Support Enforcement

PRACTICE AREAS

ENFORCEMENT OF SUPPORT ORDERS

There are numerous alternatives for administering child and spousal support orders, as well as child custody rulings.

WAGE ASSIGNMENT SUPPORT ORDERS

California law dictates that courts announce an earnings assignment for all support orders. This suggests the payer spouse’s place of employment must pay directly to support to its recipient. This is obligatory for courts establishing or revising a support order [Ca Fam Sec.5230(a)].

The one exemption is when the individual parties come to an agreement themselves on support. If the liable party neglects to make proper payments, then the Wage Assignment Order obligates the individual’s place of employment to pay the support out of the payer's paycheck.

MOTION FOR DETERMINATION OF ARREARAGES

A motion for determination of arrearages becomes into play when there is a disagreement over the value of support one individual owes another. If the amount is meaningful, this motion can reach a court hearing aimed to identify the total amount of support orders in issue. Both sides of the argument can request for this type of hearing. A district attorney can additionally use a motion for determination of arrearages when a spouse argues the back support they owe. The cumulative amount of measured support can involve a significant rate of 10% each year.

ELECTRONIC FUNDS TRANSFER / CHILD SUPPORT SECURITY ACCOUNT

In some instances, spouses who are obligated to contribute child support can be ordered to deposit up to a year’s worth of support payments into an interest-bearing account held for the child. This is used to secure constant support from individuals do not have a clear source of constant income. This Child Support Security account acts as a secured child support payment. If required, payments from this account will satisfy any payments that are late by ten days or longer [California Family Code Sections 4560, 4561, 4570].

WRIT OF EXECUTION

This variety of writ allows a person to request the court order the sale of an individual’s assets and have the proceeds transferred to the party that is owed. A writ of seizure can be administered against property as well as bank accounts to settle past-due support payments.

CONTEMPT

A contempt charge is suited to a party that doesn’t obey an order despite full recognition of its presence and the party’s ability to meet its requirements. To find an individual in contempt, the charge must be verified “beyond a reasonable doubt,” which puts the responsibility of evidence on the accusing party. Infractions, such as failing to pay child support orders or obeying custody orders, are two instances that could influence a contempt charge. Then penalties include jail time and fines.

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