Frequently Asked Questions About North Carolina Child Support
At Tickle Law Office, you will always find a helping hand dealing with your child support case. Attorney Lawrence Tickle (or “Tickle” as he is known) prides himself in helping moms and dads from all walks of life with their children. Tickle can jump into your case in the middle, or he can be there with you from the very beginning. For your convenience, here are some answers to some frequently asked questions:
Q. How is child support determined?
A. There is a formula derived by the Conference of District Court judges that decides the amount. This formula is located in the Child Support Guidelines. Basically, the formula takes both parents’ incomes, adds them together, then looks at a chart for the corresponding number of children.
That number is the basic amount that the District Court judges have decided, which takes each month to raise your children. Then the formula looks at how many days each year the parents have with the children. If one parent has the children for fewer than 123 overnights, worksheet A is used.
If both parents have more than 122 overnights each year, then worksheet B is used. If both parents have split the children up, then worksheet C is used. From that point on, depending on the worksheet used, credits are given, and percentages are applied based on the amount of overnights each year to determine the child support amount. If you are facing an establishment of child support, it is imperative that you have an attorney work with you to know what is happening.
Q. What if I spend more money each month than the child support guidelines say?
A. If you have extraordinary expenses you can get them, but you have to prove that they are necessary for the basic needs and well-being of the minor child, and they are not luxuries or done to convenience of the parent.
Q. What if I don’t pay my child support?
A. A show cause may be issued, and you may be thrown in jail if you cannot produce some money determined by the judge.
Q. How can I get child support from the other parent?
A. You can hire an attorney and set it up as part of your custody case, or you can go to the county DSS and apply for child support. The amount of child support will be based on how much custody each parent gets, and it does not matter if the order for custody has not been entered; for determining the child support, court will look at the actual overnights over the relevant time frame.
Q. What if I think I’m not the father?
A. You have a limited time of one year from the time you have reason to believe you were defrauded to file a motion for a paternity test. After that year, you can never contest paternity again. This is why it is important to get a paternity test done as soon as possible.
Q. What if I want to get child support from before I filed?
A. Child support will automatically relate back to the date of filing, but you can get child support for prior expenses before the date of filing. To do this, however, you will need to prove the expenses — each and every dollar.