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When your child’s other parent fails to pay support

On Behalf of | Jun 22, 2020 | Family Law

Not receiving child support when you have a formal order in place may be more than frustrating. It may make it difficult to support your son or daughter, and it may, too, lead to financial struggles on your end. 

In most cases, the state of Arkansas withholds some of your child’s noncustodial parent’s income to send to you each month for support. But if your child’s mother or father fails to uphold the terms of the existing child support agreement, he or she may face harsh penalties. 

State and federal laws dictate that your ex must have accrued a certain amount of debt before facing penalties for doing so. However, once he or she hits that threshold, the state may take any number of enforcement efforts to make your account current. 

What trouble might a parent with an obligation to pay child support face following nonpayment? 

Penalties for nonpayment 

How the state penalizes your child’s mother or father for nonpayment of child support depends on circumstances, but he or she may face specific repercussions once the payments fall into arrears. In some cases, the state may intercept any lottery winnings or tax refunds the child support-paying parent has coming his or her way to help cover the past-due support. 

In others, the Arkansas Office of Child Support Enforcement may place a lien on the paying party’s bank accounts, personal property or real estate until the account becomes current. The state may also suspend the non-paying parent’s professional or business license. It may, too, strip your ex of recreational permits, such as hunting or fishing licenses, until he or she pays everything due. 

Additional potential repercussions 

Failing to pay mandated child support may also lead to your child’s other parent having to surrender his or her passport. You may also be able to take that parent back to court in your attempts to collect past-due child support. If your ex winds up in contempt of court, he or she may face other penalties, such as time behind bars or steep fines.