At this time of the year, before the re-opening of schools, authorities make special efforts to collect unpaid support to help custodial parents provide their kids with clothing and school supplies. Similar actions to collect unpaid child support are typically taken in New Jersey in December in anticipation of Christmas. Non-payment of court-ordered child support can make life particularly difficult for children and put additional stress on the custodial parents who may not be able to provide sufficiently on their own.
These efforts are typically joint actions by the New Jersey Division of Family Services and several law enforcement agencies. During the previous crackdown in February, authorities say 1,221 parents were taken into custody for non-payment. Of the $25.4 million that was outstanding on warrants, about $224,088 was collected.
Non-payment of child support sometimes follow unanticipated financial hardships. Non-custodial parents with good intentions to care for their children may suffer costly medical emergencies or job losses which can make it difficult — if not impossible — to pay the court-ordered amounts. However, even paying whatever can be afforded may count in favor of a parent if he or she is arrested.
Struggling New Jersey parents may find comfort in knowing that motions for child support modifications can be filed. With sufficient proof of hardship, a court may agree to lower the amount due. However, the needs of children change as they grow older, and custodial parents are also allowed to ask for more money. Navigating child support modification requests can be a difficult process, but with the guidance of an experienced family law attorney, the court may order a modified amount that will suit the parents while also protecting the interests of the children involved.
Source: nj1015.com, “NJ rounds up 1,221 deadbeat parents owing $25.4M, and they’re about to arrest more“, David Matthau, Aug. 12, 2016