What is the Process to Modify a Child Support Order in North Carolina?

Fam-1024x1024What is the Process to Modify a Child Support Order in North Carolina?

Both parents are required to provide for their children. Generally, when parents divorce, a child resides primarily with one parent and has regular visits with the other parent. The non-custodial parent typically pays child support, which is money provided for their portion of the care of the child. Once a parent is required by court order to pay child support, the only way to change it is through child support modification.


When Can a Parent Ask for Modification of Child Support?

As with any legal matter, a change to child support must be done through proper channels. You cannot request a change in child support unless there is a reason to do so. By law, you may request the court to review a child support order after three years or when there is a substantial change in circumstances.

A substantial change in circumstance includes such things as a change in employment or salary or when there are substantial health changes in a parent, among other things. A substantial change is based on a 15% difference between the existing child support order and the amount of support that would be calculated using current income and guidelines.


Managing member Matt Arnold answers the question, “What is the Process to Modify a Child Support Order in North Carolina?”


Steps to Modify a Child Support Order

There are several steps to modifying a child support order. The first step is to file a Motion and Notice of Hearing for Modification of Child Support Order. You must complete the form, including information about the current support order and the reason for the request for modification. You must ensure that the form is notarized and pay the current filing fee.


After a modification request is submitted, a judge will schedule a hearing. The hearing provides time in front of the judge for both parents to present documentation and information. The hearing date will depend on the current court docket load. You should prepare for the hearing by gathering the evidence you need to support your request. At the hearing, the judge will hear your case and make a determination. Keep in mind that not all modification requests are granted.


Can I Modify Child Support Without An Attorney?

The legal process allows a parent to request a modification and attend the hearing without assistance from an attorney. While the process itself is not difficult, it is often in your best interest to seek guidance from a knowledgeable attorney. A consultation with an attorney will help answer your questions. Your lawyer will evaluate your situation and give you guidance on whether you can go forward with a modification request.


An experienced attorney understands the criteria for modification of court-ordered child support and will help you gather the documentation and evidence you need as you prepare for your hearing. If the other parent has requested a modification, you will also want to get ready for the upcoming hearing with the assistance of a qualified attorney. If you need to make a change to your child support order, call us at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, at (740) 370-2828 to schedule a consultation.








The family law practice group at Arnold & Smith, PLLC includes four Board-Certified Family Law specialists and one Child Welfare Law specialist, as well as several attorneys with many years of family law experience that are committed to providing a powerful voice to individuals facing the often-tumultuous issues in this area of law. The range of issues our family law clients may be facing include pre- and post-nuptial agreements; separation agreements; post-separation support; child support (both temporary and permanent); absolute divorce; divorce from bed and board; military divorce; equitable distribution of assets; child custody (both temporary and permanent); retirement benefits and divorce; alimony and spousal support; adoption; and emancipation. Because this area of the law is usually emotionally charged and complicated, the family law attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC act with the utmost dedication to ensure that each client understands his or her options, and then act to achieve the best result possible for that client’s particular situation.





Image Credit



See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

Arnold & Smith, PLLC – YouTube


See Our Related Blog Posts:

When Does Child Support End?


What Can I Do if My Former Spouse Stops Paying Child Support?

Contact Information