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Know the Laws: North Carolina

UPDATED August 17, 2016

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Information on filing for, modifying, and enforcing a child support order.

The court process

back to topCan I keep my personal information confidential?

Yes.  Your personal information (such as your address) can be available to the other people involved in the case unless you can prove to the judge that the health, safety, or liberty of a party or child would be unreasonably put at risk if this identifying information is not kept confidential.  The judge can hold a hearing ex parte (without the other party present) when making this decision.  Also, if there is an existing order from another case that says that your identifying the information cannot be disclosed, that could apply to the child support case as well.*

* NCGS § 52C-3-311

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back to topDo I have to pay court fees if I file a child support case?

The person who files for support does not have to pay any filing fees.*  The judge may order the non-custodial parent (the one ordered to pay support) to pay filing fees, your reasonable attorney’s fees, necessary travel fees for your witnesses, etc.** 

* NCGS § 52C-3-312(a)
** NCGS § 52C-3-312(b)

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back to topHow soon after I file can I get support?

The judge can issue a temporary support order after you file your petition while you are awaiting the hearing on child support.*  The date of the hearing may depend on many factors but could take between a few weeks and a few months to be scheduled.

* NCGS § 50-13.5(d)(2)

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back to topWhere does the court proceeding for support take place?

Generally, the court hearing for child support takes place in the county where the child lives or is physically present or in a county where one of the parents live.*  There are some exceptions, so you may want to consult an attorney for more information about your case.  You can find legal referrals on our NC Finding a Lawyer page.

* NCGS § 50-13.5(f)

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