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Child Support

If you are the parent owing child support, there is a word of caution if you intend on using the inability to secure employment as your reason for nonpayment.  The recent job market is an acceptable reason but only for a recent episode of nonpayment.  If you have a history or arrearage of child support from the past, a judge will most likely not accept this reason when a contempt petition is filed.  Once the custodial parent files a contempt petition for nonpayment of child support, the best advice is to begin payment as much and as often as you can do so.  If you need to apply at local fast food places or sell your property such as cars, trucks or collectibles, you should do so.   This would be the best plan rather than come into court and argue that you are unable to secure employment.  Your past history of nonpayment will work against that argument.  If there is a child support arrearage from your past, a judge will most likely incarcerate you until the arrearage can be paid or a substantial payment can be made on it.

It is the custodial parent's obligation to file contempt on the nonpaying parent.  Once the allegation is made that child support is not being paid, the only defense is inability to pay.  However inability to pay must be a recent event.  If you just lost your job or became disabled in some way, then inability to pay will be a good argument to make in any contempt hearing.  Judges look to your past performance to determine whether you are really facing a new development in your employment status to warrant the defense of inability to pay.  Children have a constitutional right to be supported by both parents and that is reason child support becomes due upon divorce or legal separation of the parents.  A parent who does not pay their child support may cause the child to suffer due to the lack of funds for their living expenses.  The most common areas a child may suffer is extra curricular activities such as sports or dance.  If the custodial parent is not receiving support from the other parent, these options may be available to the child.

Here at The Zwiebel Law Firm we take child support cases very seriously.  Whether you are in need of support or whether you need representation because of child support that is due, we have plans to cure each issue.  We work together with custodial parents and noncustodial parents to get child support issues worked at to the best possible outcome for each parent.  Call us today at 205-623-1001.  We are here to help.

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The Zwiebel Law Firm, LLC

826 Columbiana Road
Birmingham, AL 35209

Phone: (205) 623-1001
Fax: (205) 874-9481

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