Suppose that you are recently separated or divorced and have minor children. Should you have a life insurance policy in place to ensure sufficient resources are available to provide for your children if you suddenly die? What factors must you consider before taking out a life insurance policy to benefit your children? Should you enter into any agreement with your former spouse to carry this insurance? The answer to all of these questions is probably no. Continue reading →
In Chica v. Chica, the North Carolina Court of Appeals, in an unpublished opinion, reviewed Plaintiff Father’s appeal of the trial court’s December 6, 2018 Order finding him in civil contempt and establishing purge conditions. Plaintiff Father also appealed the trial court’s April 2019 Order denying, in part, Plaintiff’s Motion for a New Trial related to the December 6, 2018 Order.
Chica v Chica, COA19-856 (N.C. Ct. App. 2020)
- Facts: Plaintiff Father and Defendant Mother were married on or about July 11, 1998. Two children were born of the marriage, and the parties separated in December 2014. The parties reached and the court entered a Consent Order for Child Support and Child Custody. The Consent Order’s relevant sections involve joint legal custody and decision-making, school assignment, medical and dental expenses, and the children’s private school.
In Price v. Boccardy, the North Carolina Court of Appeals, in an unpublished opinion, reviewed Defendant’s appeal from the trial court’s order denying Defendant’s Rule 60(b) motion to set aside a final custody order.
Price v. Boccardy, COA20-127 (N.C. App 2020).
Facts: Plaintiff and Defendant were the parents of a minor child, three-year-old A.B. Plaintiff Mother filed a verified complaint seeking custody, claiming that the minor child was at substantial risk for bodily injury and sexual abuse. Plaintiff received an ex parte order awarding her temporary legal and physical custody. Defendant filed an answer denying Plaintiff’s allegations and a counterclaim seeking temporary and permanent legal and physical custody. The trial court’s March 7, 2018 order included that the ex parte order would remain in effect, with Defendant Father receiving at least one supervised visitation per week until the permanent hearing was scheduled. Continue reading →
Ward v. Halprin, ___ N.C. App. ____.
Child custody has the potential to be heavily contested. In some cases, one parent wants to be able to have sole decision-making authority. In North Carolina, the ability to make these decisions is termed “legal custody.” Courts often grant parents joint legal custody. This means that either parent can make major life decisions regarding their children (usually education, religion, and non-emergency healthcare), often requiring the parents to make a good faith attempt at resolving issues in the decision-making process and providing legal recourse should they not resolve. However, the court can grant sole legal custody in some circumstances. Below is a case that did just that. Continue reading →
In the Matter of R.D.B., A Minor Child (No. COA19-1019)
Many children in Guilford County have guardians appointed by the court for a variety of reasons. A child who no longer has any living biological parents is a common example of when a court will appoint an adult to step in and make decisions on behalf of the minor child. In the Matter of R.D.B. addresses how petitioners Ruby and Caleb Harkness—maternal grandparents of the minor child—appealed from the order appointing Raymond Mann to serve as the guardian of the minor child R.D.B. (“Robert”). Continue reading →
In Reece v. Holt, the North Carolina Court of Appeals, in an unpublished opinion, reviewed N.C.G.S. Chapter 50 for child custody and subject matter jurisdiction. Plaintiff Father claimed that an ex parte order established a “presumption” supporting a claim for domestic violence under N.C.G.S. § 50B. This article will focus on the domestic violence action only. Continue reading →
The recent rollouts of the COVID-19 vaccines have revealed differences of opinion as to who will and who will not take the vaccine. When you are separated or divorced, who decides for the children? Continue reading →
Koufman v. Koufman, 330 N.C. 93, 408 S.E.2d 729 (NC 1991)
Child support orders are modifiable in North Carolina when there is a substantial change in circumstances. But what happens when your child moves to a school away from home, such as a boarding school or preparatory academy? These institutions have dormitories where students live for most of the school year. They get breaks for holidays and summer. Tuition covers most of their living expenses. Below we discuss how the Court analyzed the expenses. Continue reading →
Bishop v. Bishop, ____ N.C. App. _____ (Dec. 2020)
Child support in North Carolina is typically determined by a formula set out by the legislature and applied in child support guidelines and their worksheets. However, it was known for some income levels that the formula no longer becomes equitable. Too low or too high of income both throw a wrench into the calculus. For higher income families, the court may forgo the use of the guidelines and make findings on the reasonable needs of the child when compared to a parent’s ability to pay; meaning it should account for their assets, debts, and lifestyle. Continue reading →