California Child Custody & Support Reform 2022
California Child Custody & Support Reform 2022
Why this petition matters
The State of California does no due diligence for the true well being of children when presented with custody differences in family law, which varies from county to county.
I went through a frustrating divorce in 2019 with 2 children aged 4 and 9 months. Two little girls. During the divorce there was so much animosity and resistance to conduct thoughtful wording behind the visitation agreement. I unknowingly removed myself from my daughters daily lives when during an emergency order hearing I agreed to let my 4 year old attend school temporarily with her father while I adjusted to my living situation after newly being separated. I sat in a court room after agreeing in mediation that my children could be with their father during the school week to support my 4 year in being enrolled in preschool with the assumptions I would get the girls as agreed in a previously notarized divorce agreement for school once things settled down for me. My ex husband smiled and said “of course”. Little did I know, without an attorney, without any legal knowledge - that I gave up my children for the foreseeable future. Thanks to the legal term “status quo” my 9 month old was said to have established community. My 4 year olds preschool was more important than being with her mother.
I was told that my entire prior agreement for child custody, which was notarized by myself and my ex husband was no longer a legally binding document. I learned that because I agreed to the temporary orders, those now superseded any prior agreement. I slingshotted a series of events that I would not be able to recover from.
The State of California should be held accountable for making judgement with little known background on the parents and their living environments. My beautiful daughters have been left to a man who would rather see them in daycare from 6am to 6pm and not only make me pay an ungodly amount of child support because he has them the majority of the time, The State of California forces me to pay half of his daycare costs.
I was told in the County of Lake, where my divorce occurred that for a small fee of $10,000 they could assign someone to review both households and make a determination of what is best for the children. I was also told there were only 2 opportunities for families to request this each year. If you were not chosen, you had no option. If the 2 were already booked, you were out of luck. As I stated, I went into the divorce representing myself. I didn’t have anywhere near that much money to fight for my children. My family couldn't be of financial support. I had to sit in a courtroom and listen to an attorney call me a money hungry individual who didn’t care for my children but only wanted half of the equity in the house I left behind.
The judgement for my divorce forced me to take on my entire student loan debt accumulated during the marriage. I had to pay back the payments made during the marriage. I had no equity in the home. I had no savings. I didn't have my children as I had been promised and expected to have them. During that marriage I had 2 children, supported my ex husbands goals to succeed in his industry while I stayed at home and brought up our first child. I put my career on hold to gain a bachelors and gave my first child the opportunity to be home with a parent and not be placed in daycare.
That divorce showed me that the trust I put into people, the law, logic - meant nothing. My eyes opened wide to what humans are capable to do, say and lie about just to hurt others.
Today I am dealing with child support calculations that are based off the earnings I now make as a senior financial professional which is almost double what it was before my higher education was complete. I have MY employment because of MY bachelors degree that was ordered was my entire responsibility to pay for in full. I'm not anywhere near being able to pay that off.
IF DURING A DIVORCE A SPOUSE REFUSES TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE ACCUMULATED EDUCATIONAL DEBT OF THE OTHER SPOUSE THEY SHOULD NOT BE ABLE TO OBTAIN ANY MONETARY GAIN FROM IT.
- CALCULATIONS FOR SUPPORT SHOULD BE SUSPENDED TO THE ANNUAL RATE OF PAY THE SPOUSE MADE PRIOR TO ANY DEGREES OBTAINED AND A 2% COST IN LIVING ADJUSTMENT BE MADE EVERY YEAR AFTER UNTIL SUPPORT IS NO LONGER ELIGIBLE
The ex husband has gone through 3 different positions in the last year and half and has been unemployed since last July 2021. When I petitioned to the court that calculations should be on his 'imputed income' he went out and got the quickest position he could, a substitute teaching position. This is a noble field to those that want to help and grow in the field of academia, but this is a joke for what this person has his multiple degrees in, his years of training. All to show the State of California he is 'trying' and is no longer capable to work in the field of his training and he should not have calculations based on his average earnings over the years, but now, 30% of his previous earnings. . I have been told by the court I have to prove my ex has opportunity to gain employment - not him. Me. I have to come up with positions that state pay scales that he could apply for. I can show this man has been employed in his field for the last 25 years but in order for the State of California to legally make a judgement on 'imputed income' I have to go job hunting in his field and supply job opportunities with pay scales. This is shocking. His income per day as a substitute teach does not cover his daily daycare expense. It is obviously clear he has no intention to work when the courts keep assessing I pay him more money.
I’m asking you join me in making the courts responsible to:
- Hire accountants to do the work of child support calculations, budget trackers and expense analysis.
- ADJUST THE DISSO MASTER CALCULATION TO COMPUTE STANDARD ALLOWED DEDUCTIONS AND THEN USING NET INCOME SUBTRACT STANDARD USUAL EXPENSES TO GENERATE A LOGICAL NUMBER FOR SUPPORT. If someone's take home pay is $4,000 per month - how can the state of California asses child support a $1,000 monthly? How are families supposed to cope with this hit to their income? I can honestly tell you I have never spent $500.00 on a child in a month PLUS daycare and the n notion that this is what a parent should spend is not in line with reality and with current reasonable salaries.
- Hire representatives to do home evaluations to ensure the children in placement are in the right hands. This is expected in our foster care and adoption services - it should be the same representation for children living with biological placement based on court orders.
If you are a parent, friend, family member, caring member of the community who see's the injustice this process places on families - stand with me and demand reform to the custody and child support system. Sign and share this petition.
This cannot continue as it only allows the liars and the cheats the upper hand by using legal phrases like “status quo” when what’s most important is the well-being of the children and making sure they are with the parent who can support them emotionally AND financially.
***** I would like to thank my now husband, and ever eternal love, for standing with me through all of this heartache with my two children from a prior marriage. Thanks to you I have endured, we have endured. We now share 2 more children of our own and thanks to him I have the large wonderful family I have always dreamed of. Thank you Constantin. You are my rock.