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Child support bench warrant program nets $840,000

Posted by Thomas Pettinicchi of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Sep 11, 2012 in Child Custody

There are penalties associated with not paying child support. In Connecticut, failure to pay child support can lead to garnishment of wages, tax returns and other income; incarceration; liens on property; and even suspension of driver's licenses. States are becoming increasingly aggressive about collecting child support because of the impact it has on the custodial parents and the tax payers.

Parents who are unable to pay child support because of unemployment or other extenuating circumstances should make an effort to learn their rights under Connecticut law. They may need to petition the court for a child support modification order. The courts can also help settle any child support dispute the non-custodial parent may have with the custodial parent. Whatever they do, they should not just stop paying child support or they may find themselves on the wrong side of the law.

Like Connecticut, New Mexico is going after parents who are delinquent in their child support payments. On Aug. 16, they launched the child support bench warrant program, and approximately 79 people have been arrested so far for failure to pay child support. The program has prompted another 84 parents to come forward during the amnesty period and begin paying their child support. The state has collected more than $830,000 in outstanding support payments so far. With the success of New Mexico's program, maybe Connecticut will continue to explore different options for effectively collecting unpaid child support.

It can be difficult fulfilling the requirements of a child support order during these tough economic times. But there are laws on the books that can help parents manage their child support obligations. Speaking to an attorney is a good way to learn about the options available.

Source:, "N.M. goes after people with unpaid child support, collects thousands and arrests dozens," Samantha Manning, Sept. 10, 2012

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