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Bucks County Divorce Attorneys > Blog > Personal Injury > What If A Parent Fails To Pay Child Support?

What If A Parent Fails To Pay Child Support?


Often, child support payments are put in place during the divorce process. You and your ex-spouse could have landed on an amount through lawyers negotiating, or the payment amount could have been set by a Pennsylvania or New Jersey court. If you were awarded child support but have yet to receive a payment, or if you were receiving payments for awhile and then they suddenly stopped, talk to a Bucks County personal injury attorney about your options.

Payments are put in place for the health and wellbeing of the kids. If the paying parent has encountered a financial issue and is unable to afford the payments, they need to follow certain steps to obtain a modification. You, as the non-paying, receiving parent do not need to negotiate through a modification. Instead, talk to your own lawyer about your rights and enforcing a parenting plan and divorce agreement.

Lawyer Letters, Court Action, and Other Ways to Enforce Support

When a parent is violating a child support agreement or court order, serious penalties can follow. A person is not permitted to simply disobey their financial commitments. Sometimes, once you begin working with an attorney, your lawyer can craft and deliver a letter that reminds the paying parent of the consequences of non-payments, leading to a conclusion.

If notification is not enough, filing a court action could be the next step. While you can file paperwork for support enforcement on your own, an attorney will do that for you. Also, they will represent you should the dispute lead to an enforcement hearing.

Possible Consequences for the Non-Paying Parent

A range of solutions could be put in place if a parent refuses to pay the child support they are responsible for, including the following.

  • Payments automatically taken from their employment paychecks.
  • Funds withheld from workers’ comp funds, social security or veteran’s benefits.
  • Liens on real estate holdings, including primary and secondary properties.
  • Restricting professional licenses.
  • Garnering funds from legal settlements.
  • Seizing loitering winnings or tax refunds.
  • Reports to credit bureaus initiated

Additionally, contempt of court charges are possible. Moving to access the child support payments you have a right to is not acting spitefully, it is stepping up for what is rightfully yours.

If the paying parent simply can’t afford the payments, then different agreement terms can be reached, but that doesn’t mean you should accept non-payment behavior. To learn about your best path forward, speak with a Bucks County personal injury attorney. With an experienced lawyer on your side, you may have more ways to access financial resources you need than you initially thought.

Were child support payments included in your Pennsylvania or New Jersey divorce agreement? If so, your right to receive payments is protected by the law. If you haven’t been getting your court-awarded support payments, talk to the compassionate attorneys at Kardos, Rickles & Hand. There is a way forward, whether an official communication prompts payment or further legal action is required. To begin your path to resolution, call 215-968-6602.

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