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North Dakota Child Custody & North Dakota Child Support

UPDATED: February 27, 2020

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North Dakota courts, like family courts in all states, strongly encourage parents to work together on agreeing to the details of raising their children after a divorce because, in the long run, these agreements tend to reflect the best interests of the children. If the parents cannot come to such an agreement, the court will get involved, and decide issues of child custody, visitation, and child support with the best interests of the children in mind. The following are the laws governing North Dakota child custody and support.


North Dakota Child Custody:

North Dakota courts determine all custody issues in terms of the best interests of the children. The court will consider all relevant facts and give the father and mother the same consideration regardless of the child’s sex or age. As part of this determination, the court will consider:

  1. The child’s wishes (if s/he is of sufficient age and capacity to form an intelligent preference),
  2. The results of any investigation (upon showing of good cause) into the care and welfare of the parties’ minor children, 
  3. The testimony of any person or expert produced by any party or the court itself who can testify as to what is best for the physical, mental, moral, and spiritual well-being of the child, 
  4. The occurrence of any family violence, and
  5. Mental and physical fitness of the parents.

North Dakota Child Support:

Child support in North Dakota is determined in accordance with statutory guidelines that include many factors, such as:

  • Monetary support provided for other family members
  • Debts arising during the marriage for the child’s benefit
  • Imputed income to a party who is voluntarily unemployed for the child’s benefit
  • Court-ordered payments for health care, education, etc for the child’s benefit
  • Children’s independent financial resources, if any
  • Education, training, and/or career opportunities of the parties and/or ability to pursue those things
  • A written agreement between the parties including the amount of child support, if one exists, and 
  • All earnings, income, and resources of both parents, with earnings being the net amount after taxes and social security.

A lawyer can help you sort through your rights and responsibilities when it comes to raising your children after a divorce, and can also serve as your advocate and/or counsel when negotiating a parenting agreement. You can find a lawyer at:

North Dakota Divorce/Child Support/Child Custody Lawyers:

Find an experienced North Dakota Divorce Attorney at
Find an experienced Child Support Lawyer or Custody Lawyer at
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