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Help for parents struggling to collect child support in Illinois

In many cases, child support is the only way for custodial parents to provide for their child. It is an important source of support for many children of divorced parents. Paying it is an essential obligation that is not only court-ordered but can carry major consequences if not upheld.

For residents of Illinois, child support orders are typically enforced by state law. However, in certain circumstances, these orders can be prescribed by federal law. Parents under court order to pay child support may face major consequences if in default. The Illinois court can take some steps to solicit or even force parents to make good on their child support obligation.

Although there are several things the Illinois courts can do to solicit child support payments from parents, some of the most typical are wage garnishment, fines and community service. Criminal punishment and jail time are among the more serious penalties handed down by the Illinois court but are usually reserved for individuals that are unwilling to pay child support for more than six months.

Of course, there are certain situations which may make it difficult for noncustodial parents to meet their child support obligation. However, if a noncustodial parent can pay child support but refuses to, custodial parents may seek help through their local child support agency or an attorney. A local child support agency may take steps to investigate and solicit child support arrearages.

These agencies may choose to intercept tax refunds, place liens against property and suspend the noncustodial parent's driver's license until the arrearages are paid. If custodial parents are concerned that their child's other parent is unable to pay child support, they may want to work with a family law attorney to modify the court order. This process can help both parents and the child involved by taking steps to keep child support current and manageable.

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Goddard & Malmquist
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