When raising their children apart, the courts often order non-custodial parents to pay child support. Most people willingly comply with such orders, fulfilling their financial responsibilities to their kids. Due to the loss of a job, a sudden and extended illness, or other factors, however, parents sometimes cannot keep up with their court-ordered payments.
If parents fall behind on their support obligations, the state’s division of child support services has several enforcement options it may take.
According to the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services, to enforce child support orders, DCSS may collect owed amounts through fund intercepts. To this end, the state may divert state and federal income tax refunds, lottery winnings and other state payments, and casino or racetrack winnings and apply those funds to parent’s arrears.
Property and asset liens
According to the Illinois attorney general, the state’s enforcement actions include placing property and asset liens. Placing liens against the real estate, personal property and certain financial accounts of nonpaying parents affects their ability to sell, transfer and otherwise access these holdings.
When people owe past-due child support, DCSS may request the suspension of certain licensures. This includes driver’s licenses, as well as professional licenses, occupational certificates and recreational licenses. Until they have resolved their arrears, then, parents with such suspensions may not have the ability to drive, work, or participate in activities like hunting and fishing.
To avoid facing these or other child support enforcement actions, parents should uphold their award obligations. If issues arise that change their circumstances, people may consider options for modifying their financial responsibilities.