When parents are going through a divorce, it is always a tough time for a child, both emotionally and financially. To ensure that the child is not affected by the divorce, federal and state authorities have enacted laws that give courts the authority to decide how a child will be raised and who will financially support the child.

State authorities are responsible for the enforcement of child support orders. This child support may be paid weekly or monthly, as directed by the court. Child support orders may also include provisions for the payment of health insurance or the payment of reasonable and necessary medical expenses for the child.

If one parent fails to pay child support, state authorities have various ways to enforce the child support orders. If the parent is having trouble making the child support payments, they must provide evidence to the court that issued the original child support order of their inability to pay. If the court agrees that the parent cannot make the payments as ordered, a new order will be made.

If a parent fails to make the payments, authorities may collect the money that is owed through various ways. These actions will have an effect on the parent’s finances, mobility, and public record. These actions may include: suspending the non-paying parent’s drivers license; denying them a passport; having liens placed on their property; reporting child support debts to credit bureaus; intercepting state or federal income tax refunds; and sending income withholding notices to the parent’s employer. Authorities may ask the employer to withhold the parent’s wages or other income and have it sent directly to the department to pay past-due support.