Legal options and remedies exist for parties struggling to make required child support payments, as well as for those seeking to collect unpaid child support amounts.
A Florida man is facing a charge in another state for failure to pay child support. If convicted of the charge, the man may face up to five years in prison. The man is charged with felony non-support and the violation of a court order. He was arrested but has been released on bond. The man is alleged to have failed to make court ordered support payments of $115 per week for two minor children for a period of eight years. As of 2010, following the issuance of the support order in 2002, the man owed $26,473 in unpaid child support.
While child support laws may vary by state, there is some commonality between the various laws. Before falling into a pattern of delinquent payments, and facing serious penalties such as various license suspensions, wage garnishment and tax refund withholding, as well as jail time, parents facing that situation may be able to request a child support modification. A modification may be granted based on a significant change in circumstances of a parent, such as a loss of, or significant change in, income, or a significant change in the circumstances of the child.
It is important that those who are obligated to pay monthly payments for child support but are experiencing difficulties meeting child support obligations understand that possible options for help may exist through the legal system. Likewise, those who are seeking to collect unpaid child support have legal options and resources available to help with child support enforcement. The Child Support Enforcement Act of 1984 empowers, and requires, governments to aid in the collection of child support.
Both those having difficulty making monthly payments required by a support agreement, and those seeking to enforce a support agreement, may seek help through the legal system. A trained family law attorney can help a party in either circumstance better understand the options available to pursue a child support modification or to collected ordered support under a support agreement.
Source: KWBE.com, “Florida Man Faces Arraignment on Child Support Charge,” Doug Kennedy, Jan. 7, 2014