There are several methods of child support enforcement available to recipient parents.
One Florida woman and her son have had difficulty receiving child support payments from the child’s father. The woman says that the court-ordered child support payments were sporadic over the course of two years. The woman claims she called the Department of Revenue many times. The woman acknowledges that the father’s license was suspended; however, it was reinstated soon after he made one small payment. The Department of Revenue has commented that it reinstates driver’s licenses in three ways, including when wage garnishment begins, when the parent responsible for the delinquent payments makes a lump sum payment or if the parent who owes the delinquent payments becomes disabled or unemployed. The Department of Revenue re-commenced the license revocation process against the father, however, several on-time payments followed.
Child support enforcement is conducted by several means. The Child Support Enforcement Act of 1984 allows district attorneys and state attorney generals to collect child support from a custodial parent who has failed to make required monthly payments.
Penalties that can face a parent that fails to make child support payments include wage garnishment, property liens, negative reports to credit bureaus, freezing of bank accounts, suspension of driver’s and professional licenses and contempt orders from the court. Jail time may also face a parent who is delinquent on child support payments, however, this penalty is usually reserved as a last resort because a jailed parent is less likely to make child support payments. The U.S. Department of State can also refuse to issue a passport to a parent facing delinquent payments.
Parents who are facing financial difficulty and are unable to pay can request child support modification. No parent will be jailed if simply unable to pay.
There are many methods of child support enforcement and collection. Options also exist for parents facing financial difficulty who find themselves unable to pay on a current support agreement.
Source: ABC Action News, “How Florida gets missed child support payments,” Jackie Callaway, Jan. 17, 2013