Family Law | Estate Planning | Divorce & Mediation in Walnut Creek

Family Law: Spousal Support & Child Support

Child Support

Child support (also known as child maintenance) is an ongoing, periodic payment made by a parent for the financial benefit of a child following the end of a marriage or other relationship. Child maintenance is paid directly or indirectly by an obligor to an obligee for the care and support of children of a relationship that has been terminated, or in some cases never existed. Often the obligor is a non-custodial parent. The obligee is typically a custodial parent, a caregiver, a guardian, or the state.

Typically one has the same duty to pay child support irrespective of sex, so a mother is required to pay support to a father just as a father must pay a mother. Where there is joint custody, the child is considered to have two custodial parents and no non-custodial parents, and a custodial parent with a higher income may be required to pay the other custodial parent. At Langley Law Firm, we know that the most important factor in any child support case is that the children are ultimately taken care of financially, so that they can live happy, safe and fruitful lives. 

Once a child support order or agreement is in place, the payment amount may be increased or decreased under certain circumstances. If a parent's earning ability or a child's financial needs have changed - that could conceivably be enough to trigger a modification. In today’s ever-changing world, child support modifications are often requested by both parties, and by always stressing fairness, transparency and accountability, Langley Law Firm has successfully achieved favorable results for its clients.

Spousal Support

When a married couple gets a divorce, the court may award alimony or spousal support to one of the former spouses, based either on an agreement between the couple or a decision by the court itself. The purpose of alimony is to limit any unfair economic effects of a divorce by providing a continuing income to a non-wage-earning or lower-wage-earning spouse. Part of the justification is that one spouse may have chosen to forego a career to support the family and needs time to develop job skills to support his or herself. Another purpose may be to help a spouse continue the standard of living they had during marriage.

Unlike child support, which in most states is mandated according to very specific monetary guidelines, courts have broad discretion in determining whether to award alimony and, if so, how much and for how long. At Langley Law Firm, we know that alimony is an integral part of almost every divorce, and that is why we bring great value to this process for all of our clients in each and every case.

For more information about spousal support or child support in Walnut Creek, please use our Contact Us form.

Langley Law | Family Law | Walnut Creek | Spousal Support | Alimony | Child Support | Child Maintenance