On behalf of Cooper & Tanis, P.C. posted in family law on Thursday, March 2, 2017.
A study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family indicates that there are several commonalities among non-custodial fathers who don’t pay child support regularly or on time. Child support payments are often required of people who do not live with their children, and it is supposed to help single parents pay for things like food, clothing and shelter.
Researchers discovered that fathers who pay child support are more likely to be educated, work more on average and will usually spend more time with their children. Fathers who were not paying or were behind on child support worked, on average, five weeks a year fewer than those who were current on payments. Additionally, those who were behind on child support were more likely to be incarcerated or have children with other partners.
Fathers who were behind on payments tended to also spend less time with their children. On average, they spent three fewer days a month with their children than those who paid support on time. Further, they were less likely to spend time with children doing things like reading, helping with homework or playing with their kids outside. They were also less likely to provide in-kind support, such as clothing and school supplies.
Family law offers a number of ways for parents to seek child support from individuals who are not making their payments in a timely manner or at all. People may be able to obtain court orders that require nonpaying parents to start paying or they may face penalties such as being denied a driver’s license, having their wages garnished or even facing jail time. A lawyer could explain what the process is for petitioning the court.