Raleigh Child Support Lawyer

Child support is intended to shelter children from the fallout of a messy breakup. After all, divorce and separation are adult problems that should not hinder the ability of children to lead safe, healthy, and productive lives. In essence, child support is at the core of the concept of parenting in that it centers around providing for the needs of one’s children.

If you are looking for answers to questions concerning the formula for calculating child support, allow a Raleigh child support lawyer to shed light on the subject. An attorney well-versed in the relevant laws can represent your interests so that important particulars do not go unnoticed.

Laws Governing Child Support in Raleigh

Section 50-13.4(c) of the North Carolina General Statutes governs child support and states that courts must consider the reasonable needs of the child in terms of health, education, and maintenance when deciding upon the appropriateness of a child support award. This may include child care contributions by each parent and the standard of living of the parents and the child.

Section 50-13.4(c) also requires the Conference of Chief District Judges to establish uniform statewide guidelines for determining parents’ child support obligations and to review the guidelines at least once every four years to assess their continued appropriateness. These guidelines, known as the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines (Guidelines), apply to cases where the parent’s combined income is $300,000 or less. If the parents’ combined income is more than $300,000, then the court must determine the child support payment amount after weighing the factors noted above.

Filing for child support in Raleigh, North Carolina

Calculating The Appropriate Amount

Pursuant to the Guidelines, calculating child support begins with determining which child support worksheet is proper under the given circumstances:

  • Worksheet A – Applies to cases involving sole or primary custody, where one parent has the children for most of the year, and the other parent has the children for less than 123 days during the year
  • Worksheet B – Applies to cases involving joint custody, where each parent has the children for at least 123 nights during the year
  • Worksheet C – Applies to cases involving split custody, where one parent has primary physical custody of at least one child and the other parent has primary physical custody of the other child

Upon determining which worksheet fits their circumstances, each parent must list all of their income. Note that, per the Guidelines, if the court finds a parent is attempting to avoid their child support obligation by voluntarily being unemployed or underemployed, child support may be calculated based on the income that parent could potentially earn. Other information that has bearing on the child support calculation is:

  • Existing support obligations and responsibility for other children
  • Work-related child care expenses
  • Health insurance costs for the children
  • The number of overnight visits that the child spends with each parent
  • Extraordinary expenses, such as those related to special or private elementary or secondary schools to satisfy a child’s educational needs and those related to transporting the child between the parents’ homes

A Dedicated Raleigh Child Support Attorney Is Here to Help

Calculating child support amounts can be complicated, but it is a key to ensuring financial protection for you and your children. So, consult with a child support attorney in Raleigh who understands and can apply the Guidelines.

Answers to your child support questions depend on your particular situation and can significantly impact how your case is resolved. Schedule your free strategy session with one of our Raleigh child support attorneys and allow us to guide you through this difficult process.