Riverside, CA asked in Child Support for California

Q: I was served with child support papers and we have 3 kids and watch them evenly?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Chris M. Bradford
Chris M. Bradford
  • Santa Monica, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: When you were served with papers you should also have been served with blank forms for you to fill out. Use those forms and follow the instructions. If there are no blank forms, call up the office where the papers came from and ask for the blank forms that you fill out and send back. File your papers even if they are late. Keep a copy and have someone else, other than you, mail a copy to the other side. That person also needs to fill out a "Proof of Service" form.

If the forms are from Child Support Services, call them up and ask for their help in filling out the forms. The most important form in a child support case is the Income and Expense Declaration, form FL-150. You must also attach your proof of income for the past 60 days to the back of that form. It also must have Proof of Service form on the back of that is signed by someone other than you, who is at least 18 years old or older. You need help with all this to make sure the forms are filled out correctly.

You will also need to fill out a form called "Responsive Declaration" which also needs a Proof of Service form. In that form you would explain how you have the kids and watch them evenly. There are other points that you could possibly make depending on the circumstances.

Be sure to show up for the hearing. If you ignore the matter you will lose.

Even if you missed the court date, in some cases there is still something you can do. You need a consultation.

Also consider using the Self-Help Center nearest you.

All 58 counties in California have some type of Self-Help Center. The people at the Self-Help Center help you fill out family law forms for free. They can’t do everything in family law, but they will help you with all the basics. The downside is that they don’t have a lot of time to spend with you, and often there is a line to get in to see them. The upside is that it is free. So if you have more time than money, go to the Self-Help Center for divorce, custody, child support, visitation, paternity and domestic violence paperwork.

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