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Posted By Fair Cadora, APC

Due to the difficulty of calculating incomes, necessary expenses, and various costs of each spouse after a divorce, many divorces actually end without establishing child support payments. Only later when it becomes clear that the primary custodial parent needs financial assistance from their ex-spouse does child support come fully into view. This can lead to the question of back child support, or child support payments the receiving spouse would have obtained had child support been calculated and established the moment the divorce was filed or finalized. In many cases, the spouse who ends up paying child support will not feel obligated to pay back child support, so what can be done to collect it?

Family law courts generally need to see three things before approving of back child support payments:

  1. Lack of expected support: Were not offered any sort of financial support from your ex-spouse in terms of money to use towards your child’s upbringing? If so, it can be used to show that your ex-spouse has generally neglected his or her parental responsibilities and left you and your child wanting.

  2. Attempted collection: Before getting the court involved with your child support case, the court typically wants to see that you have made an attempt on your own to collect backed child support. In doing so, you can show both that you are concerned about the absent support and that your ex-spouse is not.

  3. Paternity proof: In cases where the noncustodial parent is the father, the court will have to see proof of paternity before approving of back child support payments. Paternity can be established when the child is born and willingly by the father by signing the birth certificate. If this did not happen, you may need to petition for a paternity test.

In addition to these legalities involving back child support payments, you will need to be prepared to show accurately how much should have been given to you. Using bills, receipts, necessary transactions, medical costs, and other such evidence from that time period is crucial. Try not to miss anything important, for if the back child support is approved for a certain time period, you will not likely get another shot to collect more later on.

For the legal guidance and representation you might need in such a case, you can turn to Fair Cadora, APC and our San Diego divorce lawyers. People throughout Southern California know they can depend on our law firm when they need a compassionate attorney on their side through family law disputes and some of life’s most difficult challenges. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation, during which you can tell us all about what is going on.

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