For divorced parents in Georgia and elsewhere, it may be difficult to make monthly child support payments because of unexpected circumstances, such as job loss or a medical emergency. If parents are unable to meet their financial obligations, they may have to file for a child supportmodification. In some severe circumstances, parents who fail to pay their child support obligation may face consequences. Recently, a man owing over $1 million in child support and failing to attend child support hearings has been apprehended and may face serious penalties, including jail or prison time.
A man on the federal list of parents failing to pay child support compiled by the Department of Health and Human Services was arrested in California and faces possible time in jail. According to reports, the man stopped making his required child support payments to his three children with two previous wives and left the country after a child support arrest warrant was issued against him. Federal authorities were able to track the man down in Thailand; he was later arrested in another country for carrying false documents. U.S. authorities subsequently arrested the man at an international airport in United States after he was deported from the Philippines. The man faces prosecution for failing to fulfill his child support obligations after a combined child support enforcement effort by federal and state agencies.
While some parents may find making their child support payments difficult each month, Georgia parents may have several options to modify their monthly obligations. To modify a child support order, a judge must approve or order a change to the initial child support order. The parent requesting the modification may seek an agreement with the other parent to lessen the amount of child support payments, but the requesting parent must still receive a judicial order before the modification may occur. Depending on the circumstances of a case, modifications may be ordered temporarily or permanently. If the original child support included a cost of living adjustment clause, the couple may not need to go before a judge to modify the order.
Sometimes unforeseen circumstances that are out of the control of a parent may make it difficult for the parent to pay the ordered child support. In these times, parents should consider acting quickly and informing the other parent of the changed circumstances and need for modification.