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Falling behind in child support payments can add up quickly

When a marriage or relationship ends, it can be an unfortunate occurrence, particularly if children are involved. Most parents here in Florida want to do whatever it takes to care for their children, whether they remain in a relationship with the other parent or not. If a parent's financial situation changes, it can be difficult to continue paying child support. If a parent falls behind, it can spiral out of control very quickly, as one recent out-of-state case illustrates.

A father in Minnesota was arrested recently for his outstanding child support payments. He and his ex wife divorced in 2000. At that time, courts ordered him to pay $780 a month in child support, which he did until falling behind in those payments three years later. Though he attempted to continue paying, he was unable to catch up with the payments he owed, and the amount finally ballooned to nearly $114 thousand, including court fines; he was ultimately taken into custody.

Though he knew a warrant had been issued for his arrest, he did not turn himself in. The man was taken into custody and in jail for three days, but he has been allowed a medical furlough. Authorities have said he will be taken back to jail when he has completed treatment at a local hospital. This was not the first time a warrant had been issued for his arrest due to his overdue child support payments. His ex wife has stated that she has not received any payments from him since 2014.

If a parent here in Florida finds that a change in his or her finances will make it difficult to honor a current child support agreement, he or she could have the agreement modified. An attorney who has experience in this area can advise a parent of all of his or her legal rights and responsibilities. Ultimately, doing what is best for the child or children in question is the top priority, and parents have options to ensure that they can give them the best care possible.

Source: Northwest Herald, "Former Crystal Lake man jailed for owing nearly $114K in child support", Brenda Schory, Dec. 28, 2018

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