Child support is a payment made by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent. This payment should help meet your child’s or children’s education, health, and maintenance needs. Issues of child support are not always easy to resolve. Being informed about the guidelines of child support in North Carolina will ensure you can exercise your rights. Here are some common questions regarding child support in Charlotte, NC.
How long is child support paid?
Child support is usually paid through the clerk of the court. Payments are required until the child or children graduates high school or reaches the age of 18, whichever occurs later. If the child or children become legally emancipated before their 18th birthday, payments will end.
Does North Carolina garnish wages for child support?
Wages may be garnished for up to 40% of net pay. Wage garnishment requires a court proceeding or the help of the Child Support Enforcement Office. It is only available if a parent is violating a court order for child support. Garnishment does not apply to child support only dictated by a separation agreement.
How is the amount of child support determined?
North Carolina has guidelines on the amount of child support to be paid. These amounts are based on family income and the number of children. Currently, guidelines provide child support amounts for combined family gross incomes up to $300,000 per year. If the combined gross income is greater than $300,000 per year, both parents can negotiate or ask the court to determine the amount.
If I am ordered to pay child support, must I pay?
Yes. The parents are required to share in the financial responsibility of their children. You can’t avoid payments through bankruptcy. Nor can you stop paying support because you are denied visitation. Both visitation and child support are separate obligations.
Once the court orders child support payments, you can’t modify the order without going through the court. If you fail to pay child support, you may be faced with consequences. This may include garnishment, assignment of wages, seizure of real estate and personal property, orders that bonds be posted, and the retention of income tax refunds. The court may also order retroactive payments.
Can I register a child support order in North Carolina from another state?
You may file and register a child support order from another state with the Clerk of Superior Court. You may also register a North Carolina order in the state where the other parent lives.
Is court-ordered child support affected by remarriage or children from another relationship?
Generally, either of these situations will not affect obligations to a child or children from a prior relationship. If the desire is to lower support to children from a prior relationship, the parent would need to how the current child support obligation presented an unfair burden or was unjust in some way.
Can child support in Charlotte NC be modified?
Yes, child support can be modified. If the child support is court-ordered, the party requesting the modification must show substantial and material change in circumstances. The court only considers changes since the most recent order.
The reasonable needs of the child or children, each parent’s ability to pay, and other financial factors. If child support is dictated by a separation agreement, the requesting party is required to show the amount of support necessary to meet the reasonable needs of the child or children at the time of the hearing. The trial court can disregard a prior settlement over the amount of child support, even if the parties previously deemed the amount to be fair.
These are only some of the questions regarding child support. If you have questions or concerns, consult a family law attorney. They can assist you whether you are seeking or required to pay child support. Emblem Legal in Charlotte, NC has dedicated attorneys who specialize in family law. Their extensive experience with these cases allows them to guide clients through the complex legal requirements of child support and all related issues. Contact us to discuss how we can assist you with your particular case.