Parents who owe child support in North Carolina must pay it as ordered until that order changes. As a general rule, parents should make a good faith effort to keep up with their payments. Doing so shows that there is a true change in circumstance preventing them from paying as opposed to simply not wanting to anymore. It is a good idea to document the change in circumstance before asking for a modification.
If a parent is going through a medical issue, it may be a good idea to keep records of all expenses related to that issue. If a parent loses his or her job, it may be a good idea to keep a termination letter or unemployment records. Those who may get along with their child’s other parent may want to work out an arrangement with that parent first.
Doing so may be easier and less expensive than going to court to resolve the matter. It may also be more effective in the event that the law doesn’t recognize a financial hardship as a change of circumstance allowing a modification to take place. It is important to note that the other parent is under no obligation to agree to a modification, and parents may face legal consequences for failing to make them.
Parents who are struggling to make child support payments may wish to talk with an attorney. Doing so may help a parent learn more about his or her options and how to pursue a child support order modification. An attorney may also help a parent determine what documentation or other supporting evidence may be needed to convince a judge to allow for a modification to take place. In some cases, legal counsel may be helpful during informal child support talks between parents.