Arlington, TX asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for North Carolina

Q: Can the custodial parent take away visitation if you’re behind on child support?

Income decreased due to covid. Still paying monthly but struggling to pay the full amount. Need my income legally re evaluated. But she won’t let me see my child.

2 Lawyer Answers
Mr. Albert Loch Saslow
Mr. Albert Loch Saslow
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Greensboro, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: No, visitation and the payment of child support are completely independent of one another. Failure to pay support is not a valid reason to withhold visitation. If visitation is being denied, you may have to file a motion for contempt for her violation of the custody order.

Amanda Bowden Houser
Amanda Bowden Houser
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Jacksonville, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: Can she do it - yes, as you are obviously experiencing. Is it legal or appropriate - no. Failure to pay child support is not grounds to withhold visitation. If it goes to court she will likely not fair well. However, you will most likely need an attorney to force her to cooperate with the visitation and since you are already struggling financially this may be an issue. If she is withholding visitation to punish you solely because you are unable to pay the full child support amount and without any other legitimate reason, then what she is really doing more than anything else is hurting the child and making herself look like a parent who should not have custody of a child. You can also have an attorney evaluate and lower your child support amount. Best of luck.

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