It is a sad fact that non-custodial parents fail to pay their court-ordered child support, which in turn places a huge financial burden on children and their custodial parents. A lot of people get frustrated with the system and give up rather than fight. Federal and state legislatures have enacted strict policies aimed directly at enforcing child support. These policies along with a nationwide crackdown on “deadbeat” parents, has made it more difficult for people to hide from their financial obligations to their kids.
Establishing Child Support
The amount of support that may be ordered by a court can vary from state to state, as these state laws govern how child support is calculated. Most states rely on a specific formula that considers various factors, such as parents’ incomes and time spent with each child. An experienced family law attorney will know how to file a request for child support on your behalf, and get the maximum amount needed to properly care for the children involved.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Child Support Enforcement website has a lot of useful information about child support and an OCSS search tool that provides contact information for offices in all 50 states.
Enforcing Child Support
Once established by a court of law, a child support order must be obeyed. If you aren’t receiving court-ordered child support payments, then contacting an experienced attorney is your best option. Not only will your attorney have the expertise needed to navigate the family court system, but they will have the experience needed to get the money your children are entitled to and deserve. Did you know, parents that fail to pay child support may be subject to severe penalties? These penalties include:
- Wage Deductions – child support is taken directly out of the non-custodial parent’s wages.
- Federal Income Tax Intercepts – the state can intercept a large tax refund to cover late or missing child support payments.
- License Suspensions and Revocations – a driver’s license and professional license(s) may be revoked.
- Passport Restrictions.
- Contempt of Court – this is a court order that may result in a fine or jail time.
Federal Prosecution of Deadbeat Parents
Some deadbeat parent will go to great lengths to avoid paying their court ordered child support. The U.S. Office of the Inspector General (OIG) can intervene in child-support cases where:
- the non-custodial parent lives in a state other than where the child lives
- refuses to pay child support for over one year
- where the amount owing is more than $5000, or
- where the non-custodial parent travels to another state or country to avoid paying child support.
The punishment includes fines and up to six months in prison (or both) for a first offense. For a second offense, or where child support hasn’t been paid for two years, or the support owed is more than $10,000, the punishment is a fine of up to $250,000 or two years in prison, or both.
Contact Jones Brown PLLC.
If you’re facing a situation where you need a family law attorney, you need a lawyer who understands not only the legal complexities of the issues, but also understands the emotions and personal feelings of everyone involved.
Our attorneys at Jones Brown will take the time to get to know you, who you are, and the events that led you to our law office. We feel it’s hard to represent your interests during this stressful time if we don’t try understand your unique situation.
We can help you collect unpaid child support obligations if you meet the following qualifications:
- Over $5,000 in Child Support Owed to You
- Existing Child Support Order from an State of Administrative Court
- Must have Ex-Spouse’s (other parent) current home and work address
- Ex-Spouse (other parent) must have a steady job or other income
Our attorneys will take the time necessary to really learn your situation so that we can pursue a modified arrangement or court order that suits your needs and the needs of your children.