If your spouse was ordered to pay child support after a divorce, collecting it can present special issues. An Austin child support lawyer can explain a variety of legal options available to you.
Basic Enforcement of a Child Support Order
As your Austin child support lawyer can explain, when a child support order is signed by the judge, it becomes a legally enforceable document. In the event the payor fails or refuses to pay the money owed, the payee can take steps to go after the money.
Income Withholding Orders
The most desirable collection tool for a payee spouse is the income withholding order. If signed along with the support order, this allows the child support to come directly out of the payor spouse’s pay check each week or month.
If an income withholding order was not entered, the payee spouse may then pursue garnishment of the payor spouse’s wages separately. The issue here is if the obligated spouse does not earn a traditional pay check. If the spouse is paid in cash or “under the table”, a garnishment may not be appropriate. Your attorney can discuss options such as garnishing a payor spouse’s bank accounts.
Contempt of Court and Other Legal Remedies
If wage garnishment or income withholding is not viable in your case, an Austin child support lawyer can discuss other more aggressive tactics. Remember, child support is a legally enforceable court order. As such, if the payor spouse does not comply with it, he or she may be subject to contempt of court. If the court finds the payor in contempt, they may be assessed additional fines and costs or even face jail time. In some states, the judge may also revoke the payor spouse’s driver’s license until the support payments are brought up to date.
When Child Support Should Be Recalculated
If you feel your support order does not accurately reflect the payor’s current income, speak to an Austin child support attorney. Support can be reviewed and a new order may be appropriate. The payor should report income increases or other changes but this doesn’t always happen.
An Austin child support lawyer can review your case and help you decide on the best options for pursuing back due support. To make an appointment for an initial consultation, call the offices of Nunis & Associates at (512) 236-9696.