Whether your child’s other parent is not paying the support they owe or you have concerns about your ability to stay current on child support, it is imperative to have a clear understanding of your options. Every year, many parents face these challenges, and you could have a number of strategies to address the difficulties you face (such as enforcing or modifying a child support order or establishing a payment plan).
Unfortunately, many parents fall behind on child support obligations. This can create serious repercussions for custodial parents and non-custodial parents. Moreover, data shows how prevalent this problem is.
Statistics on unpaid child support
The U.S. Census Bureau published data on custodial parents and child support. In 2017, more than 25% of kids under 21 had a parent living in another household. In many of these instances, the parent living outside of the child’s home has to pay child support. Moreover, 49% of all custodial parents had a child support agreement (formal or informal) and roughly 30.1% lived in poverty.
During 2017, 69.8% of parents owed support received some payments, but only 45.9% received the full amount of child support owed. Over the course of 2017, custodial parents should have received $30 billion in child support payments, but they only received 62.2% of this amount.
The impact of unpaid child support
When non-custodial parents do not pay child support, it can result in financial hardships for the custodial parent and child. In addition, it can result in serious penalties for the parents who fall behind. If you owe back child support, you could lose your driver’s license and face the threat of arrest and time behind bars, among many other consequences.