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Social Security may be used to pay back child support

On Behalf of | Mar 23, 2015 | Family Law

Some Virginia parents may know it is possible to collect back child support if a court orders withholding of funds from the other parent’s earned income benefits. This depends on whether the individual paying child support collects certain types of Social Security or receives tax refunds.

There are avenues other than wage garnishment that may assist in collecting back child support. For example, if your ex-partner collects Social Security, up to 65 percent of those payments may be garnished. However, Supplemental Security Income payments may not, as it is considered an unearned benefit.

In order to place a claim against an ex-partner’s Social Security payments, an individual may petition the court and must prove that child support payments were not made. The court may then issue an order directing money be withheld from the individual’s Social Security to meet those payments. Once Social Security has received the court order, the information is entered into the system, and payments are directed toward child support. In the event the ex-partner is not currently receiving Social Security benefits, the order is placed on hold until that individual starts collecting.

In addition to Social Security, an individual owed back child support may also receive assistance from the federal or state government to receive money through tax refunds. Individual states also offer child support services to assist in collecting.

Child support is a legal obligation ordered by the court, and there are methods to collect from a parent who may refuse to pay or neglects that duty. An individual who is not receiving child support payments mandated by the court may wish to speak with an attorney. The attorney may structure a petition asking the court for assistance in collecting the previously mandated funds.