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August is Child Support Awareness Month in California

Are you having trouble establishing paternity of your child because you and the baby's father aren't married? Are you having difficulty collecting court-ordered support because your ex-spouse has dropped off the radar? Is your ex-spouse self-employed and suddenly claiming that their business is faltering -- despite not making any changes to their lavish lifestyle?

These are all common problems when it comes to child support. The California Department of Child Support Services wants parents to know that there are 49 regional and county support agencies across the state to assist them.

Should you stay married to your transgender spouse?

What happens when your spouse finally announces that he or she was born into the wrong body? Whether you're in a same-sex marriage or a heterosexual marriage, navigating the emotional and relationship fallout when a spouse reveals his or her truth can be complicated for both parties. For the spouse that isn't trans, here are a few things to consider when you think about your future:

1. You may have been in love with a fiction

Are you well-off? Protect yourself when getting married

Maybe you were lucky enough to be born to a financially secure family or inherited your wealth -- or maybe you scraped hard for every penny you have. Either way, there are a few things that wealthy people do (if they're smart) when they get married to protect their assets just in case of a divorce.

If you're financially comfortable and want to stay that way following a divorce, follow these tips:

Protecting yourself in a high-conflict divorce

Maybe your spouse is just an angry person -- or maybe your spouse is an outright narcissist who can't function without trying to manipulate you and everyone else around you.

Whatever the root of the issue, you can be sure that you're in for a bumpy ride once you make the decision to divorce. Angry, narcissistic people don't take rejection well. They don't like to acknowledge any failure on their part -- so all the fault for the problems in the marriage will be laid at your feet. Their sense of being "wounded" can also be extreme. That makes many of these kinds of spouses feel like they are owed more (far, far more) than their fair share of the marital assets, custody and support.

California Supreme Court decides child support counts as income

Good parents wait to have children until they are prepared to deal with the pressure on money, time and energy that even one kid can create. Many experts argue it is even harder to raise children on one's own or after a divorce. This is partially because children often do better with set boundaries and routines, which can fall apart when parents stop working together.

Child support payments can be vital if one parent delayed a career in order to focus on rearing a couple's kids while the other becomes the main breadwinner. Child support in California, like many other states, is often calculated based on children's needs first and the parents' ability to pay second.

Wedding debt: Not worth the stress

Do you happen to have a spare $29,858 lying around? That's the new average cost of a wedding in America today -- and that price tag may cost couples in ways that go beyond mere monetary value.

Nationally, the average cost for a wedding does tend to vary greatly so your actual expenses may reflect your location. For example, folks living in Manhattan can expect their average costs (for a mid-line wedding) to hit $88,176. If you live in Mississippi, your costs will be a comparatively modest $12,769 for the same level event.

Do you feel pressured to stay in your same-sex marriage?

When same-sex couples finally gained marriage equality in 2015 thanks to the Supreme Court's Obergefell vs Hodges decision, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community rejoiced. Marriage was finally their legal right!

Unfortunately, "happy ever after" is the ending of fairytales, not a real-life wrap-up. A lot of LGBTQ couples legally married in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision -- and many of them continue to be happily married today. Others, however, have found that they aren't immune to the stresses and pressures that heterosexual couples often face in marriage.

What rights do grandparents have in California?

Are you a grandparent hoping to obtain legal visitation rights to your grandchild in California? Ultimately, it's possible -- even if your relationship with your grandchild's parents is rocky. However, it isn't necessarily a simple or easy process.

The conditions that must be met

Summer 'divorce season' is starting

There are two unofficial "divorce seasons" every year -- one in March and one in August. Those are the peak months for new clients to make their way to a divorce attorney's office for the first time. Since we're getting closer to the second divorce season of the year, let's look at what we know about divorce during the summer and how you can prepare yourself if you think it may happen to you.

Sociologists discovered the biannual pattern of divorces when they studied the number of petitions filed in Washington from 2001 to 2015. Anecdotal evidence from divorce attorneys around the country indicates that the uptick in divorce twice a year is not an isolated occurrence.

Why don't ultra-wealthy people all have prenups?

Adele's heartfelt music has brought a lot of joy to her fans -- but nobody's life is perfect. Because she and her husband seemed like a happy couple, the news of their divorce created a storm of media stories.

So did the news that the couple didn't have a prenuptial agreement. That put Adele among the ranks of the super-rich -- like Jeff Bezos, Amazon's founder -- who didn't seem to have ever anticipated a divorce.

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