The North Carolina Court of Appeals recently affirmed the trial court order in Madar v. Madar, (Dec. 31, 2020), that required both parents to pay costs associated with their child’s mental health treatment in a residential treatment facility in addition to their basic child support obligation pursuant to the Child Support Guidelines. The court held that the Child Support Guidelines give the trial court the discretion to determine when parents should be ordered to pay such ‘extraordinary expenses’ as part of their child support obligation. Because ordering the payment of extraordinary expenses does not constitute a deviation from the Child Support Guidelines, a trial court is not required to make findings of fact to support its decision that the expenses are reasonable and necessary or that the parties have the ability to pay.Continue Reading
Today’s post describes two unrelated but important developments in the area of family law. The first section of the post discusses legislative amendments to Chapter 50B regarding Domestic Violence Protection Orders that became effective December 1, 2019. The second section of the post discusses amendments to the Child Support Guidelines adopted by the Conference of Chief District Court Judges effective March 1, 2020 to bring North Carolina into conformity with federal child support regulations.