Law Office of

Maria Caroline Engfelt

2950 Buskirk Avenue, Suite 315 Walnut Creek, California 94597

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Office: 925-262-8432

Fax: 925-262-8428 Email Us

Child support

Temporary support is determined by DissoMaster TM , a complex software program used by the court.  The amount of support owed is calculated by factoring in the average monthly gross income of both parties and the time each party spends with the child. The court will generally order the amount determined by DissoMaster TM  to be paid and may even make the amount higher, but never lower. In fact, the only way the child support payment will be lowered is if certain hardship factors, such as unemployment, are entered into DissoMaster TM initially. Unless the parties agree otherwise, this guideline support becomes the default payment. Child support is required until the child reaches 18 years of age, or 19 if the child is still a full-time high school student. A parent may voluntarily pay for college but they are not required by law to do so.

Spousal maintenance/spousal support

Permanent spousal support is awarded in the final divorce decree, while temporary spousal support is determined via DissoMaster TM , which factors in the incomes of both parties. In making its determination on permanent spousal support the court will consider a variety of factors under California Family Code 4320 including length of the marriage, the health and age of both parties, earning ability, whether support was given to the other spouse while they earned a higher level of education, and the assets of both parties, among others. Contrary to popular belief, men can obtain spousal support just as easily as women.

California public policy dictates that both parties become financially independent. Therefore if the parties have suitable skills and can become trained to find full-time employment, the court will strongly encourage them to become self-supporting. If a party refuses to work or threatens to quit working if the other seeks a divorce, the court can order a vocational evaluation to determine what the party is qualified to do or could be earning. Based on the results of the vocational evaluation, the court can then impute income. 

Please note in marriages of less than 10 years, support is generally ordered for half the term of the marriage, while in marriages of 10 years or more, the length of time support is paid is entirely up to the judge and could continue indefinitely.

Please contact the Law Office of Maria Caroline Engfelt to discuss your rights regarding spousal and child support.

Located in Walnut Creek, California, the Law Office of Maria Caroline Engfelt represents clients throughout the East Bay and the San Francisco Bay Area, including Concord, Pleasant Hill, Lafayette, Orinda, Danville, Berkeley, Martinez, Pittsburg, Antioch, Orinda, Vallejo, Piedmont, Hayward, Union City, San Leandro, San Ramon, Oakland, Pleasanton, Brentwood, Oakley, Dublin, and Bay Point. Our representation spans Contra Costa County and Alameda County.


Walnut Creek Spousal and Child Support Lawyer

Attorney Maria Caroline Engfelt, founding attorney of the Law Office of Maria Caroline Engfelt, has a thorough understanding of child support and spousal support matters as they relate to divorce in the state of California.

During a free initial phone consultation, Ms. Engfelt takes the time to carefully listen to the facts of her clients' cases in order to estimate the length and amount of any support paid. She also assists with modification and enforcement of child support and alimony orders. Please contact her Walnut Creek, California firm today.

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Law Office of Maria Caroline Engfelt

961 Ygnacio Valley Road, Walnut Creek, CA 94596

Tel: (925) 262-8432

Fax: (925) 262-8428