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  1. Can a custody order be modified later?

    Yes, but only if there has been a substantial change of circumstances affecting the child since the prior order was entered. Courts desire stability for the child. Generally, the stability of a custody order promotes the stability of the child. While custody orders can be modified, the parent seeking to...
  2. Is child support affected by the custody schedule?

    Yes. Child support is usually determined by the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines. The factors that determine child support are: the gross income of the parents; work-related childcare expenses; health insurance premiums for the child; other extraordinary expenses; and the number of nights that each parent has the child. Generally,...
  3. What is “joint custody” in North Carolina?

    This depends. North Carolina recognizes two types of custody – physical custody and legal custody. Often, parents assume that joint custody means they will share the child equally and this is not necessarily true. Legal custody refers to which parent will make the major decisions that affect the child such...
  4. Does the child’s preference matter?

    The child’s preference is certainly a consideration but it is not a controlling factor. If the child is of suitable age and maturity to express his or preference (there is no established age in North Carolina law when a child is allowed to state a preference), a judge will consider...
  5. How will custody be decided?

    As with most issues, the best way to resolve custody is by agreement of the parties. If you and the other parent agree on the terms for custody, the court can adopt your agreement and make it a court order so that it is easier to enforce. If you cannot...

Call the Law Office of John P. Fernandez if you have questions or need legal representation in a family law matter. John Fernandez is licensed to practice law in North Carolina. The laws of North Carolina may differ from other states and no information contained herein should be considered legal advice.

About John Fernandez

John P. Fernandez | Child Custody and Divorce Lawyer | Raleigh, NCAttorney John Fernandez works with North Carolina individuals and families who need advice or representation in estate planning and administration matters. John provides an in-depth analysis of each client’s needs and works toward reducing estate taxes, avoiding probate and ensuring that health care decisions are handled appropriately. John helps individuals with modest and large estates achieve their goals.


John P. Fernandez
Attorney at Law
9555 US Highway 15-501 North
Chapel Hill, NC 27517
(919) 601-5028

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