Going through a divorce can be particularly difficult when the couple shares a child. Not only will they need to agree upon a suitable child custody arrangement or visitation schedule, but they may even need to determine whether or not child support would be necessary. Although most people assume that the worst will be over once they have sorted out these matters and finalized their divorce, some are subsequently faced with a whole new set of problems when their former spouse refuses to abide by the terms of their separation—most notably when they fail to make child support payments. In many cases, the custodial parent relies on the monetary support that they receive each month from their ex-spouse, so it can become extremely problematic when the payments stop coming in. In this situation, they would have one of two options: work it out with their spouse amicably or take the matter to court.
If talking doesn't work, the custodial parent may need to enforce the order by bringing the issue to the attention of the court. In doing so, the court would be able to take legal measures on their behalf. Typically, a hearing would be scheduled in which both parties would have the opportunity to tell their side of the story. If, at that point, the non-paying spouse still refuses to cooperate, the court can hold them in contempt for up to 180 days or until they pay the child support that is due. In other cases, the court may take measures to garnish their wages, intercept their tax refunds, suspend their occupational driver's license or even seize their property. If the non-paying spouse moves to a different state in an effort to run from their child support obligations, the federal government can step in and utilize the powers of the Federal Child Support Recovery Act or the Parent Locator Service.
This program would allow them to use resources like the Social Security Administration or the Internal Revenue Service to track them down and enforce the order. For this reason, it is important to understand that you have options if your former spouse has refused to pay child support. With the help of a Jacksonville divorce lawyer from Charles E. Willmott, P.A., you can get started immediately. Our firm will work diligently to ensure that you are able to recover the money that you are owed, so there is no reason why you should wait any longer to enlist the professional help that you will need. Contact our office today at (904) 849-5183 to schedule an initial consultation with our knowledgeable attorney.