In the State of California, the courts may be able to impute minimum wage earning capacity to a parent, and it is up to that parent to prove why he/she may not be able to earn or get a minimum wage job. For example, if he/she has a disability, or lacks in education or skills, medical condition, etc. The reason for this is that both parents are required to give support to their children, regardless of whether one is acting as the primary caregiver or not. The California Family Code is very clear on this:
Fam. C. 3900.
“…the father and mother of a minor child have an equal responsibility to support their child in the manner suitable to the child’s circumstances.” (Emphasis added)
Also in the Family Code:
Fam. C. 4053
“(a) A parent’s first and principal obligation is to support his or her minor children according to the parent’s circumstances and station in life.”
(b) Both parents are mutually responsible for the support of their children.”
The State adopts the statewide uniform to ensure that the state remains in compliance with federal regulations for child support guidelines. An experienced family lawyer could provide more information and guidance regarding matters such as parental responsibility for child support.