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Child support: What to do and not do to prepare for a hearing

All California parents are obligated to financially provide for their children. When a married couple files for divorce or an unmarried couple decides to part ways, it often leads to child support litigation. When a case is litigated, it means the judge overseeing the case is going to be making all the decisions.

A parent knows what is best for his or her children. Problems can arise, however, if two parents disagree. This is why many child-related issues wind up being left to a judge to decide when parents cannot achieve an agreement on their own. When preparing for a child support hearing, there are several things to keep in mind.

First, it is important to check the mail often because correspondence from an attorney or court officials might arrive. Certain documents might require a response, in which case it is always best to do so as soon as possible. Full disclosure is necessary if the court is seeking information about current income, future potential earnings or any other financial issues. Falsifying information may not only complicate proceedings, it could also result in a judge finding the parent in question in contempt.

As with any court proceeding, it is never good to be tardy for a child support hearing. Worse yet, it could create serious legal problems if a parent fails to show up at all for a scheduled hearing. The more a parent knows what to expect in court, the less stressful proceedings might be. A parent can enlist support ahead of time by requesting representation from an experienced family law attorney. An attorney can protect a parent’s rights and make sure that all decisions are rendered with children’s best interests in mind.