Custody and Support in North Carolina
Alimony, Child Custody and Child Support in North Carolina
Divorce is rarely an easy process and it is made even more complicated when children are involved. No one wants to choose how to split their time with their children but when a marriage breaks down, sometimes this is necessary so both parents can remain involved in their children’s lives. Alimony, child custody and child support arrangements need to be discussed and resolved between parents, whether in court or by mutual agreement, and often the easiest and most efficient way to handle this is to work with experienced family law attorneys to ensure that any agreements reached are legal and binding on both parties. Considerations about custodial schedules that take into account both parties’ work schedules, children’s extracurricular activities and educational needs and holidays, family vacations and travel are important.
In many cases, there are litigation-free options that avoid long, expensive legal battles and messy, emotional courtroom scenes, which is beneficial for both parents and children. Mediation and settlement conferences often work well when both parents are willing to collaborate and set aside their differences in the interest of their children. In these situations, an attorney experienced in family law matters can help you set up binding contractual agreements or consent orders for alimony, child custody and child support. It is important for both parents to be involved in creating equitable child custody and support agreements. Our lawyers and staff at Parker Bryan Family Law can help ensure that you are in compliance with North Carolina’s law and child support guidelines.
If mediation is unsuccessful, the lawyers and staff at Parker Bryan Family Law can guide you knowledgeably through the litigation process and will be your fierce advocate.
North Carolina offers two general choices for formal custody or support agreements—contractual agreements and consent orders. A contractual agreement is a contract between both parties, but these contracts are not always binding in court and cannot be enforced by police or legal entities. For example, if one party chooses to file a lawsuit for child custody or child support, the contract can be dismissed or ignored altogether by a state judge under certain circumstances.
In contrast, a consent order is a court-ordered agreement that cannot be changed without petitioning a judge to review any substantial changes in circumstance (for example, a change in living arrangements). Anyone who violates a consent order for child custody or support can be found in contempt of court, and incarcerated.
Before you address the issues of child custody or support with your spouse, know your options. Sit down and discuss the circumstances of your divorce, as well as any arrangements you have in mind for your children with a lawyer.
The resolution of claims for child custody and support can be handled efficiently by an experienced family lawyer and it is up to you to choose a lawyer that will be the best fit for you. Call Us. We can help.