For your children to grow and develop properly, they need love and support from both parents. Your son or daughter needs attention, care, and guidance from Mom AND Dad. The fact is, your children are counting on you to be there, no matter what your family situation may be.

Your help can come in many forms: the confidence you instill in your daughter when you assist her with a school project; the understanding you furnish your son when he’s having a problem with his friends; and the camaraderie you share when eating ice cream cones together on a warm summer day.

A critical component of your relationship with your children is financial support. Though not as heartwarming as being there for your daughter’s first steps or you son’s first T-Ball game, the money both parents provide their children is, nonetheless, a significant part of parents’ responsibility to their children. Besides providing for life’s more basic needs, such as food, clothing, and shelter, this money helps children expand their horizons through activities like piano lessons, scouting, and hockey camp. Financial support is a key component of the responsibility you have to your children.

One of the most important parts parents can play in the lives of their children is that of role model. Children look to their parents for guidance and often adopt the behaviors they see in their parents. By being a responsible parent, you can give your child invaluable lessons in respect, duty, and honesty that can last a lifetime.

The money a parent provides is commonly known as “child support.” Whether you’ve been paying support for many years or are a new parent, this website explains how child support works in California. The process of establishing, enforcing, and modifying a child support order can be a bewildering maze involving a county child support office, courts, judges, unfamiliar legal terms, and daunting paperwork. We hope this information can answer some of your questions about the legal system as it relates to child support cases, as well as how your case will be handled by our Department.