his or her parents...

How Is Spousal Support Determined?

When a couple divorces, the court may order one spouse to pay the other a certain amount of support money each month. Immediately after separation, a spouse can ask for support. This is referred to as temporary spousal support. It is utilized to maintain the living conditions and standards of the parties in as close to the status quo position as possible pending trial and the division of their assets and obligations. The court may use guidelines when fashioning an award of temporary spousal support. It can also be ordered once the divorce becomes final, as part of the final divorce judgment. The purpose of permanent spousal support is not to preserve the pre-separation status quo, but to provide financial assistance as determined by the financial circumstances of the parties after the divorce and division of their community property Unlike child support, awarding permanent spousal support requires review of many different factors. At this time, the judge considers the factors specified in California Family Code Section 4320. These include, but are not limited to: The length of the marriage Each person’s individual needs, based on the standard of living they had during the marriage What each person can afford to pay Earning capacity The age and health of each party Whether having a job would make it difficult to care for the minor children History of domestic violence How long should long-term spousal support last? In marriages of ten years or longer, the court often maintains jurisdiction to modify support indefinitely. Support ends on death or remarriage. According to Family Code Section 4336, shorter term marriages often have orders...