Most child support orders in North Dakota are based upon the financial situation and income of the payor spouse. Contrary to the expectation of many parents, the court's order for child support is not immutable. If the financial conditions of the payor spouse change, the terms of the child support may also change.
It can be a struggle to keep up with child support payments under the best of times. After a job loss or another setback, it can be near impossible. Once a parent falls behind, the unpaid balance accumulates interest at a rapid rate, and it can turn into serious financial and legal trouble. Parents in this situation need help with a child support modification.
When a couple has a child in North Dakota and divorces, there will be a child support order. In general, the noncustodial parent will pay support to the custodial parent so the child can be properly cared for. The amount in the order will be based on the state's child support guidelines. Earnings are critical when determining how much the support order will be. There are other factors that will be considered in addition to income. Many people might be under the impression that once the order is made, it cannot be changed. That, however, is not the case. A modification is possible if the circumstances warrant it.
North Dakotans understand that having children carries with it many responsibilities. These responsibilities do not simply end when the couple's marriage ends and they divorce. The transition from a family unit to one in which the parties are living separately with the child residing with one and visiting the other based on a schedule is a difficult one. Making it work can be complicated and part of that is making certain that the best interests of the child are served.
When there is a child support order in North Dakota, many parents will believe that the payments will continue until the child reaches what is known as "majority." However, that is not always the case. The child support guidelines allow for the payments to continue beyond age 18 - when the child has reached majority - if there are certain conditions in place. Even parents who have no negative perception about paying for a child's financial needs will look forward to the day when they are no longer required to do so. It is imperative to know when the payments can be extended beyond the age of majority.
In North Dakota, as in other jurisdictions around the country, there is an obligation on parents to support their children, both emotionally and financially, regardless of whether they are married to one another. This means financial obligations continue even after the couple gets a divorce from one another. There are specific factors that are included in the calculation for child support payments, but the question that might be coming to many parents minds during the summer months is: who pays for summer camp?
A divorce can be full of issues for North Dakota residents. From property division to child custody, many divorces can involve complex and contentious disputes. Child support can be a tricky issue because this involves a financial commitment that could potentially last for years after the divorce is finalized.
North Dakotans who are considering a divorce often want to know if an order directing the payment of child support can be changed or modified. The answer is "sometimes," depending upon individual circumstances. The family law system in North Dakota is predicated, in part, on the understanding that life changes can occur suddenly and drastically. An order for child support can seem reasonable when it was initially signed by the court, but a few years later, the same order might be rendered unreasonable by illness, job loss or other major life changes.
Child support is often considered one of the most important issues in a divorce proceeding. But, many women in North Dakota who never married are raising children by themselves. What about these single mothers who were never married to the child's father? Do they have a right to seek child support from the child's biological father?
North Dakota's proximity to Canada may tempt those owing child support in the state to cross the border in the hopes of avoiding payment. The recent arrest of a United States citizen who had lived in Calgary for 20 years and failed to pay $560,000 in child support may serve as an important object lesson for anyone considering moving to Canada to escape making these payments.