Even with the authority of the Connecticut court system bearing down on them, not every parent who is subject to a child support order follows through on their obligations. Whether it is due to intentional noncompliance, a sudden loss of income, or simple forgetfulness, failure to pay child support on time can have serious consequences.
However, it can be very difficult for parents who are dependent on those payments to enforce the terms of their support order, especially if they try to do so without help from a qualified New Haven child support enforcement lawyer. The guidance of a well-versed child support attorney may be key to resolving this kind of issue as quickly and smoothly as possible, potentially without even needing to go to court.
Getting a local court to enforce a child support order often requires filing a Motion for Contempt, which is a secondary court order that holds a delinquent individual “in contempt” of the previous one and forces them to provide the necessary payments or face financial and even criminal sanctions. In a child support enforcement case, the burden of proof always falls on the person pursuing the motion—in other words, if someone seeking overdue child support does not successfully prove their case, the court will do nothing to enforce the order.
More specifically, the petitioner must show that all the following criteria apply in their situation:
A knowledgeable New Haven attorney could offer more clarification about how child support enforcement petitions and hearings work.
Importantly, jumping straight to a Motion for Contempt may not be the best way to resolve missed child support payments. In some situations, it may be sufficient to speak with the delinquent parent in private or send them a demand letter drafted with the help of a child support enforcement lawyer. If they missed payments because of serious financial issues, a petition for a modification to an existing support order might resolve the issue without the need for contempt proceedings.
Alternatively, eligible families could take advantage of the Connecticut Child Support Enforcement Program’s assistance in addressing problems with support payments and long-term financial obligations. Legal counsel can explain this option in more detail and help determine whether it may be appropriate in a particular situation.
The court will not step in and force a delinquent payor to fulfill their obligations unless the payee takes action and forces their hand. For this reason, it is in your best interests to work with our attorneys when attempting to enforce your child support order.
Having a New Haven child support enforcement lawyer on your side may substantially improve your chances of getting the payments you are owed without too much additional stress or legal trouble. Call today to schedule a meeting with one of our team members.