What Happens If You Fail To Pay Child Support In Utah?

Posted on 02-23-2016 by
Tags: Family Law , attorney , divorce , Trending News & Topics , child support , lawyer , law

Child support orders are supposed to be based on a formula that results in a fair determination for both the parent receiving support and the parent paying support. However, even if the court carefully considered your income and expenses when issuing the order, that does not mean that you may not experience difficulty in making your payments at some point in time. Unexpected events such as an illness, injury, or loss of a job can suddenly render you unable to cover your bills, basic expenses, and your child support all at once.


In such a situation, you may be tempted to stop making child support payments--at least temporarily. However, you should realize there can be serious consequences for individuals who fail to make their ordered payments and you should instead discuss your options with an experienced divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City. If you do default on your child support payments, the following is some information regarding penalties you may face.


Penalties For Missing Child Support Payments In Utah

There are many different consequences for failing to pay court-ordered child support. These consequences can be set and enforced by either the family court overseeing your initial case or by the Utah Office of Recovery Services (ORS), which is the agency charged with child support enforcement in our state. Child support enforcement tactics can include the following and more:


  • Holding you in contempt of court;
  • Issuing a judgment against you for the unpaid amount, which may be reported on your credit and can lower your credit score;
  • Garnishing your wages;
  • Placing a levy on your bank account;
  • Seizing of your property;
  • Intercepting part or all of your tax refund;
  • Suspension of your driver’s license;
  • Suspension of a business or professional license; and
  • Criminal charges for nonsupport, which can result in probation, jail time, and a serious conviction on your permanent record.


Many of the above consequences can only make your financial situation worse.


Consider A Modification Of The Support Order

If you are unable to pay child support because you have experienced a substantial change in circumstances, the law allows you to request a modification of the original child support order. The court will then reevaluate your income and expenses and can change the support order if deemed necessary. It is imperative to have the representation of an experienced child support attorney during any modification case. An attorney can ensure you properly present your change in circumstances and prove to the court the need for a modification so that you will not risk the consequences of nonpayment.


Discuss Your Situation With A Family Law Attorney In Salt Lake City

Child support is taken very seriously by domestic litigation law in Utah. If you are struggling to pay child support or believe you require a child support order modification due to a substantial change in circumstances, you should not delay in contacting a Salt Lake City law firm for child support help.

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