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Fathers are much more than a child support check

Historically, when a two-parent family became a one-parent household, the courts often had a set approach when determining the roles of the parents. Traditionally, custody was awarded to the mother, though that's not necessarily the case any longer. Courts in California and elsewhere now recognize that a father's role is much more than providing a child support

Many fathers play a significant role in the lives of their children, above and beyond the expected financial contribution. Unfortunately, the child support system has been slower to respond to these changing attitudes. There are an estimated 14 million current support orders throughout the states. Of these open cases, the majority of those parents are behind in paying support.

In many of these situations, fathers who are in arrears are prevented from having access to their children. In addition, these parents often face harsh penalties that may include wage garnishments, suspended licenses and jail sentences. To compound the problem, many of these fathers often face serious financial difficulties, including low income employment. When these parents are incarcerated for failing to make support payments, they may face more hurdles in obtaining employment in the future.

While there are parents who willfully avoid child support payments, the vast majority of them are struggling to meet their court-ordered obligations. Many professionals believe that non-monetary contributions by both parents should be given more weight by family courts. In the meantime, California parents who need a modification to their current child support orders have the right to file a formal petition in family court. An experienced family law attorney can provide information about this process and assistance in securing the reduction in payments that is needed.

Source:, "Crosnoe, Cozzolino: This Father's Day, let's take a hard look at child support policies", Robert Crosnoe and Elizabeth Cozzolino, June 9, 2017

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Victoria S. Linder Law Office
5303 Folsom Boulevard
Sacramento, CA 95819

Phone: 916-905-4805
Fax: 916-498-0127
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