Can I Terminate my Parental Rights to Avoid Paying Child Support?

Note: The DearEsq free 'ask a lawyer' site is offered as a free informational service to the public and is not intended as legal advice. Laws vary from state-to-state, and in addition every situation is unique, and relevant facts may not be known. The answer to the question posed below may not apply to in your state or to your situation. For legal advice in your state and your situation you should consult with an attorney in your state who is familiar with the rules and laws in your state.

“My question is: can I sign over my paternal rights to avoid paying child support? If my child lives in North Carolina and I live in New York, how would the amount that I am responsible to pay be determined?”

Question: You can’t just sign over your rights in some informal way. If you file a Petition for termination of parental rights, the Court in North Carolina will determine whether by clear and convincing evidence termination of your rights is best for your child. Some of the grounds are: Abuse, neglect, child in foster care for more than a year, DSS involvement, failure to support (and termination in the child’s best interests), incapacity of the parent, etc. If the Court does not terminate your rights, support will likely be by the guidelines of the state where the request to determine support was filed.