Monday, June 30, 2014

An Attorney Can Help You Get a Child Support Judgment

If you are divorced and receiving child support, an attorney can help you to collect on that support when your ex stops paying.  Many parents that are required to pay child support live up to their end of the bargain.  The challenge is that if they stop paying it can create a financial hardship for the one that is supposed to receive the payments.  Fortunately, there are ways to obtain your court ordered child support.

During your initial consultation, we will discuss your specific case and the circumstances surrounding the non-payment of child support.  We will need to know how much they are supposed to pay every month, how far behind they are, and if they have been making any form of payment recently.  Once retained, we will review the court order before making a recommendation on how to proceed.

As an attorney, we can help you to calculate how much is owed to you and draft a letter to be sent to your ex formerly requesting payment.  Sometimes people will respond to a lawyer, even when they have been ignoring your request.  The understanding that you will take legal action is a very compelling incentive to work out a payment plan.  This is an option for resolving the dispute and can even be settled out of court.  The key is to have a lawyer draft the agreements so that if they fall behind again, you have additional documentation.

If your ex is unresponsive or simply refuses to cooperate and pay child support, the next option is to go to court.  We will have the opportunity to present the judge with the initial order to pay child support, the documentation proving that support has not been received, and a formal request for a judgment in order to collect on what is owed.

The judge will typically review the income and employment information for your ex prior to making a final ruling.  Any information that you have regarding their employment should be provided prior to the hearing so that we can properly prepare and include it into our arguments.  As your attorney, we will argue the case on your behalf and make a compelling argument for the judge to enforce the child support order. 

If your ex is currently employed, their wages may be garnished in order to collect the child support.  This means that there employer would receive a letter informing them that a certain amount of money needs to be withheld from their paycheck and paid towards the obligation.  If you know that your spouse has that money available, and can prove it, the judge may order a lump sum to be paid at one time.  The key in both scenarios is proving that they have the resources to pay child support.

If your ex refuses to comply with the judgment, they could be sentenced to jail on a temporary basis.  This threat is typically enough to prompt people to start paying.  As a local attorney, we can help you through the process so that you can begin collecting the money you deserve.