Do I Need a Lawyer to Establish or Enforce a Child Support Order?
You can also hire a lawyer in private practice to help you establish and/or enforce a child support order. This can be particularly wise when you not only have child support issues with your ex, but you also are having other problems with your ex that concern your child. While federal law requires that state and local child support agencies assist you in establishing and/or enforcing a child support order, you need to remember that these agencies deal strictly with child support, and not with any other issues concerning your child for which you might need help. Issues such as child custody and visitation are extraordinarily important to you, your ex, and most of all, your child, and often must be dealt with through the court system. For these types of issues, you are well advised to hire a lawyer who specializes in family law matters.
Whether you are working with a private lawyer or a lawyer from a child support agency, he or she will guide you through the often complex process of filing the appropriate paperwork with the court system in order to get a child support order. A lawyer can help you locate your ex, properly and legally serve your ex with notice that you want a child support order, and document any income that your ex receives. A lawyer can also help you determine what financial information you need in order to properly calculate a child support obligation for your ex. Calculating child support is often rather complicated, as well, and can require the use of specialized software programs.
Once a child support is established, it can be difficult for some parents to enforce it. If your ex won’t pay his or her child support, your only way to enforce the order is through your local child support office or your court system. Again, either a private lawyer or a child support office can help you with enforcement of your child support order. Both types of lawyers can obtain garnishment orders if your ex is employed, or file contempt of court proceedings against your ex for not following the court’s child support order. Other remedies include intercepting tax refunds, placing holds on passports, and entering liens against vehicles and real estate. A lawyer is helpful in pursuing any of these enforcement remedies.
The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.
Additional Child Support Articles
- Understanding Child Support
- Calculating Child Support
- Enforcing a Child Support Order
- Enforcing a Child Support Order Out of State
- How to Modify a Child Support Order
- Intercepting Tax Refunds When a Parent Fails to Pay Child Support
- Can Child Support Payments be Automatically deducted from a Parent's Paycheck?
- Do I Have to Pay Child Support if I Don't Get to See My Children?
- Child Support FAQ
- What Is Child Support?
- What Is Child Support Used For?
- When Can A Child Support Order Be Changed Or Modified?
- How Long Must Child Support Be Paid?
- What Other Items Do Formulas Consider?
- My Husband And I Have Decided To Use Artificial Insemination To Have A Child. Will The Donor Be Obligated To Support The Child?
- Can The Parent Limit The Amount Of Future Child Support That Is To Be Paid To The Other (Custodial) Parent?
- Can One Parent Be Ordered To Pay Child Support Even If She Never Married The Other (Custodial) Parent?
- I'm Marrying A Man Who Has Children From A Previous Marriage. He Regularly Pays His Child Support. Since I Earn More Than My Fiance, Am I Held Responsible?
- If The Obligor Parent Doesn't Pay, Can Visitation Be Stopped?
- My Wife Has Threatened To File For Bankruptcy. What Effect Does Bankruptcy Have On Child Support?
- My Income Dropped Dramatically When I Was Laid Of My Job And Cannot Make My Child Support Payments. Is There Anyway I Can Lower My Child Support Payments?
- What Efforts Can Be Taken To Collect Child Support From The Parent Who Does Not Pay?
- What If The Obligee Does Not Spend Any Money On The Child?
- What Is The Parent Locater Service?
- What Other Collection Remedies Are Available?
- What Effect Does Bankruptcy Have On Child Support?
- What Is Child Support, And How Is Child Support Determined?
- What Factors Are Used To Calculate Child Support Payments? Can The Amount Of The Payment Change Over Time?
- Is A Father Who Never Married The Mother Still Required To Pay Child Support? What If The Father Is Not Allowed To See The Child?
- What Happens To A Father Who Refuses To Pay Court Ordered Child Support?
- Does Every State Follow The Same Formula In Calculating Child Support?
- Can A Child Support Order Be Changed Or Modified?
- My Ex Is Not Making Child Support Payments – What Can I Do?
- How Is Child Support Ordered And What Exactly Is It?
- When May Maintenance And Support Be Awarded By A Court?
- Can the amount of support payments be changed?