What To Do if your Former Spouse Refuses to Pay Child Support

Following a divorce, a noncustodial parent may be required to make child support payments to the custodial parent to help pay for their child’s care. This money is meant to cover goods for the child, such as food, clothing, and personal needs as well as offset some of the expenses that the custodial parent incurs, such as housing and utilities.

When a parent does not pay his or her required child support, the custodial parent can take legal action against him or her to get the money that their child needs. If your former spouse has been consistently late with his or her child support payments, talk to him or her about it before taking legal action. Your former partner might be experiencing financial hardship and cannot afford to make his or her child support payments. If this is the case, he or she is better off seeking a temporary modification of his or her child support amount than simply becoming delinquent and facing the legal consequences or jail.

Legal Consequences for Delinquent Parents

If your former spouse is able to pay his or her child support but does not, you can file a motion with the court to take legal action against him or her. There are a few ways you can receive the money your child needs, such as the following:

  • If your former spouse is receiving workers’ compensation or unemployment payments, the Child Support Program of the New Jersey Department of Labor can deduct his or her required child support amount from these payments.

  • The state can seize any money he or she may receive in tax refunds to cover missed child support payments.

  • His or her lottery winnings may be seized for child support payments.

  • The state can garnish your former spouse’s wages to make his or her required child support payments.

  • The state may put a lien against his or her property until the child support is paid.

  • The state may arrest the former spouse and keep them in jail until a purge is paid against the child support arrears.

A delinquent parent can also face non-monetary consequences, such as the following:

  • A driver’s license suspension.

  • Suspension of his or her professional or vocational licenses.

  • Denial if he or she seeks a passport.

  • Jail time.

If you are a parent currently making child support payments, do not allow yourself to fall behind on your payments. Your child needs your financial support and if you do not provide this support, you could face serious consequences. If you truly cannot afford to make your payments, consider filing for a modification of your child support amount.

Child support can become a contentious issue between a divorcing couple. To learn more about how child support is calculated and what your rights and obligations are as a parent, contact The Law Office of Eric B. Hannum Esq., LLC. today at 732-370-9596 to schedule your legal consultation to discuss these issues. We proudly serve clients in Ocean, Monmouth, Middlesex, Burlington, and Mercer counties.

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