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Joseph R. Zoucha, Attorney & Counselor at Law

Redwood City, California Family Law Blog

How is child support determined in California?

If you and your spouse are divorcing and you have minor children, the children will likely split their time between you and your spouse's house once the divorce is finalized. In many cases, the child will stay primarily with one parent to keep their schedules consistent, particularly during the school year. The other parent will typically be granted parenting time and be required to pay child support to provide for the child's necessities. Child custody and support issues can be a major hurdle for many divorcing couples, so it is helpful to know how child support is handled in California.

Courts in California will consider a number of factors when determining how much child support the non-custodial parent needs to pay. Generally, the court will focus on how much money is required to maintain the child's standard of living post-divorce. The court will consider the child's health needs, education, basic necessities after-school activities and general welfare. Not all children are the same, so the courts will make decisions regarding child support on a case-by-case basis.

The new year often means more divorces

Now that the holidays are over, many couples make the difficult decision to end their marriages. According to the experts, the number of divorces can increase anywhere from 25 percent to 30 percent from January through March. In fact, more people get divorced during these three months than during any other time of the year. The lowest number of divorces occurs during the summer months and during the holidays.

The reason for this typically relates to the holiday season. Many people want to stay together for one last holiday as a family, particularly if they have children. On the other hand, the stress of the holiday season is all some couples need to make the final decision to call it quits. Another reason couples wait to divorce until the New Year is that they want to start the new year with a clean slate. With the holidays behind them, people may feel ready to change their lives and move forward alone in the new year.

Getting help with your child custody issues

As we welcome 2018, many California couples are making the difficult decision to end their marriages. If a couple has children, this decision can be particularly difficult, considering that their child's life will never be the same. However, these life changes do not have to be completely negative. With support from our attorneys, you can make sure that the transition into post-divorce life is easy for both you and your children.

If you and your spouse are getting a divorce, you have a few options when it comes to child custody and support arrangements. The most challenging part is compromising with your spouse with regards to where the child will live post-divorce, how much time each parent will get with the child and who will make decisions regarding the child's schooling, health and other important issues. The attorneys at Joseph R Zoucha Attorney & Counselor at Law can negotiate with your spouse and their attorney to attempt to reach an understanding that works for both of you.

The end of a marriage doesn't have to be the end of a business

If you are the owner of a small business, you may have invested a great deal of time and effort into cultivating a successful enterprise. You probably consider your business to be of the utmost importance and wish to shield it from harm, but certain changes in life can be difficult to prepare for, some of which may pose a threat to the longevity of your company.

If you and your spouse decide to part ways, you may have concerns about how a divorce will affect your business. While the division of assets will inherently have an impact on your financial standings, it doesn't necessarily spell doom for your company.

New tax plan may affect alimony payments nationwide

Alimony payments are often a useful way to help stay-at-home wives and husbands in California get back on their feet after a divorce. Alimony allows them to take time to acquire the skills they need to get a job to pay the bills now that they are single. The newly enacted tax law may have a major impact on men and women who are receiving alimony payments. According to one of the provisions, there will be no more tax deduction for alimony payments for people getting divorced after December 31, 2018. This means that the spouse who is paying alimony will not be able to deduct it on their taxes and the spouse receiving it will no longer be taxed.

Maintain financial stability during and after your divorce

If you are considering the idea of getting a divorce, you need to make sure you are prepared for what may lie ahead. The divorce process can be easy or difficult, depending on a number of factors, including the number of marital assets you have, the value of these assets, whether you have minor children and whether you are working outside of the home. Experts say that protecting yourself financially can alleviate a lot of stress during and after your divorce.

In order to make sure that both you and your spouse are protected, experts recommend discussing your financial situation with a financial planner, attorney or other qualified professional as soon as possible. In many marriages, one spouse is often responsible for the finances, while the other is left in the dark. If you are getting divorced, it is important that both you and your spouse are up to speed. Review your financial information, collect all relevant documents and provide the professionals with a full and accurate picture of your financial status.

Courts encourage shared custody after divorce

In the past, when a couple went through a divorce, many fathers lost a significant amount of time with their children. In many cases, the mother would look after the child on a day-to-day basis, while the father would only spend time with them every other weekend. In 2017, this is no longer the case. Many parents have decided to equally share in the responsibility of raising their children by co-parenting. This shift in child custody and support may mean big changes for families in the coming years.

This past year, over 20 states considered bills to make co-parenting a legal presumption, or encourage shared custody in some way or another. This stems from the efforts of fathers' rights advocates who have said for years that fathers feel overwhelmed by child support and completely alienated from their kids. Co-parenting also stems from the idea of gender equality or the idea that both parents have the right to play an active role in their child's upbringing. Some states are also encouraging mediation, in which parents come up with a plan that clearly states each parent's responsibilities when it comes to raising their child.

How can I end my marriage or domestic partnership in California?

As much as we would like our relationships to last forever, sometimes that just is not possible. People who are in unhealthy marriages or domestic partnerships may decide that getting a divorce is the best option for themselves and their families. If you decide to end your marriage or partnership, there a few options available.

Once you have decided to go through with the divorce, you can start planning your case with a divorce lawyer to save you time and money in the long run. This is particularly true if you have high-value assets or property, or if you have minor children. In "no fault" states, like California, you do not have to prove that your spouse or partner did something wrong to end the marriage. The only thing you need to say is that you had "irreconcilable differences" and could no longer get along. It is important to note that once one spouse or partner has decided to end the marriage, the other has no power to stop the marriage from ending. If your spouse or partner refuses to go along with the divorce process, the court will grant a default judgment and the divorce will be finalized even without their consent.

As a dad, what should you know about fathers' rights?

California fathers want to have an active role in the lives of their children, yet sometimes, this is difficult for unmarried or divorcing fathers. If you are struggling to establish your rightful parenting time or want to protect your rights as a father, you would be wise to obtain the appropriate guidance as you seek to do so.

As a biological parent, you have the right to seek custody and visitation time with your kids. It might not be an easy process, but you may fight for time and access to your kids. Children do better when they are able to have a strong relationship with both parents, and it can be worthwhile to pursue the legal options available in order to protect the interests of your kids.

Tyrese Gibson regains custody over daughter after court battle

In an ideal world, divorcing or separating parents would agree on everything regarding their child's future, from where the child will stay to the visitation schedule. However, in the real world, many parents have a difficult time dealing with child custody and support issues. It can feel impossible to compromise with their ex-spouses when it comes to their children. When allegations of abuse come into play, a parent can temporarily or permanently lose custody of a child.

Tyrese Gibson, the "Fast & Furious" actor and singer, recently regained custody over his 10-year-old daughter after a hard-fought battle with his ex-wife, Norma Mitchell. Mitchell filed a restraining order against Gibson in September, accusing him of being unstable, as well as emotionally and physically abusing his daughter. Gibson denied the claims, stating that he never abused his daughter. His lawyer commented that Gibson disciplined his daughter with a spanking, in accordance with the law, when she visited her father one summer.