You could fall behind on child support you owe for different reasons, whether you face a serious health crisis that affects your finances or you lose your job. However, you should understand the serious consequences associated with missing child support payments and do everything in your power to address back support swiftly (or avoid falling behind in the first place).
In addition to financial penalties, missing child support payments can have a serious impact on your mental health and even your freedom.
What could happen if you do not pay child support?
The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services outlines some of the penalties that non-custodial parents face when they do not pay child support. For example, your name could appear in a newspaper and become reported to credit bureaus. You could also have your bank accounts and tax refunds seized, and the state could place a lien on your property.
The state could suspend your driver’s license as well as occupational and recreational licenses. You could also face the loss of your passport privileges and contempt of court charges, which could result in time behind bars or probation.
How can you avoid falling behind on child support?
If you worry about staying current on your child support order as a result of major financial challenges you face, you could have the ability to modify your child support order. This could make your child support payments more manageable and help you stay current. In addition, setting up a payment plan and carefully managing your finances could help you address back support you owe.
Whether you already owe back child support or worry about becoming delinquent, make sure you have a clear understanding of all options.