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Divorce Child Support - Who Can Sue

Divorce is hard and shakes up the entire family. The children are no different.

In 2001, 6.9 million parents who were due child support under the terms of agreements or current awards were due an average of $5,000, an aggregate of $34.9 billion in payments due. Of this amount, about $21.9 billion was received. That is just above 62 percent. That leaves almost 38 percent unpaid.

If this has happened to you, it is recommended that you seek the counsel of a divorce attorney to file a lawsuit for child support. The cost of trying to collect unpaid child support is substantial but can reap benefits.

Beginning in the mid-1980s, federal and state officials increased their focus on the issue of unpaid child support. Many laws were passed to improve enforcement and go after “deadbeats.” According to the U.S. Office of Child Support Enforcement, in 2003, federal and state child support enforcement agencies spent $5.2 billion to collect about $21.2 billion in child support.  That means each dollar of administrative costs generated about $4.13 of child support payments, which is a 300 percent gain.

If you are seeking unpaid child support payments, you should find a local divorce attorney to file the correct child support lawsuit.

Child Support Enforcement

Child support enforcement can come in a multiple of ways. The most common is a wage deduction order, in which a court orders an employer to send a portion of the obligor-parent’s wages to a state agency, which then sends the money to the parent who has custody of the child.

The wage deduction order will keep the child or children living in the same conditions if the parents had not gotten divorced.

Beginning in 1994, all new child support orders were required to provide for an automatic deduction from the obligor’s wages. The wage deduction takes effect immediately unless the parties have agreed otherwise.

If you are currently getting divorced and would like to set up a wage deduction order, contact your local divorce lawyer specializing in child support.

A new way to make sure the children of a divorce receive child support is the method of intercepting tax refunds from the obligated parent, usually the father. If the parent is receiving a substantial tax refund in June and is behind on payments, a divorce lawyer specializing in child support can step in and take part or all of that refund to satisfy the children. These types of tax refund interceptions average in the thousands of dollars.

If you are a single parent and the obligated parent is not paying child support, you should contact a divorce lawyer and this can be an option.

Another option is license revocation by the courts. If the obligated parent practices law, medicine, or works as a barber, beautician or plumber, their license can be revoked.  If your ex-partner works in any of these jobs and has failed to provide child support, contact a divorce lawyer specializing in child support to possibly suspend the obligated parent’s professional license.

Finally, if the obligated parent has no good reason, like the loss of a job, to not be paying child support, one of the last resorts in contempt of court. A finding of contempt of court can result in a fine, a jail term, or both.

If the obligated parent has a good job and is just being negligent and not paying support, the final option might be to contact a divorce lawyer specializing in child support to possibly find them in contempt.  The threat of jail time from a competent attorney can result in money for the parent with custody.

All in all, if your ex-spouse is not paying child support, it is recommended to consult a divorce attorney to investigate all of these options and see what is right for you to see substantial returns from a lawsuit.
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