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Steps to take if your ex-spouse refuses to pay child support

Because child support plays such an important role in a child's overall well-being, it can be concerning if your ex-spouse decides that they will no longer pay child support.
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    February 12, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- After divorce, raising a child in Wake County can seem overwhelming due to the many expenses associated with childcare. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in 2012, it was estimated that raising a child from the time they are born to when they turn 18 costs $234,000. The report stated that the largest expenditures related to raising a child included housing, education, food, transportation and healthcare. While this number may seem high, it is expected that this number will continue to rise.

The purpose of child support

To help newly single parents financially with raising a child following divorce, child support may be paid to the parent that has full custody of the child. Ultimately, child support has three main goals:
- To reduce poverty and financial uncertainty among parents with sole custody.
- To prevent single parents from entering into the welfare system.
- To increase the amount of involvement a non-custodial parent has in their child's life.

Not only can child support help with these things, but according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, studies have shown that child support can also have a positive effect on a child's academic and cognitive development.

Strategies to try

Because child support plays such an important role in a child's overall well-being, it can be concerning if your ex-spouse decides that they will no longer pay child support. If this occurs, try and keep your child's other parent involved in their life as much as possible. While it may be easy to punish the parent for not paying child support by limiting the amount of time they get with their child, keeping them involved will help them stay invested in your child's life and make them more willing to pay.

One of the reasons that your ex-spouse may be unwilling to pay child support is because they cannot afford it. If your ex-spouse reveals this to you, ask them for a portion of what they owe. While you shouldn't completely let your ex-spouse off the hook, receiving some of what they owe is better than nothing.

If your spouse is still unwilling to pay, you should contact a local attorney or your local child support enforcement office. There is a child support enforcement office in every county in North Carolina. They will start the Court process for you in order to get the Court to order that child support be paid to you. The child support order can impose wage withholding on the party ordered to pay support. If they fail to pay after being court ordered sanctions against them may include the taking away or suspending a professional license, garnishing their wages and even taking them to jail.

Unfortunately, even the threat of jail may not convince your ex-spouse to make their support payments. If this is the case, contact an attorney in your area that can help you know which steps to take next in regards to obtaining the child support that your child deserves.

Article provided by Breeden Law
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