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Enforcement actions for delinquent child support

On Behalf of | Sep 16, 2021 | Child Support |

Raising a child may be rewarding, but it does come with many expenses. Following a divorce or the end of a relationship, parents in Virginia and elsewhere the children still need to be cared for. In order to ensure this is maintained, one parent may seek child support. This is especially true for custodial parents. However, even when child support is established, it is not always timely paid. Thus, one might need to take action to enforce a child support order.

Child support enforcement

The best way to avoid child support enforcement is to stay current on payments. However, this does not always occur. Setting up a payment plan or automatic income withholding is another way to ensure timely payments. However, these measures do not always work. When this occurs, it may be necessary to work with state or local child support enforcement offices.

Wide range of actions

Enforcement actions for delinquent child support payment can range greatly; however, there are common measures taken to ensure these payments are recovered. First, income withholding or wage garnishment could occur. The child support agency will work with the noncustodial parent’s employer to set this up. Next, the child support agency could intercept certain payments to satisfy past due child support payments. One’s tax refunds, Social Security checks and lottery winnings are all susceptible to interception.

Third, a lien or attachment could be placed on the property of the noncustodial parent. This means that the state now owns a portion of the property, which in turn means that the sale of the property cannot occur until child support payments are satisfied. Attachments are commonly placed on real estate, cars and bank accounts. Other enforcement actions include passport denial, license suspension and even jail time.

Whether one seeks to enforce a child support order or one is facing consequences due to delinquent child support, it is imperative to fully understand the situation and what options are available. If child support cannot be paid, it may be necessary to revisit the order and seek modification. This could help ensure child support can be timely received.