Recent reports show that both taxpayers and single parents are owed about $108 billion in child support. This is because when single parents cannot get the back child support they are owed, taxpayers end up supporting many children through public programs, such as welfare. Though this is quite a burden for taxpayers, it is even harder for the single parents with no help from their ex. For some people, the child support they are owed is equivalent to about half their income, which is why they often need government assistance. But the single parents not getting their child support payments are not the only people who have to suffer the consequences.
What Are the penalties for Not Paying?
There are ways to convince parents that paying the requested child support amount is in fact in their best interest. For example, the IRS holds onto any tax refunds owed to the parent who refuses to pay child support. If the parent has a job, his or her wages may be garnished to ensure the child support is paid. Of course, looking at the amount of child support that is owed in this nation, it is clear some people find ways to avoid these penalties.
How Can People Get Away with Not Paying Child Support?
Some parents are aware their paychecks will be garnished, so they simply quit their job. When they realize they need money to get by, they will work under the table, getting paid in cash so the government cannot take their wages. In many cases, the custodial parent is aware their ex has a job and is just lying to the government, but they might not report it. If they do, they have to furnish proof of this to the judge to have a chance of ensuring their ex pays the penalties, and most importantly starts paying them.
How Can We Improve the Situation?
Some people have made suggestions on how to improve the chance of single parents getting the child support they are owed. One possible improvement would be simply having more employees at agencies that help parents get their child support money. Better investigations of people who are working under the table may help, too, which would be possible with more personnel.
In addition, some experts have pointed out that some parents really cannot afford the requested child support due to job loss, so they just stop paying completely. Though reforming the system to make it easier to reduce child support payments would not help custodial parents, it could help the noncustodial parents avoid serious penalties for not paying. Coming to a compromise, such as reducing the payments temporarily until the noncustodial parent is working again, could be good for both parties.
Whether you owe child support or are owed money from your ex, you will likely need a lawyer to represent your best interests. Call Brian D. Perkin & Associates P.C. when you need a team on your side. We have helped countless clients get the support they needed during their child support case.