Your Future Is Our Business
Divorce & Child Custody
Robinson and Lauterbach, Attorneys At Law, PLLC, is a comprehensive law firm focused on providing personalized legal services to individuals and families throughout Gaston county. We are dedicated to helping families develop sound parenting agreements, and resolve complex child custody and support disputes. It is our mission to enact a custody arrangement that protects the best interests of your child.
Understand Your Needs In A Divorce
Ending a marriage is a significant life event that requires active preparation. If the decision for a divorce has been made, you are likely questioning, “where do I start?”
Since every marriage is different, your individual needs in the divorce will vary based on your situation. The process for getting a divorce has many layers, which is why before taking any action against your soon-to-be ex, it is advised you meet with a knowledgeable North Carolina divorce attorney to discuss your options.
At Robinson and Lauterbach, Attorneys At Law, PLLC, we put you and your family’s needs first. We provide strong legal representation to individuals and families coping with divorce or child custody matters throughout Gastonia.
Divorce Laws In North Carolina
In North Carolina, divorcing couples must be residents of the state for at least six months, and legally separated for one year before a divorce decree is granted.
The state allows individuals to file for divorce on grounds of fault or no-fault. Designating fault in a divorce is permitted under specific circumstances, including adultery, desertion/abandonment, cruelty or violence, drug or alcohol abuse, incurable insanity and other indignities that render a spouse’s life burdensome and intolerable.
Do's And Don'ts Of The Divorce Process
Going through a divorce causes considerable stress and anxiety. Many important decisions must be made that require a clear focus, which can be extremely difficult given the circumstances. When entering into a divorce, it is essential to consider the following:
- Take account of all marital finances
- Include all assets and property for evaluation
- Put the interests of your children first when negotiating custody arrangements
- Follow all court orders and comply with all deadlines
- Consult with an experienced divorce lawyer
- Violate any court orders
- Hide any assets or property from your spouse
- Make important decisions based on emotions
- Use your children as a bargaining tool
While the above do’s and don’ts provide a basic outline for how you should approach the dissolution of your marriage, the most critical aspect is that you don’t go through it without a qualified divorce lawyer on your side. No matter how amicable your split, the divorce process can present many challenges and requires careful planning and consideration.
Child Custody Laws in NC
Determining child custody arrangements can create heavy tension during a divorce. When a custody agreement cannot be reached through private negotiations, it will be up to the court to decide.
In North Carolina, parents can seek joint or sole physical and/or legal custody of a child. Grandparents may also petition the court for visitation rights, which is also referred to as nonparent visitation rights or third-party visitation rights.
How Will The Court Determine Custody?
The court will act in what they believe is in the best interest of the child. While evaluating child custody cases, the court will consider the current living arrangements of the child, each parent’s relationship with the child, whether there is a history of violence and each parent’s ability to provide a caring, stable home environment.
How Is Child Support Calculated In North Carolina?
The court will determine the amount of child support to order using the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines. These guidelines are set to serve in the best interests of the child, and include important factors that each parent must consider, such as:
- Gross monthly income (all sources) of both parents
- Custody and living arrangements
- Child care expenses
- Health insurance costs for the child
- Medical costs (if applicable)
Do's And Don'ts Of Child Custody And Support
If you have child custody or support concerns, it is critical that you consider the following:
- Show a willingness to cooperate and work with your ex
- Focus on your child’s best interests
- Educate yourself on family laws in North Carolina
- Prepare documentation if unsafe conditions exist
- Consult with a skilled child custody and family law attorney
- Miss scheduled visitation days
- Violate or disobey a court order
- Involve your children in any custody-related disputes
To achieve a successful custody arrangement, your child’s needs must remain at the forefront.
We Know Gaston County
Since our firm’s beginning, it has been our goal to provide the highest standard of legal representation to all of our clients. At Robinson and Lauterbach, Attorneys at Law, PLLC, in Gastonia, North Carolina, our attorneys bring extensive experience to the practice of law. We offer comprehensive legal services for clients involved with various matters, including divorce, child custody cases, estate planning, DWI and traffic violations, expungements and real estate law.