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Orange County Family Law Blog

Divorce and paying for a child’s college

Many California teens have finished applying for early admission at the college of their choice. Others are still in the process of deciding which institution is right for them.

Meanwhile, college tuition is rising, having increased on average 13 percent in the last five years, according to College Board. A private college in California costs over $50,000 per year for in-state residents, and over $13,000 for public institutions. It is no wonder that parents save and plan for years to help their children get an education.

Giving your children the best parenting possible after divorce

Divorce doesn’t change the fact that you love your children. Every parent wants the best for their kids. However, divorce complicates parenting. For one thing, children are more likely to thrive with involvement from both parents. Further, parents should be unified in their approach to discipline and other child-rearing issues. When parents are divorced, they face tremendous challenges in these regards when trying to raise their children.

How can you make sure you are giving your children the best parenting possible? Quality parenting after divorce requires some focus, planning and real effort, but it is possible.

Jobs with the highest divorce rate

“An archaeologist is the best husband a woman can have. The older she gets, the more interested he is in her.” - Agatha Christie, crime novelist

Witty quotes aside, there are some professions that do indeed seem to be better suited to long-term marriage than others. A statistician, Nathan Yau, recently examined data from the 2015 Census to determine which professions had the highest and lowest divorce rates.

CA Court: Parents can lose custody even if there is no neglect

Last month, California’s Supreme Court determined that the state can take unruly kids away from their parents even if there is no finding of parental neglect and the parents are doing everything they can to control the children.

This particular case revolved around a state statute that allows the court to assume control of a child if he or she “has suffered, or there is a substantial risk that the child will suffer, serious physical harm or illness, as a result of the failure or inability of his or her parent or guardian to adequately supervise or protect the child."

Is there a cap on child support payments in California?

One question some parents have — particularly wealthy parents — is whether California places a cap on the maximum amount of monthly child support payments.

Many are surprised to learn that California is actually one of the few states that does not have a child support cap. In fact, child support payments in California are typically based solely upon a preset formula that takes into account several variables, including the incomes of both parents and custody time, among other factors. In most cases, a parent will simply need to pay whatever the formula says, and there is no limit.

Don’t make these 3 mistakes in your divorce

Getting through the divorce process unscathed is the goal of many people who are facing the ending of a marriage. Unfortunately, misconceptions and misinformation about divorce can stand in the way.

Here are three common mistakes people make while going through the divorce process. Avoiding these mistakes can help expedite the divorce process – and make it less stressful as well:

Modifying child support: Can it be done?

Navigating California’s child support laws can be difficult, particularly if you do not have any help. In many cases, parents find themselves lost in the various laws and procedures that govern this hotly contested topic.

For instance, one question many parents commonly have is whether they can ever modify their child support payments, either up or down. Or, are these payments set in stone? Well, the short answer is yes, they can be modified — but only in certain situations.

Think child support ends at 18? In California, maybe not.

In California, there are several misconceptions out there regarding the state’s child support laws — especially when it comes to how long child support needs to be paid.

For instance, some believe child support automatically ends when the child turns 18, while others think the obligation continues until he or she graduates college. Well, for many families, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

Is custody automatically given to mothers during divorce?

While some may argue that courts in the past favored mothers over fathers when it came to child custody disputes, that is simply not the case today. In fact, California law clearly states that a mother and a father "are equally entitled to custody" of their child.

However, there is one caveat to this rule: the father must be presumed to be the child's father under California law. A father will satisfy this presumption so long as he was married to the child's mother and the child was born during their marriage, or within 300 days of their divorce.

Five reasons to mediate your divorce

Just because you are going through a divorce doesn't mean the process is going to be a drawn-out battle with both sides at each other's throats. In fact, if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are willing to use divorce mediation instead of traditional divorce proceedings, you can often resolve your divorce-related issues more quickly and easily.

Essentially, mediation gives you, and your spouse, an opportunity to explain your side of the story and come up with ideas on how the two of you can reach a resolution. While there are several advantages to mediating your divorce, some of the more important ones include:

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