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Ohio family law: Child support Q and A, part III

Numerous parents who are ordered to pay child support find themselves unable to keep up with their financial obligations. Monetary issues happen, it is just a part of life for a lot of people. However, not paying child support is not an option according to the state. Ohio family law allows for enforcement options to be used in order to collect child support from those parents who are behind on their payments. This week's column will address questions some non-custodial parents may have about support enforcement.

Question number one is: Can the Child Support Enforcement Agency take money from Social Security benefits to pay arrears? Yes, it is possible. It all depends on the type of SS benefits one receives. SS Income cannot be garnished to pay child support, but SS Disability and SS Retirement benefits are subject to garnishment for the purpose of paying arrears.

Question number two is: Can the CSEA take work bonuses in order to pay child support? Yes. Employers are required by law to inform the CSEA of any bonuses higher than $150. Upon that report, if one is behind on his or her obligation, the CSEA can have the funds directed directly to the custodial parent.

Question number three is: What happens if one is unemployed? Loss of employment is something that many people experience. If this happens, the court can issue something called a seek work order. This means that one will be given so much time to find a new job or seek public assistance.

Question number four is: What other enforcement options can the state utilize? There are so many options for the state to try to collect child support. Some of these include:

  • Wage garnishment
  • License suspension
  • Tax interception
  • Jail time
  • Credit reporting
  • Most wanted poster program

When it comes to child support enforcement, the state takes collecting seriously. No child should be without the financial support he or she needs. Those who are struggling to meet their obligations can take action before enforcement options come into play, however. For example, seeking a support modification can be a great way to deal with the situation. An Ohio family law attorney can assist in filing the necessary legal documents to help parents achieve support orders that fit their current economic situations.

Source: jfs.ohio.gov, "Child Support Enforcement Questions and Answers", Accessed on April 30, 2017

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