Most California residents who talk about child support probably are thinking of fathers paying support to former spouses or partners. As the decades have gone by, however, the roles of both mothers and fathers have become less rigid. Nowadays, many women are the breadwinners in their families, and many fathers have become stay-at-home parents tasked with caring for children.
Because of the shift, more and more women are facing a new reality -- paying child support to their ex-spouses. As with fathers ordered to pay support, factors such as the mother's income, the everyday expenses of raising a child and the cost of living are taken into consideration by a court when it calculates how much child support a mother will pay. The child-support formula varies from state to state, however, so it is important to check on state laws before discussing child support.
Child-support cases can be settled by litigation or by an alternative method of the parents' choosing. For those parents who simply cannot talk with each other about family law issues like child support without either one going ballistic, litigation is the obvious course, with the outcome of the case decided by a judge.
If parents have a better relationship and want a cheaper and less adversarial way to discuss child support, collaborative law and mediation are possibilities. To use alternative options, however, parents must set aside their emotions and focus on the issues at hand and listen carefully to each other's suggestions without judgment. This may help them find alternative ways to settle their child-support issue.
For parents who are dealing with late payments and other child-support concerns, they always have the option of asking for child support modification. Existing support orders can be changed under certain circumstances such as long-term or unexpected unemployment or sudden illness.
Source: Communities Digital News, "More woman paying child support, spousal support," Myra Fleischer, May 27, 2014