Child support orders are a legal obligation that can have serious consequences if not fulfilled. Whether you are depending on support from an ex or have an order to submit support payments, there are a few things you should know about enforcement methods when the supporting party does not make payments. According to the Missouri Bar, the Family Support Division assists parents seeking to enforce support orders.
The following are three ways that the division may enforce support orders if it becomes necessary. Whether you are on the giving or receiving end of child support, acquiring a legal representative may help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights. There are options available for parents who are struggling to make payments and those seeking support from a noncustodial parent.
1. Wage garnishment
Wage garnishment is typically the most common and the first step in collecting overdue child support payments. It surprises many people when their paycheck is leaner than usual, and this is because courts can sometimes impose a garnishment even without notice. After the payment of any overdue sum, deductions from paychecks may continue.
2. License suspension
In some cases, courts may suspend or revoke a noncustodial parent's driver’s license due to nonpayment of a child support order. Professional licenses may be subject to disciplinary action, too, the parent does not make any payments. If law enforcement pulls you over with a suspended license, this will only compound the legal trouble you are already in, so avoiding this penalty is important.
3. Interception of tax refunds
Noncustodial parents who owe significant amounts of child support may find that their tax return vanishes come April. Indeed, courts can deduct any sum that is overdue from the refund you receive to pay it to the custodial parent. This depends on the sum of your refund and the amount you owe, but it is a possibility nonetheless.