Many families in North Carolina struggle to get by because the noncustodial parents refuse to pay child support or are paying less than the required amount. If you have been a victim of this experience, you should rest assured that you can legally enforce the other partner to support your child. Read on to find out how you can do this.
How child support works in North Carolina
In North Carolina, child support is based on two main factors: where the child stays and the other parent’s contribution to the child’s maintenance. The parent that stays or spends the most time with the child is the custodial parent, and the other parent must contribute to the upkeep of his or her child by paying child support. The court assumes that the custodial parent contributes directly in many ways while staying with the child.
It is important to note that child custody and support are completely independent of each other. For instance, if the court rules that you are the custodial parent, the noncustodial parent must pay child support whether he or she is allowed visitations.
Enforcing child support
If your ex-partner is reluctant to pay child support, the court will hold him or her in contempt and force him or her to make the required payments through the North Carolina Child Support Enforcement (CSE) program. CSE acts by:
- Seizing the delinquent parent’s bank accounts
- Taking legal action against the nonpaying parent that could lead to a jail term
- Revoking the noncustodial parent’s licenses, including his or her professional, business, drivers and recreational licenses
- Denying the parent who isn’t paying child support his or her unemployment and disability benefits
- Seizing the delinquent individual’s tax refunds
- Putting a lien on the nonpayer’s property, including his or her personal items.
The law requires the noncustodial parent to make contributions until the child turns 18, or he or she graduates high school, whichever comes first. The amount payable is calculated by considering many factors, including the incomes of both parents, the child’s needs, et cetera.
North Carolina state laws are quite serious about child support payments and collections. So if your child’s other parent misbehaves by refusing to pay on time, or at all, you could consult with an attorney to figure out your best approach towards the matter.