How does North Carolina calculate child support?

On Behalf of | Feb 17, 2020 | Family Law |

North Carolina requires both parents to support a child financially, whether they divorce or have not married. The monthly child support payments depend on the state’s financial guidelines and the couple’s parenting and economic situation.

Learn more about how the state calculates child support payments for minors.

Schedule of basic support obligations

The chart linked above compares the combined monthly gross income of the parents to the number of children to arrive at a basic monthly support amount. For example, when parents earn less than $1,100 a month, the non-custodial parent will typically pay $50 a month in support. When parents earn $2,000 a month in combined gross income, the monthly support amount rises to $372. The state has derived this schedule from the income shares model, which strives to provide the child with the same portion of parental income he or she would receive in an intact nuclear family.

If one parent does not work, the court may use imputed income to determine the child support obligation. This figure is an estimation based on the person’s education, skills, work history and earning potential.

Adjustments for custody and expenses

The court uses a different worksheet to calculate support depending on whether parents have shared custody or 50/50 split custody or whether one parent has sole custody. Other factors that the judge considers when determining a final child support amount include:

  • The number of children
  • Whether either parent has children and/or child support obligations from another relationship
  • Child care costs
  • Medical insurance costs
  • Education costs
  • Number of overnights spent with each parent each month

If you plan to file for divorce, you can ask the judge to determine custody and child support as part of your divorce agreement. Ideally, you and the other parent can agree on custody. When consensus is impossible, however, the state will determine a fair arrangement depending on your family’s unique circumstances.

Get immediate help with your child support case

At Frasier & Griffin, PLLC, we help our clients with their child support cases. Contact our Durham or Raleigh office now to schedule your free consultation with a lawyer.