When parents are separating, one of the biggest concerns is how they will financially support their children and minimize the impact of the new change on their children. To ease this financial burden, courts have the option of awarding child support. However, courts walk a fine line between ensuring the custodial parent receives enough support to cover a child’s expenses and overburdening the paying parent. Thus, child support is not always awarded, and even when it is, the appropriate amount of support is often the subject of dispute.
To learn more about when courts award child support, speak with a child support attorney at the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC. We handle cases in Huntersville, Matthews, Charlotte, Concord, Kannapolis and all surrounding areas.When Can a Custodial Parent Obtain Child Support?
North Carolina courts can award child support in a few different ways. Most often, divorcing parents provide for an agreed-upon amount of child support in a separation agreement, or the parents enter into a Voluntary Support Agreement (VSA). However, any person who provides care for a child who is living in their home can petition the court to award child support.
When seeking child support from a person believed to be the child’s father, the person asking for child support must first establish paternity, which is a legal recognition that a person is the child’s biological father. Of course, there is no legal requirement that a child’s parents were married for either party to receive child support.How Does North Carolina Calculate Child Support?
In North Carolina, we use the "income shares" model to determine the child support obligation. The North Carolina Child Support Guidelines formulated this approach with the concept of allowing the child to receive the same proportional income he or she would have received if his or her parents were living together.What Do North Carolina Courts Consider When Awarding Child Support?
The North Carolina Child Support Guidelines uses the following factors when calculating the amount of support for families:
- The number of overnights with each parent;
- The gross monthly income of each parent;
- Child care costs;
- Payments of health insurance premiums;
- Pre-existing child support obligations; and
- Extraordinary expenses such as education, extraordinary medical expenses, or travel costs.
If you have questions about child support, reach out to an experienced Charlotte child support lawyer for assistance.Do You Need to Pay Child Support if You Do Not See Your Child?
Yes, if there is a valid child support agreement or court order stating that a parent must pay child support, that parent must continue to make child support payments regardless of whether they see the child. Even if the custodial parent wrongfully denies visitation, it does not excuse the other parent’s failure to make child support payments. This is because child support and child custody are two separate legal issues, and one is not dependent on the other.What Happens if a Parent Refuses to Pay Child Support?
Child support orders are mandatory, and a parent who refuses to pay support can be held in contempt of court. The court can also withhold the paying parent’s wages to fulfill their child support obligations. If, however, the paying parent can prove that they are unable to pay the current child support amount, they can petition the court to modify the amount of child support. Of course, this does not excuse their failure to pay any outstanding support obligations.Speak with an Experienced Charlotte Child Support Lawyer for Immediate Assistance
If you have questions about child support or enforcing a child support order, reach out to the dedicated family law attorneys at the Olsinski Law Firm to set up a consultation. Our attorneys have decades of experience handling all aspects of divorce cases, including child support and child custody matters. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a Charlotte divorce lawyer, give us a call at 704-405-2580. You can also reach one of our Concord family law attorneys at 704-918-4747. We represent clients in Mecklenburg, Gaston, Cabarrus, Iredell, Rowan, and Union Counties.