How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask LawTalk Your Own Question

LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience:  30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
LawTalk is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Doug, does a 10% Increase in visitation time Constitute for

Resolved Question:

Doug, does a 10% Increase in visitation time Constitute for Modification of permanent child-support orders?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.

Good morning Charlie,

Thank you for asking for me. The percentage figure doesn't give me enough information.

What percentage of time are you assigned under the present order, and what will be the new percentage? Hours each week are even better.

Doug

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Basic 20% now has increased to 30%
Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.

Hi Charlie,

Thanks for the additional information.

While there is the general rule that courts won't modify a child support order unless there has been a "material change of circumstances", there aren't any black and white guidelines for judging whether that material change of circumstances has occurred. Instead it is simply left up to the discretion of the judge.

However, the parenting time is only one small aspect of the child support calculation in CA. Much more important is the respective income of the parents.

While form a purely mathematical basis, a single 10% overall change in parenting time will result in a small decrease in child support. For the typical couple, a change like the one you describe will usually only amount to a change of less than $25 to $50 a month, and depending on the incomes of the parents, sometimes much less than $25 a month. Because of this, there is a significant risk that any Modification Motion you make will not be successful.

In fact a 10% change in respective incomes would generally have an impact many times greater than a similar percentage change in parenting time---so as you can see the relatively small change in parenting time is not typically a good justification for a Motion for Modification. I'm sorry.

You may reply back to me again if you have additional questions, and I will continue to assist you.


I wish you the best in your future,

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.
Hi Charlie,

In follow up, by inserting all of the needed information into this calculator, you can approximate the change you might see if your sought a Modification: https://www.cse.ca.gov/ChildSupport/cse/guidelineCalculator#

Thank you once again for your positive rating of my service. It is always my pleasure to assist you and I hope than you will continue to ask for me on JustAnswer as future needs arise.

I welcome you to request my assistance in any future legal questions you may have, by simply placing my name in the first sentence of your new question.

Thanks again.

Doug
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
would I be able to get a subpoena of the financial records on my ex-wife's current boyfriend to prove that she is "taken care of" and that she is And has been unemployed due to the fact that she no longer has to work and no longer wants to work? Not only am I trying to base child-support modification off of the 10% increase of visitation time, but also the fact that she is no longer on unemployment as of February 2013 and that she has not been looking for work because she no longer has to And that her income should be based off of what she was previously making which was $2500 a month back in 2012, And not base it on the unemployment income she was receiving when the judge ordered child support which was $1400 a month.

That would warrant a big increase in her income right?
Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.

Hi Charlie,

No, the financial records of your ex's boyfriend are privileged and not subject to subpoena. You can argue that she is cohabitating and that her expenses are therefore less---but the boyfriend’s finances are off-limits.

However, there is a CA law allowing you to determine whether a change of financial circumstances has occurred so you can decide whether to apply for a support modification.

Up to once a year after the divorce or support order, either of you can demand from the other that they provide you with a current income and expense declaration accompanied by her for last year. (CA Family Code sections 3663, 3664, 3665). If she doesn’t reply within 35 days and you seek a modification, the court can also issue monetary sanctions against her for the refusal. (CA Family Law sections 3664(b)-(f), 3667).

You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.


I wish you the best in 2013,

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Hypothetically speaking, let's say
1) my ex-wife agrees to more visitation time with me and the kids from 20% to 30%.
2) I agree to keep Interim child support of $2000/mo to remain permanent child support.
3) The judge signs the judgment and our divorce is finalized this month October with the above as mentioned.

In the state of California, is there a timeframe that I need to abide by to apply for a Downward modification of child support?

Can i go in and ask To modify child support three months after the judgment was signed?

Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.
You asked: In the state of California, is there a timeframe that I need to abide by to apply for a Downward modification of child support?

Can i go in and ask To modify child support three months after the judgment was signed?
The judge typically will not even consider a modification for at least a year after the final decree, absent emergent circumstances such as a child dying or you becoming fully disabled---drastic things like that.

Doug
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
You said, "Up to once a year after the divorce or support order, either of you can demand from the other that they provide you with a current income and expense declaration accompanied by her for last year. (CA Family Code sections 3663, 3664, 3665). If she doesn’t reply within 35 days and you seek a modification, the court can also issue monetary sanctions against her for the refusal. (CA Family Law sections 3664(b)-(f), 3667)."

Since she is no longer working out of her own free will.
1) Could I demand her to provide her income & expense declaration for the last year to prove to the judge that my child support be modified based on this fact? Because she is fully capable of working and making $2500/ mo. At the time Of divorce, she claimed unemployment income of $1400 and that is what child support is based off of currently. That's almst a 50% increase in her income if the judge would impute her capable income.

2) if the final decree happened in December 2013, what's the earliest time I can go in and ask for the income and expense declaration from her to try and modify chid support?

Thank you!

Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Hi Charlie,

You wrote:
Since she is no longer working out of her own free will.
1) Could I demand her to provide her income & expense declaration for the last year to prove to the judge that my child support be modified based on this fact? Because she is fully capable of working and making $2500/ mo. At the time Of divorce, she claimed unemployment income of $1400 and that is what child support is based off of currently. That's almst a 50% increase in her income if the judge would impute her capable income. The code section cited is for after the divorce decree is ordered by the court. It is for modifications of support. You are not yet to your decree and the discovery process---interrogatories, requests for production of documents----is how you seek this information now. You will want to serve formal discovery to get the income if she has not already provided it.

If you have not sought to have income imputed yet, and the decree has not been issued, then you will want to do that before the final hearing and deal with the imputation of income.


2) if the final decree happened in December 2013, what's the earliest time I can go in and ask for the income and expense declaration from her to try and modify chid support?



If the decree is issued this month (as you said Dec. 2013), then you will not likely be able to have a modification motion heard for at least a year.
And the code cited allows you to go back a year after the decree and ask for the financial information.

You may reply back to me again if you have additional questions, and I will continue to assist you.

I wish you well in your future,

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I have been sitting on my divorce because I have been afraid to rock the boat with her and her attorney since I am no longer represented by an attorney. I have decided to just go forward and agree with what they want for now so I can simply get the divorce done once and for all. Even if I agree, nothing changes for the worst. I am still stuck with paying the same amount of child support and I am still stuck with only seeing the kids every other weekend anyway.

I plan on going back to Modify child support and child visitation a year after the final decree. She has been letting me have the kids overnight on Sundays where I take them to school on Monday mornings and she will continue with this schedule because It gives her an extra day without the kids where she can go out and travel and have fun herself anyway.

I plan on basing child support and child visitation modification off the fact that I have been seeing the kids not just from Friday afternoon to Sunday evening as in the final decree for the last 2 years but that I have actually been having them from Friday afternoon to Monday mornings along. On top of that, the Fact that she is still unemployed and that she is unemployed by choice, her income should be recalculated. She's capable of making double the amount that was imputed into the child support calculator. They imputed her unemployment income which expired in Feb 2013.

I am hoping that it will be significant enough for the judge to allow the modifcation. It is in the best interest of the children that I keep them on Sunday nights because that is what has been happening for the last two years.

Because I am so close to the final decree, I thought it might be best to get it over with and deal with the modification next year.

I would like your input please. Thank you Doug.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Hi Charlie,

You said: I plan on basing child support and child visitation modification off the fact that I have been seeing the kids not just from Friday afternoon to Sunday evening as in the final decree for the last 2 years but that I have actually been having them from Friday afternoon to Monday mornings along. On top of that, the Fact that she is still unemployed and that she is unemployed by choice, her income should be recalculated. She's capable of making double the amount that was imputed into the child support calculator. They imputed her unemployment income which expired in Feb 2013. And these are solid arguments for having the child support decreased next year, when you file for Modification.
I thought it might be best to get it over with and deal with the modification next year. You have mentioned that before and I agree, it is a good strategy.

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thank you so much for your expertise. I truly value your opinion and you are my go to expert!!!! I hope you don't mind my constant questions!!!!!

Merry Christmas Doug!!!!
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Merry Christmas to you too, Charlie.

I enjoy working with you and helping you to understand the law and the court system. It is always a pleasure to work with you!

Doug

Customer: replied 7 months ago.

Hi Doug!


Now that I have a plan to send over my marital settlement agreement version to my ex's attorney, is there a specific was I have to send it to them?


 


Can I simply drop it off in the mailbox and wait to hear back from her attorney or do I have to have it delivered via certified mail? Since I am representing myself, I wanted to make sure I did it the correct way.


 


Thanks!

Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Hi Charlie,

Thanks for thinking of me.

Actually, if all you are doing is proposing something---like your proposed Marital Settlement Agreement, there is no need to do anything but get it to the attorney---first class mail---and you don't need a proof of service form. All you are doing at this point is negotiating.

Regular mail is fine, or you can send it Priority and get a receipt to confirm delivery.

Have a great New Year Charlie!!

Doug



LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Perfect! That's what I did. Just sent it first class mail.

Usually, how long does it take for the attorney to get back to me about it?

Will they let me know they received it or should I call to confirm receipt in a week?

Happy almost New Year to you too!!!!
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Hey Charlie,

Don't expect to hear from the attorney for at least 15 to 30 days. He has to review it, meet with your soon-to-be-ex, perhaps prepare a counter offer and then send it to you. That is reality. There is no need to call them. Just give them some time so you don’t appear too anxious to get it done.

Have a great evening Charlie!!

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27888
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Last | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    6424
    27+ years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6336
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    5987
    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    5773
    JD, 15 years legal experience including family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BrianTMayer/2010-01-06_200119_BM.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Family Law Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3810
    Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TU/TUSA/2012-6-6_55219_test.64x64.png Thoreau (T-USA)'s Avatar

    Thoreau (T-USA)

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2634
    Attorney