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Child Support Attorney in Carrington, North Dakota

Child support is a vital aspect of family law. In cases of separation or divorce involving children, both parents have an ongoing financial obligation to their child.

This commitment doesn't end with the parents' relationship; it continues until the child reaches the age of majority or completes high school, barring any certain special circumstances.

Figuring out how child support works can be confusing, but with the right guidance, you will be able to understand your rights and responsibilities to navigate child support confidently.  

Configuring Child Support

When determining child support in our state, several factors come into play. The court takes into account these circumstances:  

  • Parents' incomes: The state of North Dakota uses the income of both parents to calculate child support in joint residential responsibility cases. However, in cases of primary residential responsibility, only one parent's income (the parent whom the children do not reside with) is considered.

  • Deductions: Certain deductions are taken into account when determining child support. These can include taxes, health care premiums, medical care costs, union dues, occupational license fees, retirement contributions, and employment costs. 

  • Number of children: The number of children involved plays a significant role in the calculation of child support. More children generally mean higher child support payments. 

  • Custody arrangement: The amount of time each parent spends with the children can also affect the child support calculation. A parent who spends more time with the children may receive more in child support. 

  • Voluntary underemployment or unemployment: In some cases, the court may impute additional income to a parent who is voluntarily underemployed or unemployed, affecting the child support amount. 

Enforcing child support orders is crucial to ensure that children receive the financial support they're entitled to. If you're facing difficulties receiving child support payments, our team can assist you in navigating the legal system and taking appropriate action to enforce the order. 

Our firm has extensive experience in child support enforcement cases. We've worked diligently to ensure that noncustodial parents fulfill their financial obligations. We understand that enforcement can sometimes be challenging, but we're committed to standing with you every step of the way. 

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Modifying Child Support Orders

Life can be unpredictable, and circumstances can change. When these changes significantly impact your financial situation or the needs of your child, it may be necessary to modify an existing child support order. Here's what you need to know about modifying child support orders in North Dakota: 

  • How It Works: To modify a child support order, you'll need to provide details about your case and your contact information. We'll then be able to reach out to you, discuss your circumstances, and plan the best course of action. 

  • Justification for Modification: A modification review can be requested if there has been a significant change in circumstances that was not anticipated when the original order was issued. This could include things like the loss of a job, relocation to another country, or the birth of a new child. 

  • Timing for Modification: If the child support order was issued or modified less than one year ago, a change can only be justified by an unforeseen material change in circumstances. After one year, the standard for review is less stringent, making it easier to request a modification. 

How Is Child Support Calculated in North Dakota? 

In North Dakota, child support is calculated based on the parents' incomes, the number of children involved, and the custody arrangement. The state uses a child support calculator that follows the child support guidelines to estimate the support obligation. 

What Expenses Are Included in Child Support in North Dakota?

Apart from the amount determined by the guidelines, parents in North Dakota are also responsible for covering the child's medical insurance if reasonable. Additional costs such as childcare, educational expenses, and other necessary expenses may also be added to the child support obligation. 

Can Child Support Be Adjusted in North Dakota?

Yes, child support can be adjusted in North Dakota. As mentioned before, a court can modify the support amount if it is in the child's best interests or if there are special circumstances. Changes in income, custody arrangements, or other significant changes may warrant a modification. 

How Long Does Child Support Last in North Dakota?

Typically, child support payments continue until the child's 18th birthday or until they graduate from high school. However, with a judge's approval, child support can be extended to cover exceptional medical or physical needs. 

What Are the Consequences if a Parent Does Not Pay Child Support in North Dakota?

In North Dakota, when child support payments fall two months behind or exceed $2,000, there are measures in place to ensure compliance. Failure to meet these obligations may lead to enforcement actions, potentially resulting in the suspension of various licenses and privileges, including: 

  • Driver's License 

  • Vehicle Registration 

  • Hunting and Fishing Licenses 

  • Professional and Occupational Licenses 

These are some of the actions Child Support Enforcment can take when an obligation is not met. If you need assistance with enforcing an obligation or find yourself having fallen behind on your obligation, the attorneys at Brinster Law, P.C. can help you navigate through the court process.

Attorneys in Central North Dakota to assist With Child Support

At Brinster Law, P.C., we understand the intricacies of child support laws in North Dakota. We're committed to providing compassionate and knowledgeable legal representation to our clients. Our experienced attorneys, Kara Brinster, and Matthew Zimney have the resources to guide you through every step of the child support process, protecting the best interests of your children.