Child support enforcement: The good, the bad and the ugly

Bringing children into the world is a miraculous thing. They bring with them so much light and joy. When couples choose to bring new life into their homes, providing for these little ones and protecting them is generally of top priority.

Sadly, not all relationships work out, but the desire to do what is best for one’s children always remains. Unfortunately, this is not always easy to do. After divorce or separation, you may find that financially providing for your children can be quite the challenge. If you are a non-custodial parent in the state of Colorado and have orders to pay child support but fail to do so, the custodial parent may use enforcement options to attempt to collect.

The good about child support enforcement:

The child support enforcement system ensures children are receiving the monetary support they need until they reach adulthood. Some enforcement remedies require court approval, while others can be taken care of at an administrative level. In either case, when a non-custodial parent is behind on payments, regardless of the reason, the custodial parent does have options available to secure the necessary funds to support his or her child.

The bad about child support enforcement:

Child support enforcement, though good for custodial parents and children who are not receiving their court ordered support, can be bad for non-custodial parents. Common enforcement remedies include:

  • Wage garnishment
  • Suspension of personal and professional licenses
  • Passport denial
  • Credit reporting
  • Interception of tax refunds
  • Liens
  • Being held in contempt of court

If you face any of these enforcement options, both your personal and professional life are likely to suffer.

The ugly about child support enforcement:

The ugly about child support enforcement is the potential for criminal charges against the non-custodial parent. While this may seem to be an extreme measure, if you fail to make payments, even after the utilization of certain enforcement options against you in the attempt to collect, you could find yourself in serious legal hot water.

Those who fall so far behind on payments, if convicted in criminal court, could face jail time and significant fines for failure to pay. This, of course, does not make it easy to acquire the funds necessary to provide support.

Take action sooner rather than later

If you find yourself struggling to keep up with court ordered child support payments, you can do something about it before enforcement options are utilized against you. In the state of Colorado, parents ordered to provide financial support for their children do have the right to seek order adjustments. In doing so, it is possible to avoid the bad and ugly that can come with support enforcement.

Achieving the modification of a child support order is not the easiest thing to do. This does not mean it is impossible. An experienced family law attorney can assist you in fighting for a support order that fits within your current budget, making it easier to stay on top of your financial obligation.