ROCKVILLE, Maryland. According to Bloomberg, fewer than half of parents who had custody of their children actually received the full amount of child support due to them. This is troubling news because it means that children are losing out on crucial payments that can ensure they get the food, clothes, medical care, and activities they need to grow up healthy and happy. Even worse, as many as 3 in 10 parents who have sole custody will see absolutely no child support at all. This can ruin a parent’s financial plans and put single parents in poverty.
Researchers have found that mothers disproportionately carry the burden of poverty following divorce. Mothers may find themselves more commonly struggling to care for children, work a job, and pay expenses. Yet, mothers are not the only ones who suffer from unpaid child support. Fathers with sole custody can suffer too if a deadbeat spouse doesn’t pay. According to Bloomberg, the total child support that went unpaid in 2015 was $33.7 billion.
According to the Spruce, there is quite a bit of misunderstanding and misconception about what makes a deadbeat parent. Not all parents who miss child support payments are “deadbeats.” There are certainly legitimate reasons where a parent might fall behind. For example, a person might lose a job or get ill, requiring them to miss payments or adjust their child support payments. If this is the case, it is important that parents seek child support modifications so that they don’t end up getting in trouble with the law. However, when a parent can pay child support, but chooses not to, this is not only a violation of the law, it certainly puts a parent in “deadbeat” status. Parents may hide assets, or simply refuse to pay. This is against the law because both parents are required to contribute financially to raising a child.
There are many actions the court can take to get child support to the parent who needs it. States can garnish a person’s pay, garnish unemployment compensation, take state or federal income tax refunds, or enforce jail penalties, in some cases. The state may have other ways to help get the money. In some cases, the state can deny the deadbeat parent the ability to get a passport or to receive certain types of professional licenses.
If you are a parent who is owed child support, it is important to fight back. Barkley & Kennedy are child custody lawyers in Rockville, Maryland who can help you get the child support you may deserve under the law. If you are getting divorced and are seeking sole custody, you may also be wondering what child support you may be entitled to receive. This is important to consider because it may play a crucial role in planning your financial future without your ex. If you are getting divorced, you need qualified support from a leading family law attorney in Rockville, Maryland. Speak to Barkley & Kennedy today to learn more about your rights.