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Seeking Child Support When Your Former Partner Does Not Pay

Posted on in Divorce

child-supportIf you have a child support agreement in place with your former partner, you each have obligations to uphold. If your partner fails to uphold his or her obligation to make regular payments for your child's care, you can easily find yourself stretching your budget to make up for these missed payments. You should not have to do this. When the court orders a child support agreement for a child, it is both parents' responsibility to follow all requirements written into the child support order.

There are many reasons why a parent can become delinquent with his or her child support payments. If your former partner misses a payment, talk to him or her about it to see why he or she failed to pay. Your former partner might have experienced an unforeseen emergency like a pricey car repair or medical bill. When this is the case, you may be able to work out a way for him or her to get the money to you when he or she can, rather than involving the court. This is often the easiest way to resolve the issue for all parties. When this is not possible or your former partner misses months' worth of child support, you have the right to take legal action.

Criminal Charges for Failing to Pay Child Support

In Illinois, it is a misdemeanor to owe more than $5,000 in child support or fail to make one's payments for six months or longer. The penalties for this misdemeanor include fines and jail time, as outlined in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. If the amount of child support owed reaches $20,000 or more, the parent faces steeper penalties. Other penalties for failure to make child support payments include a driver's license suspension, vocational and professional license suspensions, hunting and fishing license suspensions, and passport suspensions.

Ways to Obtain Owed Child Support

If your former partner does not make his or her required child support payments and does not have a legal reason for failing to make them, you may seek the money your child needs by contacting the Illinois Department of Child Support Services. The department can work with other state departments to do the following to secure the money for your child:
  • Garnish your former partner's wages;
  • Seize his or her tax return;
  • Use a private collection agency to obtain the money; or
  • Obtain a lien against his or her property.

Do not feel guilty about taking legal action against your child's other parent. Your child needs financial support from both of his or her parents.

Experienced Child Support Attorneys in Kane County

Goostree Law Group proudly serves parents and families throughout Kane County. If your former partner has missed a few child support payments or has been dramatically negligent with his or her obligation to your child, you have the right to take legal action to get the money your child deserves. Contact our experienced Kane County divorce attorneys today for your initial legal consultation with one of the experienced family attorneys on our team.
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