According to a Congressional report only 38% of parents with current child support orders actually receive child support. Child support is ordered by a court and is enforceable with some very stiff penalties, fines, and license revocations, not to mention possible jail time. Why then are so many parents not paying their child support?
The economic conditions of the past decade have certainly contributed to parents’ abilities to actually pay child support. If your financial circumstances change, you can seek to modify your child support order to fit your finances. Don’t wait for the situation to become dire or for threats of incarceration to occur before consulting an attorney about your rights.
Many parents do not pay child support because it carries a heavy emotional toll. The paying parent fought with, was hurt by, and was ultimately rejected by the other parent. There is a long emotional history that causes pain as you continue to parent together. In addition to trying to co-parent, the parent who now spends less time with his child is told by the court that he must give money to the other parent every single month and will have no control over where the money goes, what it is used for and whether it actually is used to benefit the child. That can be a lot to ask of someone.
Parents are not given control over the amount of child support. In most cases, child support is set by a formula, and is dictated either by the court or the parents’ attorneys work through the formula and simply tell the parents what they will be paying. Parents who use alternative dispute resolution techniques often have better outcomes and feelings associated with child support because they have the opportunity to discuss amounts and break down why it is needed and what it will be used for.
DeTorres & DeGeorge provides representation in divorce and child support cases and also offers divorce mediation the Bridgewater and Warren Township areas of New Jersey. We’re ready to talk to you about your case. Call us now.