The Cost of Not Paying Child Support
As parents, we have important rights and responsibilities related to our children. One of these responsibilities is supporting our children financially. If you are divorced with children, you likely either pay or receive child support, and this is an important component of your children’s ongoing well-being. If your ex isn’t paying child support that’s been ordered by the court, you and your children are being harmed. The fact is, however, that your ex – as the obligor – faces serious legal consequences for his or her nonpayment. If you aren’t receiving your child support payments, consult with an experienced Fort Worth family law attorney today.
Child Support Enforcement
The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) enforces child support orders, and it has plenty of options when it comes to this important task. In fact, the cost of not paying one’s child-support obligations can go far beyond the simple garnishment of wages and the interception of tax refunds with which you are probably familiar. These costs can include:
Having one’s driver’s license, professional license, hunting license, and/or fishing license suspended
Being charged with civil contempt and facing a sentence that includes jail time and/or fines for every missed child support payment (on top of the payments themselves)
Being charged with criminal contempt and facing time in jail until the child support obligation is paid in full (or until a purge amount is paid)
Having a lien put on one’s property, bank account, financial portfolio, settlement award, insurance plans, and more
Being denied a new passport or a passport renewal
Having one’s lottery earnings intercepted
Further the OAG is required to report parents who are in child-support arrears to the credit reporting agencies.
The Personal Cost of Not Making Child Support Payments
All told, the personal cost of an obligor who fails to pay child support can be immense. In addition to the negative consequences delineated above, the parent misses out on the opportunity to help support his or her children financially, which can also take its toll on their personal relationships with one another.
Your Child Support
If your ex isn’t paying the child support owed to you, you may be tempted to withhold visitation with the children in an attempt to motivate him or her. This, however, is not only a terrible idea but could also put you in contempt of court. Child support and visitation schedules are two separate issues, and one does not affect the other. This means that one cannot be used as a wedge against the other. If your ex-spouse isn’t paying child support, it’s in you and your children’s best interests to exercise your rights by obtaining professional legal counsel.
If Your Ex Isn’t Paying Child Support, Consult with an Experienced Fort Worth Family Law Attorney Today
Child support is elemental to your children’s ongoing health, happiness, and well-being. If you aren’t receiving the child support you’re owed, the experienced family law attorneys at The Law Office of J. Kevin Clark in Fort Worth have the dedication, skill, and knowledge to help you. For more information, please contact us today.