On behalf of Cooper & Tanis, P.C. posted in family law on Thursday, December 15, 2016.
Research suggests that absentee parents in Colorado and across the U.S. often have a negative impact on their children’s lives. That’s why many childcare experts say that deadbeat moms and dads shouldn’t be let off the hook when it comes to supporting their children.
With 40 percent of children today being born to unmarried parents, the situation has become even more critical. While some of these parents may get married later on, many do not remain together. Children living with a single parent are more likely to be poor than those living with married parents. If the absentee parent is not paying child support, the custodial parent may not have enough money to make ends meet. Problems can escalate quickly if the custodial parent is working a low-income job and has childcare expenses to pay.
Even when an absentee parent pays child expenses to help the custodial parent gain financial security, it may not be enough. Children generally do better emotionally if they have contact with the non-custodial parent. Conversely, non-custodial parents who have contact with their children are more likely to pay child support. The federal government’s Child Support Enforcement Program provides the resources to help custodial parents collect child support payments.
Less than half the parents today who are eligible for child support have a formal agreement in place. Such an agreement strengthens the custodial parent’s efforts to get the absentee parent to contribute to their child’s support. Non-married custodial parents who do not have an agreement in place may wish to contact a family law attorney who might be able to help draw up a fair agreement.