Legal Document Assistants



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A Paralegal is someone who works for and is supervised by an attorney. By law a paralegal cannot be contracted by someone other than an attorney, this includes the general public. The “Illegal Paralegal” is someone who is preparing documents for the general public and is not a Registered and Bonded Legal Document Assistant. Paralegals do not have the same legal requirements as LDAs.


Legal Document Assistant, LDA is a paralegal who registers at the county recorder’s office, as an LDA, and files a bond. A Legal Document Assistant can be contracted by the general public and consumers to prepare legal documents at the client’s direction. An LDA has special training and certifications, such as graduating from an ABA Approved Legal Assisting Program. They are also required to maintain continuing education credits.


Legal Document Assistants are professionals that are legally able to prepare legal documents at the client’s direction. An LDA is able to prepare legal documents without the direct supervision of an attorney, unlike a Paralegal. However, neither an LDA or a Paralegal are attorneys and cannot represent you in court.



What Is Child Support?

Child Support is an ongoing, periodic payment made by one spouse to the other for the financial benefit of the child following the end of a divorce. Child support can be a mutually agreed upon amount or it can be a specific amount that is demanded by the court. You can click the Child Support Calculator link below or visit California Department of Child Support Services website to utilize their Guideline Calculator to determine how much child support you should be paying.

How To Calculate Child Support

Just in case you didn't believe it was complicated, here is the formula California uses to calculate child support:
CS = K (HN - (H%) (TN)).
Here's what the letters mean:

CS is the child support amount. This is what the formula will calculate once you've plugged in all of your information. The amount will be for one child. If a couple has more children, they must multiply the CS amount by a figure set out in the law, which depends on the number of children.

K is the combined total of both parents' income to be allocated for child support. (The amount of the parents' combined income that must be devoted to child support, in turn, depends on how much the parents earn and on how much time the higher-earning parent spends with the child.)

HN stands for high net: The net monthly disposable income of the parent who earns more.

H% is the approximate percentage of time that the high earner has or will have primary physical responsibility for the children compared to the other parent. (For example, that parent might have the children 25% of the time, while the other parent has them 75% of the time.) In cases in which parents have different time-sharing arrangements for different children, H% equals the average of the approximate percentages of time the high earner parent spends with each child.

TN is the combined total net monthly disposable income of both parents.

Now you can see why everyone—including lawyers and judges—uses a calculator! Generally speaking, though, the greater the disparity between the two parents' income and the less time the higher earning parent spends with the children, the more child support that parent will owe.

Department of Child Support Calculator

Guideline Calculator

Child Visitation Schedules

Parenting schedules overview
Learn about the various types of schedules, plus how to actually get yours down on paper.

50/50 schedules
Schedules like alternating weeks, 2 weeks each, 3-4-4-3, 2-2-5-5, 2-2-3 and alternating every 2 days.

60/40 schedules
Schedules like every extended weekend, 4-3 and Ackerman.

70/30 schedules
Schedules like every weekend, 5-2, every 3rd week and every 3rd day.

80/20 schedules
Schedules like alternating weekends, 1st/3rd/5th weekends, 2nd/4th/5th weekends and every 3rd weekend.

Age-based schedules
Tips for creating age-appropriate custody schedules whether your child is a newborn or a teenager.

Schedules for special circumstances
Schedule guidelines for temporary court orders, parents who live far apart, parents in the military, etc.

Click below for examples of different visitation schedules that might best fit your situation.

Visitation Schedules

Sole Custody vs. Joint Custody

Sole Custody is when one spouse has exclusive physical and legal custody of the shared spouses child. With Sole Custody the other spouse can not have any responsibility over the child. Joint Custody is when an agreement for shared custody between spouses over said child has been made whether it be between spouses or court ordered. This agreement allows both parents to share custody and have time and legal responsibility over said child.



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