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Amber E.
Amber E., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1469
Experience:  Experienced practitioner in areas of Divorce, Custody, Social Security, and Contract disputes.
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My grandson is a Canadian. He has a son with an American woman.

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My grandson is a Canadian. He has a son with an American woman. They were never married but lived together briefly when he was in college in California. He has been paying child support (voluntarily) but is now going to University on a scholarship and will no longer have any income. If he is unable to continue to pay support, will he be denied access and can support be mandated when he has no income. Are the cost of his trips from British Columbia to California to visit his son taken into account when determining support. Thank you for any assistance.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Amber E. replied 6 years ago.
To answer your first question, there is really no relationship between child support and custody - they are two separate issues. If he stops paying and she denies him visitation because of it, then he may file a petition with the court to get court-ordered visitation. However, if he stops paying without court authorization, then she may file a motion for contempt against him and he would be subject to penalties such as a fine or jail time. If he will not be able to pay, then he may want to consider filing for a reduction in the amount. To answer your second question, yes the court can order that he pay support even if he has no income. The court may determine, for example, that he is voluntarily unemployed (because he is physically able to work). His decision to attend school probably won't be considered a good reason to not pay, because people do attend school and work at the same time. So far as the court is generally concerned, the child has to be supported by both parents, whether one chooses to attend school or not. And to answer your third question - yes, he may ask that the child support amount be reduced to take into consideration his travel costs. This is a common request and it is often granted, because it allows the child to maintain contact with both parents.
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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
She is living with her parents and has been going to school for the past year. He has been working for a year and sending support. Now he has been offered a scholarship to University. Does the fact that her parents are supporting her and she has continued her schooling make any difference. He is willing to still send support but cannot send the same amount.
Expert:  Amber E. replied 6 years ago.
Generally, the court does not consider the contribution of third parties except in extraordinary circumstances. He can ask that the court consider her parent's contribution, but there is no guarantee the court will. However, the court may, in its discretion, consider her "earning capacity" (just as it will his) in lieu of income. You may review the California law on child support for more information here http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=fam&group=04001-05000&file=4050-4076
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