Raising a child in Florida is often expensive. That’s why non-custodial parents must pay child support as ordered by the court. Failure to do so can make it difficult to provide for all of a child’s needs and can also lead to serious legal trouble. The Balance explains what you can do if you’re owed child support.
Courts have a few different options at their disposal to deal with so-called “deadbeat” parents. For instance, if the parent is gainfully employee his or her wages may be garnished. This entails taking a portion of a person’s paycheck, which is then transferred to the parent with sole custody. The court may also make a lien against property owned, such as a vehicle or home. Bank accounts can also be frozen until the money owed is paid.
In some case, the non-custodial parent may even be jailed. This usually occurs when child support hasn’t been paid for some time, and the amount owed has become exorbitant. However, many courts are reluctant to utilize this option unless the circumstances are extreme. It stands to reason that a person who is incarcerated would be unable to remit payment.
When filing a claim for back child support, evidence must be presented to show that child support was not paid and also that attempts were made to collect child support owed. Parents can also request retroactive child support payments. Divorce cases can be lengthy, and the custodial parent may request support from the time when the divorce was initiated to when the case was actually decided. The non-custodial parent may also be able to present receipts for items bought for the child, although this typically depends on the discretion of the court.