COVID has affected much of the world, financially and emotionally. When the country shut down for a few weeks, many people lost their jobs. Even people who were able to hold on to their jobs had to learn how to navigate a new world of increasing cases and the challenge of figuring out remote schooling.
If you rely on child support during this time, it can make the situation even worse when your ex stops paying. You may have legal options available to enforce your ex to make their payments. Failing to make court-ordered payments is illegal in New Jersey and is usually enforceable by the local court.
Modifications Can Help to Accommodate a Change in Finances
If your ex loses their job during this time, or their income significantly decreases, they can file for a modification. Filing for a modification requests that the court recalculates their child support payments based on their new income. Without this process, however, your ex can’t just skip payments or reduce them.
What to Do If Your Ex Stops Paying
One of the first things you’ll want to do if your ex has skipped a few payments is to report the missed payments. You can report missed payments to the Office of Child Support Services (OCSS). If your ex intentionally skipped payments and has income, the office may obtain payments using other methods, like garnishing their wages or a tax refund.
Other Potential Consequences of Non-Payment
If your ex skips their child support payments, they may be ordered to pay them through garnishments. If they don’t have a job that allows this, or still don’t pay the full amount of their monthly child support, the court may take other actions for further consequences. A few potential consequences include:
- Suspend their driver’s license
- Suspend a professional license
- Put a lien on a personal property
- Detain them
There are a few options available for seeking child support. If you find that these methods are still ineffective, it may be worth it to reach out to a child support lawyer. A lawyer can help you file the right paperwork with the right courts and ensure that they have all the information they need to track down payment.
What if My Spouse is Collecting Unemployment?
The year 2020 saw a record number of people collecting unemployment. Even if your ex is collecting unemployment, they are still responsible for making their child support payments. The same goes for other types of government compensation, including workers’ compensation payments or other disability payments.
A divorce or family lawyer can help you navigate child support during this difficult time. It can feel impossible to get answers to your questions, especially with many of the courts closed to the public. This can lead to a longer wait time for court hearings. In the meantime, you’re left trying to cover the costs of being a parent, without the additional payments from your ex that you deserve and rely on. Contact us today to navigate child support during COVID.
Contact a Cherry Hill Family Law Attorney for a Consultation About Child Custody in New Jersey Today
If you are thinking about filing for divorce, or if you have already started the divorce process and are dealing with another matter such as child custody, child support, or division of assets, you need to speak with a qualified attorney. The New Jersey family law attorneys at The Law Offices of Daniel K. Newman represent clients throughout the state, including Cherry Hill, Winslow, Collingswood, and Voorhees. We understand how challenging this time can be for you, which is why we will fight hard to protect your interests, and the interests of your loved ones, throughout the legal process. Call us at (856) 309-9007 or fill out our confidential contact form to schedule a consultation. We have an office conveniently located at 1202 Laurel Oak Rd #207 Voorhees Township, NJ 08043.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.