What Can I Do If My Child’s Other Parent Is Not Paying Child Support?

child support, Rolling Meadows family lawyerChild support is designed to help a child with unmarried or divorced parents receive financial support from both of his or her parents. The amount of child support a parent pays is calculated by Illinois courts using the “income shares” method. This methodology takes both parent’s income and financial status into consideration to arrive at a child support payment amount which is fair and reasonable for both parents.

Illinois takes child support orders very seriously. A parent who does not pay his or her court-ordered support can face serious consequences, including criminal charges. If you are not currently receiving child support from your child’s other parent, read on to learn about your options under Illinois law.

Child Support Must Be Ordered by the Court in Order to Be Legally Enforceable

Sometimes unmarried parents decide to create a casual child support arrangement. They may think that this option is easier and more cost-effective than having a formal child support order managed by the courts. Unfortunately, casual support arrangements are often not followed through with. A parent may experience some type of financial hardship and decide that the child support payment he or she agreed to is no longer a priority. In situations like these, it is often the child who is negatively affected by the missing funds.

If you have not already done so, it is critical to establish parentage and pursue a formal child support order through the Illinois courts system. Only court-ordered child support is enforceable by law.

Consequences of Child Support Nonpayment

Children have the right to receive monetary support from both of their parents. If your child’s other parent has neglected to pay his or her court-ordered child support, there are several steps you can take to pursue payment. The Child Support Enforcement Act of 1984 permits district attorneys, called “State’s Attorneys” in Illinois, to assist parents in collecting child support from a non-paying parent. The State’s Attorney’s office, Illinois Child Support Services, or a qualified family law attorney can help you understand what steps you need to take to pursue payment.

A parent who has not been paying support can face many consequences for nonpayment including wage and bank account garnishment, property liens, tax return interception, and driver’s license suspension or revocation. In some situations, a parent who refuses to pay can even be charged with a criminal offense.

Contact a Cook County Family Law Attorney

If you need help establishing parentage, pursuing child support, modifying a current child support order, or have other family law concerns, contact an experienced Rolling Meadows child support lawyer from Cosley Law Office. Call us today at 847-253-3100 to schedule a free, confidential consultation.





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