Occasionally, we are asked the question, “Do I still have to pay child support if I’m in in jail?” The answer to this question is not always simple. The purpose of this blog is to discuss a parent’s obligation to pay child support pursuant to a court order when that parent has been incarcerated.
Like all of our blogs, this blog is intended for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice and counsel of a licensed attorney.
What Does NC Law Say?
North Carolina General Statutes § 50-13.10 states that a child support payment is not considered to be past due and that no arrearages accrue if the party who has to pay child support is incarcerated, is not on work release, and has no resources with which to make the child support payment. What this means is that even if a supporting parent has been incarcerated, they must be able to show proof that they do not have the financial means to provide timely child support payments during their incarceration.
Contempt for Failure to Pay Child Support
If a supporting parent has failed to pay child support for a prolonged period of time and the court is convinced of their failure to pay child support, the supporting parent could be found to be in contempt. If found to be in contempt, the supporting parent could be incarcerated for their failure to pay child support. If a supporting parent is incarcerated for their failure to pay support, they may want to seek a child support modification action in family court to review their support obligation.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime in North Carolina or South Carolina and you are in need of a criminal defense attorney, contact us to discuss your options.