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How does North Carolina determine child support?

On Behalf of | Jul 18, 2021 | blog, Family Law |

If you have ended your relationship and share children with your former spouse, both parents must continue to support the children financially. In North Carolina, legal guidelines aim to maintain the child’s standard of living in both households after the divorce.

Review the basics of the state’s child support formula to prepare for divorce in North Carolina.

The child support process

Parents can attempt to agree on child support outside of court or seek mediation services. If they succeed, they can submit their agreement to the judge for approval. Otherwise, they can ask the court to issue a child support judgment based on complete financial disclosure by both parents.

When the judge signs the child support agreement, both parents must legally abide by its terms. Usually, the court deducts the monthly amount from the wages of the parent paying support and distributes it to the parent receiving support.

Factors in child support calculations

The child support formula inputs these considerations:

  • The cost of child care during hours when parents work
  • The cost of schooling
  • The cost of health care for the child
  • The parenting time schedule whether they will have sole or joint custody
  • Each parent’s income

When one parent has primary custody, the other parent usually pays support. When parents share custody, support varies depending on the family’s specific financial situation.

Either parent can request a change in the North Carolina child support order if life circumstances change. Examples include changes in income, welcoming a new household member, moving to a higher cost of living area or remarrying.