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Orlando Criminal Attorney > Blog > Family > What Happens If I Fail to Pay Court Ordered Child Support?

What Happens If I Fail to Pay Court Ordered Child Support?


Child support are payments the court orders that the noncustodial parent pays. The money is then assigned to assist the custodial parent with the costs of bringing up the child. If a noncustodial parent neglects or fails to make payments, then each state has laws directing how child support orders will be enforced. Florida’s procedures are intended to prevent failure to make child support payments.

In case the noncustodial parent refuses, Florida has many laws to enforce child support payments and may include reporting poor credit to credit agencies, garnishing payments directly via their paycheck from their employer, suspension of the noncustodial parent’s driver’s license, and taking the tax refund of the noncustodial parent.

Wage Garnishment and Child Support

Wage garnishment is a procedure used to collect child support payments. According to this procedure, the court can order the employer of a noncustodial parent to withhold the child support payments from the employee’s paycheck and send them those payments to a specific party, such as the state or the custodial parent. This specific punishment is generally seen as a shame and could even impact your status at work. Such garnishment can likewise include federal and state tax refund checks.

If you fail to pay child support payment for thirty days, this lack of payment can be reported to credit organizations. The reporting will take place until the amount is fully paid.

Refusing to Pay Child Support

If a parent refuses to pay child support, the court can then hold him or her in contempt of its orders. For contempt, the court must find that the parent had money to pay but refused.

When a child support payment has been ordered by a judge and you feel the payment is not fair or you are unable to make the payment, it is best to file an order to the court requesting to adjust or change the payment. Payments can be changed only if the payee’s conditions have changed considerably or it’s in the child’s best interest. The individual in charge of paying child support cannot just stop making payments or reduce their child support payments without a court order.

Additional Fines and Penalties

Some states, including Florida, may charge extra penalties and fines for not paying child support. In addition to fines and monetary penalties, those who fail to pay child support may have a criminal or civil warrant issued against them which could result in jail or prison time. A parent who refuses to pay court ordered child support may also have their driver’s license suspended, may have their bank accounts seized, their vehicle registration may be seized, and their tax refund may be garnished.

Talk to an Attorney and Get Help for Your Child Support Order 

The laws surrounding child support can be complex and tricky. If you are owed child support and are not getting paid, or owe child support and don’t feel that you should have to pay it, contact the Orlando family attorneys at O’Mara Law Group today.


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