FAQ: The other party is not assisting me, how do I open a child support case in OC California?
I want to know, "How Do I Open a Child Support Case in OC California?"
In California, every parent has a legal obligation to provide financial support for his or her children. If your child’s other parent is not providing financial support for your shared child, you may initiate a child support case. In doing so, you can have a child support order created, and if necessary, you can have it legally enforced. This means that if your child’s other parent fails to pay the necessary amount to support a shared child, he or she will face legal consequences and could have his or her wages garnished in order to make payments.
So, how do you go about initiating a child support case in California? The process is not difficult, but in order to successfully create a child support order, you will need to collect financial information about yourself and your child’s other parent. Child support cases are best approached with the assistance of an attorney in California. Read below to determine where you are at and what your next steps should be.
Do You Have an Open Family Law Case?
If you and the child’s other parent are married or in a registered domestic partnership in the State of California, any of the following types of family law cases will allow you to ask for child support.
• A divorce, or dissolution of marriage,
• A legal separation,
• An annulment,
• A case for a domestic violence restraining order,
• A petition for child custody or support of minor children,
• A case through your local child support agency.
If you already have one of these cases ongoing, you may ask for a child support order as a part of the case.
During a divorce, a legal separation, or an annulment, you can ask for a temporary child support order to ensure that your child is financially secure throughout the legal process. You can also ask for a long-term child support order to be issued with the final judgment of your divorce, legal separation, or annulment.
If you are in the midst of a domestic violence restraining order case, as a victim of domestic violence, you can ask for child support as a part of the domestic violence restraining order against your child’s other parent. If you are awarded a long term restraining order, you can also ask for child support as a part of the long term solution.
A Petition for Custody and Support of Minor Children is a way of asking the court for a child custody and/or child support order without asking for a legal separation, divorce, or annulment.
Local child support agencies exist in California to assist all children and families with children in California when it comes to child support. It is in the best interest of the State of California for all children to be financially supported by their parents, because this means that they do not rely on the State for financial assistance. Any parent can request that their local child support agency initiate a child support case on the behalf of the child any time you that the other parent is not assisting in supporting the child financially.
If you and the child’s other parent are not married or in a registered domestic partnership in the State of California, the types of cases under which you can file a child support request are slightly different. For example, parents who are not married or in a registered domestic partnership will not be in the middle of a divorce or legal separation.
• A parentage or paternity case,
• A domestic violence restraining order case,
• A petition for custody and support of minor children,
• A case through your local child support agency.
If you are in the midst of one of these cases, it is a simple process to ask for a court order regarding child support.
In a parentage case, the idea is to determine who a child’s legal parents are - and who is legally responsible for paying child support. In this case, you will need to request that the judge makes a court order for child support.
In order to file a domestic violence restraining order against another person in California, you and that person need to have had a close relationship - such as having children together. During a domestic violence restraining order case, you may request child support orders the same way whether you and the child’s parents are married, in a registered domestic partnership, or not.
In a case to Petition for Custody and Support of Minor Children, you and the child’s other parent must have signed a Voluntary Declaration of Paternity. This establishes the child’s legal parents, and allows the court to issue a valid and legally enforceable child support order.
Remember that your local child support agency is there to ensure that your child and all children in California are financially supported by their parents.
I Have an Open Family Law Case in Orange County, Now What?
If you have one of the above family law cases open and you wish to request a child support hearing, you may do so on your own, or you may ask that your local child support agency request one for you.
Requesting a Child Support Hearing on Your Own
To request one on your own, you will need the following court forms.
• A Request for Order
• An Income and Expense Declaration or a Financial Statement (Your attorney or your local child support agency can help you determine which one you need.
It is advised that you ask an attorney to help you fill out your forms, or that you have an attorney review them when you have finished. You will need to make two copies of your forms: one for you and one for your child’s other parent. The court will file the original.
When you serve the papers on the other parent, you will need to file a proof of service with the court. You will then get a hearing date. Attend the hearing, where the judge will make a decision and create a child support order.
Requesting a Child Support Hearing with the Help of Your Local Child Support Agency
Your local child support agency may initiate a child support case automatically in some situations, including the following.
• If either parent receives public assistance, your local child support agency will file a child support case that requests that the noncustodial parent pay child support automatically;
• When a child is in foster care, the child support agency will likely initiate a child support case and request that one or both parents pay child support.
However, you may also request that your local child support agency assist you in a child support case.
• As a parent, you may ask that your local child support agency opens a case against your child’s other parent so that he or she is required to pay child support;
• If you have an ongoing family law case either parent can ask the local child support agency to enforce a child support order.
To ask for a child support order through your local child support agency, you will need to figure out where they are, and contact them. They will ask for some specific information about you, your family, and your child. This can include contact information, birth dates, social security numbers, financial information, and employment information. Whether you can supply this information or not, your local child support agency is also likely to search for some information on their own in addition to collecting information from you.
On your behalf, the child support agency will file a case with the court.
They will need to verify the paternity of both parents, because a person cannot be ordered to pay child support unless he or she is legally named as the child’s parent. Depending on whether the other parent has agreed to paternity, it may need to be verified prior to filing the child support case.
Some parents find it helpful to have their local child support agency take care of the child support case because it means that the child support agency will deal with paperwork, investigation into the other parent’s financial situation, and the court process. However, it may mean that your case takes slightly longer, and the outcome may not be as you had wished - remember that your local child support agency is filing on behalf of your child, and they do not represent you nor do their attorneys.
Orange County CA Child Support Attorneys
At Yanez & Associates, we offer free initial consultations so that we can get to know your case, and you can get to know us. Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation.
Table of Contents
- 1 I want to know, "How Do I Open a Child Support Case in OC California?"
- 2 Do You Have an Open Family Law Case?
- 3 I Have an Open Family Law Case in Orange County, Now What?
- 4 Requesting a Child Support Hearing with the Help of Your Local Child Support Agency
- 5 Orange County CA Child Support Attorneys