Child support and ED payments questions


#1

I am a single Dad with only one job. Last week I was informed that I may be laid off by the end of this week. I have no idea if/when I would return. I am currently looking for positions elsewhere.

The court is witholding CS from my paycheck weekly. when I get my last paycheck that’s it. No more deducted CS from my pay. Even after one week i will be in arrears and my Ex will surely hold me in contempt (being the person that she is)
what is the procedure for filing for a temporary suspension of CS until I can get back to work again? I know that she will not voluntarily agree to this so the consent form will not work. Form numbers and procedure wopuold be a great help please.

We also have an ED order from the court where I am to pay XX amount to her for 24 months. I will also need to have that suspended as well. I was told by the judge that if I failed to make these payments they would reserve the right come and take my vehicle (which seems counter productive to me finding a job) or other personla property. the vehicle has a loan on it so what would they be able to do with a vehicle that I do not own outright? Seems stupid to me. At any rate do I file an article 56 or 57 motion for this? I was told that one of those is something like a “relief from judgement” request. As far as I can see that is the only recourse I have to keep from being held in contempt, losing my property, etc.

I am trying to do what the court has asked but being laid off I will only get unemployment which is less than 1/2 of my salary and will hardly even allow me to pay my household bills- mortgage, power, etc.

Please help?


#2

Your ex may file a motion for contempt but in order for a court to hold you in contempt she must demonstrate that you are able of complying with the court order and are simply willfully refusing to do so. If she does file such a motion you will have the change to explain your side of the story and prove to the judge that you no longer have an income.
If you know you are losing your job you should file a motion to modify child support based on this substantial change in circumstances. This way you will be able to take a proactive measure to have child support adjusted prior to your ex filing a motion to have you held in contempt. You may file a motion for a change in alimony as well, based on the same circumstances.
I would have to review your current order to determine what exactly the judge ordered with respect to the car.
Based on the facts you present a motion for relief from judgment is not appropriate. That motion is intended for instances where a mistake was made. There is no avenue to change a property distribution, a court order dealing with property cannot be modified.
I suggest that you speak with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your case, and so that he or she may review the order in question.


#3

Erin,
I wish I could hire a GOOD attorney- the last two I had were worthless and bled me dry and did nothing. I am one of the many that falls into the gray area of making too much money right NOW and not enough to be able to afford an attorney.

Last year I was laid off from my job as well. I was hauled into court and the judge held me in contempt even though I was only getting unemployment. they claimed that I had bought a house last year and that I should sell my house (uh huh- they obviously hadn’t seen the market reports for housing at that time). I had proof that I almost lost my home to foreclosure etc. It didn’t matter. I even went into court (pro se) and recited the def. of contempt right from the Nc statutes. They had 0 proof that I was willfully not able to pay, etc. The judge still held me in contempt.

It’s along story, but I cannot afford an attorney at this time and I need to know which form numbers to file these motions and the procedures for doing so. Just the simple abc of the procedures and the form numbers (or where to research this stuff myself). I am asking this so that I can be proactive and stay in compliance with the courts orders as best I can.

As for my current order- it simply states that If I don’t make my ED payments the court reserves the right to take personal property including my vehicle until the debt is settled. I can’t make it any simpler than that. There is no ambiguity in the language as there usually is in legal documents.


#4

BTw, Erin, are you the same Erin that used to work for the public def’s office in Raleigh?


#5

There are self serve centers in many counties that do provide assistance with filing certain motions. Each county has a different set of local rules, and different procedures so that I cannot simply list what forms you will need moving forward. You should visit the website of the Administrative Office of Courts and use the site to pull up specific rules for your county. The site address is : www.nccourts.org.
If the court order allows for your personal property to be taken your car can be sold at a sheriff’s sale with any proceeds (after the loan is paid) going to your spouse.