Under Illinois child support laws, parents are often required to make child support payments to provide for their children that live with the other parent. Unfortunately, with the tough economic times many face, retaining a well-paying job and making the required child support payments can be harder than ever.
If a parent is unable to make child support payments due to decreased hours or the loss of employment, he or she has options available to temporarily modify child support payments. Parties in these situations need to understand the proper steps to be taken to modify the support payments in court. Unilaterally modifying support payments without a court order could lead to an overwhelming backlog (arrearage) of payments, a finding of contempt, or even jail time.
Modifying child support payments during unemployment
When someone loses income, the very first move he or she should make is to consult with an attorney to ensure that a petition to modify support is swiftly filed with the court. Modifications of support cannot be made prior to the date of filing the petition to modify support.
Under Illinois child support laws, the amount of child support a parent must pay is based on a percentage of his or her net income. Even parents who do not work at all will often be expected to pay a small amount of money every week to help provide for their children.
Unpaid child support accrues interest, which can quickly add up. Furthermore, it can result in severe penalties, such as:
- Jail time;
- Driver’s license suspension;
- Property liens; and/or
- Withholding state and federal income tax returns.
Do I have to pay child support if I am on unemployment?
Even if you lose your job, you may still be required to make regularly scheduled child support payments. Parents who file for benefits under unemployment insurance benefits (UIB) in Illinois may have their wages garnished by the DCSS.
Lombard child support attorneys
If you owe or receive child support payments and have questions about your case, contact our experienced Lombard child support attorneys at Fay, Farrow & Associates, P.C. for a consultation about your case. Our office has 95 combined years of experience and we dedicate ourselves to helping clients in their times of need. “Our law office serves clients throughout Naperville, Wheaton, Downers Grove, Lombard, Lisle, and Aurora.”