What are the major factors used in calculating child support?

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm

How child support is calculated in Orange County divorce cases can be perplexing and even frustrating. But there is a method to the madness.

There is a child support guideline formula in the state of California that is used to determine the appropriate amount of money due to the parent who has legal custody. Net income and the quantity of time each parent spends with the children are two major factors in calculating child support payments.

With these two main factors in mind, the California Family Court calculates child support based on each parent’s net income and the amount of time a child spends with either parent. There are additional factors in calculating child support payments, such as: child care expenses, medical insurance premiums, home mortgage payments, tax filing status and any other expenses that can impact the family’s financial situation.

A judge will begin the process by looking very closely at the amount of time each parent spends with the children. This amount of time is then entered into a complex formula that is used to calculate support payments, often referred to as the “J Factor.” This element is named so because the California Child Support Guideline operates using a mathematical formula in which “J” refers to the amount of time the non-custodial parent spends with the child or children. The formula used in calculating child support is the same in every case and in every court in California. Because the formula used to calculate the child support amounts is complicated, the court most commonly utilizes a computer program called a Dissomaster™ to calculate the monthly child support amounts.

An experienced family law attorney will know how to negotiate what gets calculated into the non-custodial parent’s net income. This can include bonuses, commissions, overtime pay or any other form of income that occurs on a regular basis. Such calculations will help to ensure that the proper amount of child support is received each month.

Because basic child support doesn’t include child care or uninsured medical expenses, the court will consider these expenses in addition to the guideline support. This is called a mandatory add-on. Generally, each adult is responsible for paying half of the child care expenses if the custodial parent is employed full time.

Gerald A. Maggio is an Orange County divorce attorney, in Irvine, California.   For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com.

How should I prepare myself for the deposition in my Orange County divorce case?

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm

Legal discovery in divorce cases is itself very broad, and your deposition can seem very invasive and even scary. But preparation is the key to a better resolution.

Before the deposition, a deponent should review any documents that they reviewed as part of an expert report or, if the deponent is a party, any documents that have been submitted to the court and/or opposing counsel. Parties in a divorce proceeding should review pleadings and affidavits, interrogatory answers and documents responses. It is not necessary to memorize any statement or document. Some questions may arise during the deposition, especially financial ones, to which you won’t remember the exact numbers. It is permissible, even preferable, if you refer to the documents that have been submitted to the opposing attorney. For instance, “That information is on my tax returns.” If you continue to be pressed by the opposing attorney, state that it will be necessary to review the document in order to respond further.

Behavior at a deposition plays an important role. Think before you speak. Listen very carefully to each question. If there is anything that isn’t understood in the question, ask for it to be repeated or rephrased. Pay attention to the questions, there may well be double meanings and assumptions that you have testified to something that you didn’t.

After understanding the question, answer honestly and in a straightforward manner. Less is more. Don’t worry about a “bad” answer, just give right answers. If something is unknown or being estimated, make it very clear. Take your time answering. Think and formulate your answer before speaking. Remember to speak slowly and clearly, as this is all being transcribed. If you must point to something, describe what you are pointing to.

Do not argue. Never argue with the attorney or refuse to answer any questions, unless instructed by your counsel. Refusing to answer is only playing into the opposing attorney’s game plan; the opposing attorney may consider such a response as evasive or having struck a nerve. Joking is also a no-no. Humor doesn’t go well in the transcript, coming off as insincere or crude.

Do not lie. Always answer truthfully, your lawyer can deal with the truth effectively but is hindered when the truth is kept hidden.

Gerald A. Maggio is an Orange County divorce attorney, in Irvine, California.   For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce attorney Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com.

 
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