Tuesday, April 8, 2008

How do I enforce my child support order?

Dear Famularo & Associates:
I am a mother of two children whose divorce was final last year. Their father has no visitation with the kids, because he is too busy with his new life. I have a court order that he is supposed to pay me child support, but he either pays me late, or not at all. Is there any way that I can force him to pay his child support automatically without having to beg him for the money every month? My divorce was in San Diego county, but I now live in Riverside County? Does this make any difference? Do I have to take him back to court to get my money?
-A.R.

Dear A.R.:
If you already have an order for child support, you do not need to go back to courts to get his to pay you. What you need to do is collect the child support you are already owed- both the past due support and future child support. To collect future support, all you need to do is file a wage assignment with the court (it does not require a court appearance, it only requires you to prepare and submit a form to the court for its signature), and then serve it on your ex-husband's employer. The employer must then pay you your child support before your ex-husband gets paid. Collecting the past due child support is a little more complicated and requires the help of a family law lawyer. By the way, because your case was originally filed in San Diego county, you will always return to the same courthouse in that county should you ever need to return to court.

-Famularo & Associates

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