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Divorce Q&A: What Do I Do if my Spouse Isn’t Paying Child Support?


All parents love their children but few are happy to pay child support following a divorce trial or settlement. However, to the receiving parent, these expenses are necessary for childcare, basic needs, education, and more.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that some individuals don’t pay child support on time. When this happens, it isn’t worthwhile to go to them and ask them to pay. Instead, you need to pursue a number of other options that will ensure you get the money you need for your children.

Don’t Try to Address the Situation Yourself  

Before we discuss what you should do, it’s important to note what you should not do. We can summarize this in one sentence: Don’t try to address the situation yourself.

All too often, parents think that if they show up to their former spouse’s home and demand the money, they’ll get it. However, this isn’t often the case. Likewise, you shouldn’t withhold parenting time with your children because of delinquent payments. This will only get you in trouble for violating the judgment.

It’s always best to pursue a legal remedy for issues that arise in relation to your judgment. Below, we reveal how you can do so.

Return to Court to Have Support Paid Through the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services 

Some spouses trust each other to pay child support and maintenance without direct deposit via a court order. If you don’t or if your spouse pays you a few months of child support and then fails to do so, it’s best to return to court.

Your Naperville divorce lawyer can enter an order so child support is paid through the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (i.e. the money is withheld from paychecks). More importantly, this means you can have peace of mind knowing that you’ll receive the money you rely on each month to properly care for your children.

Return to Court to Hold Your Spouse in Contempt of Court

If you don’t believe you need to enter a court order for direct deposit through the state, you may still return to court. In doing so, you’ll force your former spouse and his or her attorney to appear before the judge and explain why they’ve been withholding child support.

The judge will either order him or her to pay a fine and will order compliance with the judgment as well.

Contact Lawrence R. Surinak Ltd. for the Child Support You Deserve 

If your spouse isn’t complying with your divorce judgment, Lawrence R. Surinak Ltd. can help. We offer over 35 years of expertise in family and divorce law to ensure a fair outcome to your case or a solution to a specific problem, such as this.

Contact Larry at 630-470-9990 for your free, 30-minute consultation or fill in our simple online form to request a time that best suits your schedule. We look forward to hearing from you and offering our assistance on child support-related matters and any other potential issues in your case.

Concentrated on Family Law

Lawrence R. Surinak Ltd. is a law firm concentrating solely on family law and has served clients in DuPage, Will, Kane, and Kendall counties for over 35 years.

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About Attorney Lawrence R. Surinak Ltd.

Lawrence R. Surinak Ltd. is a law firm concentrating solely on family law and has served clients in DuPage, Will, Kane, and Kendall counties for over 35 years.

We continue to work with clients in Naperville, Wheaton, Lisle, Oswego, Downers Grove, and the surrounding areas to provide one-on-one support and attention that will help you through this difficult time.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at any time. We look forward to offering our expertise and support to you throughout your case and after.