When California parents decide to divorce, they have to resolve numerous issues concerning their children's futures. Where their kids will live is often the first, most basic concern. Beyond that, how complex or simple the divorce process is depends on the details of a specific couple's situation. If child support is an issue, it may be possible to avoid litigation. Doing so requires a willingness on both sides to cooperate and compromise, as needed.
Parents can make their own agreement. However, it will be subject to court approval. Getting the court involved may the easiest way to avoid serious legal problems down the line if a disagreement happens to arise.
When an agreement is signed by both parents and reduced to a formal court order, it becomes legally enforceable. This means if the paying parent does not send the specified amount at the stated time, a judge can do something about it. If no agreement is signed or court approval sought, parents are typically left to deal with such problems on their own. A situation like this can quickly become contentious, especially if one of the parents involved is disregarding the agreed upon plan.
Most California parents simply want what is best for their children, including child support. Getting divorced does not mean a parent is abdicating his or her parental responsibilities and obligations. The court always has children's best interests in mind. If parents are having trouble reaching an agreement, they can ask a family law judge to step in and make decisions for them.