Handling Child Support Concerns
In North Carolina, child support is determined using the child support calculator. It determines many factors, including the average monthly gross income each parent, child care expenses, and health insurance costs. A child support attorney can ensure that child support is accurately calculated, request a deviation from the guideline amount, and assist through the modification process.
To schedule an initial consultation regarding child support questions and concerns, contact attorney Martha New Milam of Milam & Idol PLLC in Durham today.
North Carolina Child Support Guidelines
In North Carolina, both parents are required to provide support for their children. This does not, however, mean that each parent will be required to pay an equal amount of money toward the support of his or her child. North Carolina law follows a series of child support guidelines. The guidelines use an income shares model that takes into account the average monthly gross income of both parents. This “average monthly gross income” is more than your salary. It is all of your income — your full and part-time employment, bonuses, commissions and income from investments, real estate and other sources.
For many parents, the child support guidelines set an amount of child support payable or receivable that is appropriate for the needs of the children and is in sync with their ability to pay. However, some parents have children whose financial needs depart from the guideline amounts — either by making the guideline amount insufficient or excessive. In these cases, things become more complex than a simple payment calculation. Such a departure from the child support guidelines is called a deviation.
Attorney Martha New Milam will look at the actual needs and expenses of your children as well as the child support guidelines, to help you decide how to proceed with your child support case. If needed, she can request a deviation from the guideline amount. The court may then calculate child support differently than the guideline amount if it is justified by the facts.
Can Child Support Be Changed?
If there has been a substantial change in the circumstances of your situation, you may be able to obtain a child support modification. For example, if one spouse loses a job due to no fault of her own or if one of the children requires additional money for necessary expenses, or if more than three years have passed since the entry of the most recent child support order, you may need to explore whether it is the appropriate time to request a recalculation of child support.
Ms. Milam can help you address these situations and ensure that the existing child support orders are relevant to your family’s changing circumstances.
Child Support Enforcement
Attorney Martha New Milam represents clients in court proceedings to enforce child support payments. This can be done through contempt proceedings if the paying parent is refusing to honor the child support order. The parent who is refusing to pay may be held criminally responsible and suffer additional civil penalties.