Many divorced couples in Texas have children who are still minors or in other ways still qualify for financial support from their parents. The sad truth of the matter is, though, many of them do not receive the funds they need. The support-paying parent either can't afford to pay or simply refuses to. If you are a custodial parent who is not receiving your court-ordered child support, you can do something about it.
Every state has child support enforcement options available to those parents who are struggling to collect funds from their exes. All you have to do is file the appropriate complaint in court.
What enforcement options are available?
Generally speaking, there are quite a few. Some of the most commonly used are:
- Withholding tax refunds
- Suspending driver's, business or other professional licenses
- Wage garnishment
- Passport denial
The most severe consequence, however, is jail time. Those who fail to pay child support may face incarceration, which certainly will not help them earn the money needed to make their support payments.
Payer moved out of state
If your ex moved out of state, enforcement options are still available. It is a requirement that states work together in order to enforce the payment of child support. It may take a little longer to start receiving payments when having to utilize enforcement options out of state, but it is possible.
Past-due payment collection
When utilizing enforcement options, the state will not just try to collect money owed now. They can also request past-due payments as well. This, too, may take some time to collect, particularly if the payer is years behind.
When to take action
If your ex is refusing to make child support payments, regardless of his or her reason, you may take action immediately. You do not have to wait and struggle for years. An experienced family law attorney can review your situation and help you file the necessary complaint in court. The state will take it from there and send you any money it collects through the various enforcement options it utilizes.
If the issue is that the child support order is unaffordable for the payer, it may be possible to seek an order modification, even if it is temporary, to help encourage payment. Again, this is something to discuss with your legal counsel.