At The Law Offices of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, our attorneys understand the concerns of those who are paying child support and those who are receiving support payments. We represent both mothers and fathers in North Carolina in a spectrum of support-related matters.
If you are going through divorce or simply trying to establish paternity, we will help you ensure that your child support order is set up appropriately from day one and fully accounts for your financial situation and your child's needs.
Here are a few commonly asked questions about child support:
- Who determines the child support amount? The amount is presumptively determined by the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines, which take into account both parents' incomes and certain other expenses. The Child Support Guidelines are also based on the number of overnights each parent has with the child, so the child custody arrangement has a significant effect on the amount of support. Section 50-13.4(c) of the North Carolina General Statute states, "Payments ordered for the support of a minor child shall be in such amount as to meet the reasonable needs of the child for health, education, and maintenance, having due regard to the estates, earnings, conditions, accustomed standard of living of the child and the parties, the child care and homemaker contributions of each party, and other facts of the particular case." The court may deviate from the amount determined by the Guidelines if that amount exceeds or does not meet the reasonable needs of the child, while considering the party's ability to pay.
- How long does the obligation to pay child support last? Generally, the obligation to pay child support will end when the child is emancipated, is 18 years old and has completed high school, or becomes 20 years old if still in high school.
- The other parent is refusing to pay support. What can I do? If you have custody of the children and are not receiving support, you should speak with a lawyer concerning your rights. Our lawyers can pursue all available legal remedies on your behalf.
- I can't afford the support payments anymore. Do I have options? Yes; if you have undergone a change in circumstances (such as the loss of your job), you may be eligible to request a child support modification. We can assist you with requesting such a change. If you wait until you are delinquent on your child support before filing a motion to modify child support, the arrearage owed will not be canceled out or modified, even if you are successful in modifying your future support obligations.
Call The Law Offices of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, at 828-848-8776 (toll free at 888-321-0494) to arrange an initial consultation today. Alternately, you can contact our Hickory law office via email. $100 for a one hour consultation.