How can I pursue collection of unpaid child support?

Child support is an obligation. Every parent has a responsibility to provide financially for their child. While all parents should also provide emotionally for their children, the court can only mandate financial care.

Once you have an order for child support, the other parent has a legal obligation to comply with that order. If he or she fails to pay according to the schedule, then you have a few options for how you can handle that. Ideally, you can contact the other parent and work something out, but in many cases, you will have to try another more formal collection option.

The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services explains you have a few options to consider when trying to collect overdue child support.

Traditional collections

You can report the underpayment to the Illinois Comptroller. The comptroller’s office will then report to the credit bureaus, which will damage the parent’s credit score.

You can also file a complaint with the Department of Healthcare and Family Services. The department has a collection and asset recovery unit that will take measures to collect the money for you.

Other options

You also have the right to report to various other agencies that could impact the other parent in a way that would encourage payment or that would help you to get payment. For example, if the other parent holds a professional license, you can make a report with the Department of Professional Regulations. The department may take steps against his or her professional license.

Another option is to report to tax authorities. They can withhold refunds and give them to you to cover the overdue support.

When you have nonpayment of child support, you should act quickly to report it. This will help ensure your child gets payment and prevent the other parent from falling so far behind that it becomes a financial burden. Of course, you can always contact us.