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Child support debt is growing for low-income families

On Behalf of | Feb 4, 2022 | Family Law

Whether divorced parents share custody of their children or one parent has primary custody, generally all parents provide love, care and support for their children. However, that is certainly not always the way it ends up. Parents in Florida and in the rest of the United States often fall behind in child support payments and end up in debt to the state.

When one parent falls behind in making child support payments, the other parent may have to take public assistance benefits to fill the gap. When this happens, states such as Florida try to get the other parent to cover the cost of these benefits.

Florida will make sure that the debt is paid in one form or another, such as through fees and fines. It may also enforce delinquent child support orders by suspending a parent’s driver’s license,  or even sentencing them to time in jail.

Of course, once these enforcement actions go into place, the parent can’t earn money to pay back their delinquent child support. It becomes a vicious cycle.

The law is enforced with little flexibility

In Florida, the rules that govern child support enforcement are tough. Throughout the United States, over the last 30 years, child support debt has increased by 10 times to over $115 billion. Florida alone contributes $6 billion of that amount. Sadly, the greater portion of the debt is the responsibility of poor families, who have little or no ability to pay. Sadly, it is not just a matter of being unable to pay the initial debt. That debt will keep growing over time and those parents find themselves in a financial hole that keeps getting bigger.

Solid legal counsel and support

If you find yourself in such a situation, a knowledgeable child support lawyer may be able to offer you invaluable advice, which will help you to make decisions that are in the best interest of your child. The lawyer will walk you through the process and stay with you until a resolution has been reached. You will want to ensure that your child has what they deserve and need to live a happy, fulfilled life.

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