Since the introduction of the new child maintenance law in 2017, much has changed in case law and practice. The principle remains that illegitimate children should be “treated” the same as legitimate children. In principle, a mother is to be enabled to care for her young child herself, whether or not she was married to the child’s father. This part of the child maintenance is the so-called care maintenance, which is owed in addition to the child’s cash maintenance of the child. The caring parent is expected much more strictly than in the past to expand his or her professional activities, depending on the youngest child’s age. With the “school step model”, the Federal Supreme Court has determined that, in principle, 50% gainful employment must be taken up when the child begins compulsory schooling (i.e. as early as kindergarten), which must be increased to an 80% workload when the child enters the upper school and to a full workload from the youngest child’s 16th birthday. However, the Federal Supreme Court explicitly stated that each case must still be considered and assessed in detail. There are, therefore, still exceptions to the “school step” rule.
Knowing the principles that apply in the Canton of Zurich, I can provide you with guidance and support in finding appropriate solutions, e.g. if you and your partner wish to establish child maintenance in a maintenance agreement.