I often have to address this very question and depending on the specific situation the answer will vary. This first reason is simple, if the child is yours then you and the other parent have an obligation to provide for the support and maintenance of the child. There is both a moral and legal duty to provide support for your child.
The problem with child support is often the particular parent’s perspective. Allow me to explain. For the parent who desires child support it is often improperly used as leverage. Have you ever heard, “You want to see your children? Well, you can see them when you pay child support.” This is one of the misguided myths regarding child support. In fact, the recipient parent cannot withhold time-sharing due to the other parent’s failure to provide support and can be sanctioned by the Court for doing so.
It is also frustrating when a parent is providing support and is constantly harassed by the recipient parent that the support amount isn’t enough. Additionally, when a parent is paying support and constantly sees the other parent with recently purchased personal items and the child still needs new shoes the frustration is further magnified. Child support is not only for personal items for the child, but it goes towards the payment of rent/mortgage, gas in the car, electric, car payment, food, etc., all the necessities the child needs to live. However, it can be incredibly difficult for the parent who is obligated to pay child support to deal with the parent receiving support spending funds that appear to be child support funds. If that frustration leads to interrupted or completely cancelled payments of child support, you may face severe consequences.
Failure to pay child support can impact your ability to maintain a Driver’s License, your professional business license (if you have one), interception of your tax refund and even land you in jail. These are serious consequences that should not be ignored. Remember that you should contact an experienced family law attorney to assist you in navigating any issue and answer any questions related to child support. Don’t rely on the advice of those around you, seek a professional opinion today.
For more information on child support issues please contact the law firm of Schwam-Wilcox & Associates.