Kevin Qualls Family Law
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Child support for special needs children

Many residents of Orange County, California, have children with special needs. Whether stemming from a learning disability, a medical problem or some other unique issue, a child with special needs often requires extra medical care and educational help. This in turn will often mean parents must pay additional costs on behalf of their child.

When parents are separated, these additional costs may have to be dealt with by way of a child support order. Like other states, however, California has set guidelines that its courts are expected to follow when it comes to ordering child support. Generally speaking, these guidelines call for a formulaic approach that heavily weighs each parent's income in a child support calculation.

Fortunately, the guidelines allow the judges of this state to deviate from the amount of support the guidelines call for in order to meet the special educational or medical needs of a child. This leeway allows judges to remain relatively consistent in the amount of child support they order from to case to case while being able to account for the best interests of an individual child, including one who has special needs.

However, getting extra support to cover the educational and medical needs of a child with a particular condition is not automatic. A judge will expect a parent to present evidence of the extra expenses as well as evidence showing that these expenses are indeed necessary.

A parent may not always know exactly what information a judge is looking for in these sorts of cases, which is why a parent who needs extra support to care for their special needs child may want to ask their family law attorney any questions they have about support.

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Kevin Qualls Family Law
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