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What could happen if one stops paying child support?

Parents who are struggling to keep up with their child support obligations are encouraged to speak with family law attorneys. In some cases, an Arizona parent may request a modification to his child support obligation that may reduce the amount he is required to pay or may change the terms of the order or agreement to make repayment more feasible for the non-custodial parent. The failure of a parent to pay child support can result in significant legal penalties being taken against him.

For example, when a parent falls behind on his support payments, the child's custodial parent can seek enforcement of the agreement or order. Enforcement efforts can include garnishing the paying parent's wages and income or even placing a lien on any real property that he owns.

More drastic steps may be taken that could affect the paying parent's financial health further into the future. In some cases, a paying parent's bank accounts may be frozen, so he may not remove any money from them until his past due child support payments are made. Additionally, a parent responsible for child support may have his child support debts reported to a credit bureau and as a result may see a reduction in his credit score and capacity to apply for additional credit-based accounts.

Significant legal penalties may be assigned to parents who do not pay their child support obligations. Findings of contempt, removal of one's driving privileges and even imprisonment may result from stopping payment on one's child support commitments.

Most parents who fail to pay their child support responsibilities do not mean to fall into delinquency. Many need help making a plan to stay current on the financial obligations that they have to their kids. Family law attorneys can work with individuals who wish to better understand their options for modifying their child support orders and agreements.

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