Paying child support is an obligation that parents all across Florida must fulfill. Every month, they write checks or have money deducted from a paycheck to support a child they might not have a relationship with or see as much as they’d like to. Even more frustrating is the fact that the other parent receiving this money may be someone the paying parent hates, distrusts, or resents.
Considering all the negative emotions that can come with child support obligations, it can be tempting for people in this position to just stop making payments and avoid the whole situation. However, if this sounds like something you are considering, you should be aware that doing so will only make matters worse for you and your child.
Parents who fail to pay child support (either because they can’t or don’t want to) will face some aggressive enforcement actions from the state.
If you don’t make payments in full and on time, you could:
- Lose your driver’s license
- Lose a professional license you need to do your job
- Have your tax refunds or lottery winnings intercepted
- Have your wages garnished
- Be denied a new or renewed passport
- Be incarcerated for contempt of court orders
- Lose custody or visitation rights
It should also be noted that not paying support can destroy any relationship you have with your children. They might see you as not caring about them or being unable to do what you are supposed to in order to support them.
Failing to pay child support could also damage your reputation in your community and at your job, not to mention your credit score.
Considering how much damage can be done by delinquency, it should be clear that paying child support is in your best interests. If you find that you cannot keep up with payments or if you feel that a current order is unfair, you should still do your best to comply with current orders while working with your attorney to seek a modification.