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Looking at the penalties for failing to pay child support

On Behalf of | Aug 3, 2022 | Family Law

Whether you currently find yourself in the middle of a difficult divorce and you worry about child support obligations in the future or you have already missed payments you owe, it is vital to understand the serious repercussions associated with failing to make payments on time.

Non-custodial parents who fail to pay court-ordered child support can face serious penalties that affect many different aspects of their lives, from their finances to their driving privileges and even their freedom.

Falling behind on child support in Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Resources goes over the different penalties that parents can face if they fail to pay child support. Some of the enforcement actions taken in Pennsylvania include publishing the name of a parent who fails to pay support in papers, placing a lien on property, seizing bank accounts and intercepting tax refunds. You could also lose your passport privileges.

In addition, you could lose your driver’s license if you do not pay child support, as well as your professional or recreational license. In fact, parents can face contempt of court charges for not paying child support, and this could result in up to six months behind bars.

Addressing child support payment challenges

During a divorce, it is vital to understand how courts calculate child support and do what you can to make sure that the awards are fair. If you have fallen behind, a payment plan could benefit you. Additionally, you should realize that some parents can modify their child support order due to major financial changes (such as losing a job), and this could help you avoid serious penalties.