Legal Question in Family Law in North Carolina

Father Seeking Visitation

I am an out of state parent who has been paying child support for my 15 year old daughter and have never allowed visitation with this child. The mother moves around a lot and I have found it impossible to track this woman down. Four years ago while my daughter was living with her grandmother, the grandmother and I came to an agreement of visitation before the court and the County Attorney. This agreement was never honored. I recently received a notice from the State of North Carolina stating that they intend to increase my support amount. I don't feel that this is fair since I do not have visitation. It's my right to file a motion with the court if I don't agree with the increase. My questions are will the mother be required to appear in court. If I don't have an address for her when I file this motion, can I still file it? If the mother doesn't show up for court, what do I do then because it is my belief that the mother doesn’t want to appear in court for some reason. I would like to have her served and challenge her custody of my daughter at this time. I have tried in the past to have this done but could never get a valid address for her to file the paperwork.

Asked on 12/21/04, 11:23 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Fred Kaufman Fredrick S. Kaufman, Esquire
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Re: Father Seeking Visitation

Q: CHALLANGING AN INCREASE IN CHILD SUPPORT WHEN MOTHER VIOLATES VISITATION AGREEMENT.

These matters are unrelated. Your obligation to pay child support is independent of any custody rights you may have. You may challange the Division of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE) by following the procedures outlined on their correspondence to you. Be mindful of deadlines to file appeals. They are strictly enforced.

Mother's whereabouts are obviously known to DCSE if they are sending her your money. They will not divulge this information to you without a Court Order however. If you appeal the DCSE's support calculations they will have to subpoena mother to Court to have testimony given and that's where you can inquire as to her address. Once she can be served you can bring custody and visitation motions against her.

As with any action in court, you are well advised to hire competent counsel.

Good luck.

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Answered on 12/21/04, 11:50 am

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