May 15, 2020 | Child Support


Money’s tight and you’re worried about paying the rent or mortgage, keeping your car and putting food on the table. Is skipping a child support payment or two an option?

Not really. Skipping a child support payment is a risky proposition under any circumstances. Parents are generally expected to pay their fair share of support for their children, and skipping a few payments could deprive your child of some essential needs.

Convinced that your ex-spouse can handle a missing payment or two because they’re in a more financially stable position than you are right now? Consider this: Illinois can be very punitive about missing child support payments. Here are some of the ways that the state can come down on “deadbeat” parents:

  • Wage garnishments
  • Liens on your residential or business property
  • Bank account garnishment
  • Claims against your tax returns or other federal payments, including stimulus money
  • Revoking or suspending your driver’s license
  • Revoking or suspending your professional license
  • Denial of your passport
  • Public shaming (by listing you on the “Deadbeat Parent” website maintained by the state
  • Civil contempt of court proceedings
  • Prosecution at either the state or federal level (depending on the circumstances)

In other words: You can’t mess around with child support payments in Illinois.

You know you aren’t actually a “deadbeat parent.” You’re just going through a rough time, financially. If that’s the case, talk to an attorney about asking the court for a modification of your support order based on the change in your financial means. A formal order modifying the support you have to pay will keep you out of trouble with the state and help you overcome this difficult time.