“I Lost My Job And I Am On Unemployment: Do I Have To Pay Child Support?”

In much of California right now, people are losing jobs in the oil and agriculture sectors, and job loss is a common problem for people who pay child support even during good economic times.

If you lose your job, you are entitled to have your child support reviewed and, in most situations, reduced. There are a few things to keep in mind however:

REDUCTION IS NO AUTOMATIC: You need to file a motion to have your support reduced. It will not be done automatically for you, even if you notify child support services that you have lost your employment.

TIMING MATTERS: the court can only reduce your support as of the date you file a motion to reduce the support. If you wait to file, you cannot have the court go back to the date that you lost your job.

UNEMPLOYMENT IS INCOME: Your support will be calculated on your unemployment checks, if you are receiving them, meaning your support will likely not go to zero, but will be reduced to the appropriate amount based on your monthly payment.

AGREEMENTS TO REDUCE MUST BE FILED WITH THE COURT: If you come to an informal arrangement with the other parent and you have a current order that is being enforced through the court system, you must file a stipulation to change the support, or you risk being found in arrears in the future.

DISCLAIMER: All legal principles quoted are valid as of the date of writing in the State of California. However, you should NEVER base your actions on a legal article, blog, or internet story, as facts in real life are complicated. You should have your case evaluated by an attorney experienced in the area of law needed for your case. In addition, there are often exceptions and potential changes to results that occur due to facts that you may think are trivial or unimportant. This article should not be taken in any way as legal advice on your specific legal matter.