One Courthouse Square
P.O. Box 119
Smithfield, NC 27577
5842 Hwy 42 West
Garner, NC 27529
Conflicts over child support can quickly turn a simple divorce into a complicated legal proceeding. Since 1962, our lawyers have represented hundreds of clients in family law - we know firsthand the challenges clients face to protect their rights.
At Mast, Mast, Johnson, Wells & Trimyer P.A., we tailor our legal approach to our clients' unique needs. We offer convenient appointments at our law offices located in Garner and Smithfield. Contact us today to meet with one of our experienced attorneys.
For more than four decades, our family law attorneys have represented clients in straightforward and complex divorce proceedings. We have an in-depth understanding of the child support laws and regulations in North Carolina.
Parents are legally required to pay child support until their child is 18-years old or graduates from high school. Generally, you cannot voluntarily give up your rights to the child to avoid paying child support. The only ways a parent's obligation to pay child support may end early is if a "Termination of Parental Rights Order" is entered in the Juvenile Court, or once an "Adoption" is finalized.
The amount each parent pays is calculated by Child Support Guidelines, according to the income-level of each parent. As your attorneys, we can negotiate with the other party and/or court to adjust the amount you pay, based on the number of days the child lives with you. Daycare expenses and health care benefits can also affect the amount each party pays. You may visit the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines Website at https://nddhacts01.dhhs.state.nc.us/home.jsp?TargetScreen=WorkSheet.jsp. There you can insert the gross income, the children's portion of medical insurance, day care costs, etc. to give you an idea of what a parent's obligation may be.
In the past we have challenged the basis of the child support guidelines, taking the matter through the appellate courts of North Carolina (N.C. Court of Appeals and N.C. Supreme Court), and filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the United States Supreme Court. in an attempt to have the highest court of the land review North Carolina's laws and modify them.
Currently, we are seeking to have a potential Child Support Class Action certified against the State of North Carolina, alleging that several Counties, including Johnston, Wayne, Durham, Alamance, and Hoke Counties, as well as others throughout the State of NC. The complaint allegeds that the various Defendants illegally collected child support from parents who were not legally responsible to pay any support. It is alleged that numerous fathers and mothers throughout the state (and in some cases outside North Carolina) whose parental rights had been previously terminated were forced to continue to pay child support. In one case, a biological mother whose parental rights were secretly taken from her was forced to pay and her wages/tax returns were garnished for over five (5) years, in the amount of Twenty-Thousand Dollars ($20,000.00), none of which was owed.
Both parents are legally responsible to pay child support. The amount of child support may be contained in a seperation agreement, a divorce judgment, or a child support order. In the event a party fails to comply and make child support paymetns, they may be subject to harsh penalties with the court, such as being held in contempt of court (possible jail time), and may have to pay attorney fees to the prevailing party.
We have extensive experience working with clients on either side of an enforcement issue. Whether you need a defense attorney to protect or you want help enforcing the terms of your seperation agrement, divorce judgment or child support order, we are ready to help you.
If your financial situation recently changed, our lawyers can help seek a modification of your child support order by filing a Motion to Modify Child Support. We have a strong background negotiating with the court to adjust child support for a variety of factors, such as:
The court orders can be modified after three years when a substantial change has occurred.
If you are concerned about an arrears debt or future payments that you might not be able to make, you need an experienced attorney. Call us at (800) 280-6676 or e-mail us to schedule a flexible appointment. Our lawyers offer convenient appointment at our law offices.