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What if a noncustodial parent fails to pay child support?

On Behalf of | Aug 26, 2014 | Child Support |

It is not uncommon for the circumstances of noncustodial parents in Texas to change. Although most parents want to support their children and remain a part of their lives, nonpayment of child custody often results from a person losing his or her job, serious illness or other legitimate reasons. Unfortunately, an alarming number of noncustodial parents simply refuse to pay child support — often as a way to punish an ex-spouse — but not considering that the children are the ones who suffer the consequences.

Fortunately, the laws of Texas allow enforcement measures that may lead to the collection of regular child support payments, along with outstanding payments that are past-due. These measures include a court order to instruct the noncustodial parent’s employer to withhold the obligated child support from his or her wages. It also allows interception of federal or state income sources such as income tax refunds and winnings from a lottery.

Harsher actions include the filing of liens against any property or assets the noncustodial parent might own, and the suspension of licenses. These may include any professional licenses, driving licenses, along with fishing and hunting licenses. In cases where none of the mentioned measures are successful, a custodial parent may file a lawsuit to request a court-ordered enforcement for the noncustodial parent to pay child support. This may lead to incarceration and a further judgment for outstanding child support payments.

Texas custodial parents whose children are suffering the consequences of their other parent’s failure to pay child support may benefit from obtaining the services of a family law attorney, who could possibly recommend negotiation or mediation rather than court litigation. It might be found that the noncustodial parent’s changed circumstances may allow him or her to apply for modification of the child support amount to be paid. Once a more affordable court order is obtained, the issue may be resolved. Readers should note that this post does not constitute actual legal advice and refers to no particular case, as the circumstances of each case are unique.

Source:, “Texas Attorney General“, , Aug. 23, 2014

Source:, “Texas Attorney General“, , Aug. 23, 2014