Consequences of Not Paying Child Support

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What Does Child Support Cover?

Child support is intended for the benefit of the child and is usually paid to the spouse who has primary custody over the child. Child support payments are very important for the upbringing and well-being of the child or children that they support. Payments generally cover:

What Are the Legal Consequences of Not Paying Child Support?

It is very important that child support payments be made in a timely manner and in accordance with the amounts and dates specified in the child support court order. Failure to follow the provisions in a child support order can lead to negative legal consequences. Missing payments can lead to legal consequences.

The court could issue a warrant for the arrest of the parent who has missed child support payments. Warrants issued in connection with child support may be classified as either criminal or civil:

In addition to the legal penalties described above, failure to pay child support can have other consequences, including:

What Can I Do If I Am Having Difficulty Making Child Support Payments?

If you are having difficulties meeting child support obligations, the following options may be available:

1) Contact your child support enforcement agency and inquire about a temporary payment plan. This may help with payments in arrears and late payments.

2) Schedule a court date and make a request to modify child support payments. A modification of child support payments may be granted if you can show a change in circumstances, such as:

3) You may wish to consider the above options even before you have missed a payment in order to avoid the legal penalties for delinquency.

Should I Hire a Lawyer for Missed Child Support Payments?

It is common for parents to experience financial hardship that affects their ability to render payments. Of course, it is best if you can avoid late or missed child support payments altogether. Failing to make child support payments can have many undesirable consequences. You should be sure to contact a family lawyer for issues with child support, especially if a warrant has been issued in connection with any court orders.

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Last Modified: 04-21-2014 02:43 PM PDT

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