In Adams County, parents who fail to pay child support may face various sanctions; parents struggling to pay may benefit from seeking modifications.
Child support plays an essential role in ensuring that children are provided for after a divorce. Unfortunately, many parents in Brighton have encountered issues with child support; some recipient parents have found payments inadequate or failed to receive due payments, while some supporting parents have struggled to meet their court-ordered obligations. In many cases, parents can address these issues through formal modifications or enforcement of the child support orders.
Once a child support order has been issued in Adams County, Child Support Services has legal authority to enforce the order through various measures. If a supporting parent has not been making due payments, CSS may directly secure a portion of the money owed through the following actions:
- The offset of state or federal tax refunds
- The interception of lottery winnings
- The withholding of state vendor fees or wages
- The garnishment of incoming wages or funds held in a bank account
- The garnishment of state or federal benefits, such as workers' compensation and unemployment
CSS may additionally take other administrative and civil actions to enforce child support orders. Parents who are delinquent on payments may face passport denial or suspension of driver's, professional and recreational licenses. CSS may also issue liens on the parent's property or report the delinquency to credit reporting agencies. Finally, parents may be found in contempt of court or prosecuted on a federal level.
Parents who fail to pay child support are not protected against these sanctions. If there is a legitimate reason that a parent cannot pay their support, such as income or job loss, they must seek formal modifications to the existing support order.
Both custodial and noncustodial parents may request modifications to existing child support orders if their financial circumstances or the expenses associated with supporting the child have changed significantly. CSS automatically reviews child support orders every 36 months and determines whether adjustments are needed. However, parents may request earlier reviews and modifications.
CSS will only consider a modification if the amount of the new order differs from the amount of the old order by at least 10 percent. Before the review and modification process can begin, parents must provide documentation of their income and expenses. A review and adjustment technician then uses this information, along with official income records, to determine whether modification is appropriate.
Seek legal assistance
Enforcing child support orders or proving that a modification is necessary can be challenging. Unfortunately, delays in either process may have adverse impacts on the children as well as the parent who requested the change. Parents who are facing issues with existing child support orders in Adams County should consider seeking the help of a family law attorney who can provide assistance and advice during the enforcement or modification process.