Legal


Q: Does your office represent me?

A:  No. Our office does not represent either party or the child(ren) in the action.

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Q: I just received a Summons and Complaint.  What does this mean? 

A: You are being sued.  You have 30 days to file an answer in order to be heard by the court.  The lawsuit alleges that you are the parent of each child named in the complaint.  The lawsuit proposes that you be required to provide child support and medical support for the child(ren).  If you fail to file an answer, the proposed judgment attached to the complaint will become a final order.

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Q: I would like to resolve my case without going to court. Is that an option?

A:  Yes.  You may enter into a stipulation (agreement) by contacting our office.  The stipulation must be approved by the court to become a judgment or order.  If you come to our office in person to review whether a stipulation is appropriate, please bring photo identification and recent pay stubs.

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Q: What happens if I do not file an answer or enter into a stipulation?

A:  The court will enter a default judgment based on the requests in the complaint.  The proposed judgment attached to the complaint will become the order of the court.

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Q: I do not think I am the father of a child listed on the complaint. What do I do?

A: If you do not believe you are the father of a child listed on the complaint, you should file an answer.  Once your answer is filed, a court date will be set.  The court may order genetic testing.  If you fail to file an answer, the court will find that you are the father.

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Q: What should I do if I disagree with the child support amount listed on the complaint? 

A: You should file an answer to be heard by the court.  You may also provide our office current income information to see whether a stipulation can be reached.

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Q: How did you arrive at this child support amount?

A: The child support amount is based upon the income and custody/visitation information we received before filing the Summons and Complaint.  Income information is obtained from Employment Development Department, employer verifications, and other sources.   We also try to contact both parties to obtain information prior to filing the Summons and Complaint.  The income and timeshare information is input into the guideline calculator (https://www.cse.ca.gov/ChildSupport/cse/guidelineCalculator) and the presumptively correct amount of child support is determined.

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Q: If I am an active-duty service member, can I get additional assistance?

A: Active-duty members of the military are entitled to certain protections pursuant to the Service members Civil Relief Act (SCRA), including appointment of an attorney to protect their rights under the SCRA.  The attorney does not represent the service member​ for the merits of the case.

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