If you're struggling with child support payments, you're not alone. Whether you’re finding it difficult to make payments or have trouble getting your ex to pay support, this is a problem that can affect anyone involved in a child support order.
Unlike other types of debt, such as credit card debt or income tax debt, child support debt can’t be discharged in bankruptcy or become unenforceable once enough time has elapsed.
For better or worse, child support debt never goes away except when it’s paid.
How to Deal with Problems Paying Child Support
Paying court-ordered child support is not an option. In fact, the consequences of failing to do so can be serious.
You may experience the following penalties when you have too much child support debt:
- Garnishment of a portion of your paycheck to pay off debt. If the court orders wage garnishment, it can be difficult and costly to remove this requirement.
- Loss of your driver’s license can also occur, making it difficult to get to work and live your life.
- Asset seizure, which involves the government claiming certain property you own and taking it as payment for child support debt.
- Jail time – in some cases, failure to pay child support can result in a jail sentence, especially if someone appears to be willfully disregarding the child support order when they could otherwise afford payments.
Many parents find it difficult to keep up with the financial responsibilities of raising a child, especially in today's economy. However, ignoring your child support debt can lead to serious consequences that can affect your personal and financial life for years to come.
What Should I Do If I Owe Child Support Debt?
When you owe child support debt, you must make every available effort to pay it back. If you can’t afford your child support due to a job loss or disability that affects your earning capacity, you are still liable for paying the amount originally ordered by the court.
That said, you can petition the court to review your child support order and modify it to meet your current financial needs. There’s no guarantee that the court will lower your child support – in fact, there is some risk that it may even raise it – but failing to address a child support order you can’t afford will only worsen your financial situation.
You can have a chance of modifying your child support to achieve a payment you can afford with help from Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. We understand the challenges of child support debt and are here to help. Our experienced attorneys can work with you to develop a plan to pay off your debt and avoid the consequences of non-payment.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation.