Q) My ex-husband has a good job and is willing to have the payments deducted from his paycheck, but his employer won’t do it. What can I do?
A) If your ex-husband’s employer does not have an established system for income withholding, there are several steps you can take to try to enforce child support payments.
First, you can ask your ex-husband to make payments directly to you on a regular basis, whether that be weekly or monthly. You can keep a record of these payments and make sure they are documented in case you need to prove in court that he has made payments.
If your ex-husband is not willing to make payments voluntarily, you may need to seek legal assistance to get a court order for income withholding. You can work with your local child support enforcement agency or hire an attorney to help you petition the court for an income withholding order. The court order would require your ex-husband’s employer to withhold a certain amount from his paycheck and send it directly to you or to the state child support agency.
It is also worth noting that some employers may require a court order before they will begin income withholding, even if they have the capability to do so. In this case, you will need to work with your attorney or child support enforcement agency to obtain the necessary court order.
NOTE: Under every state’s law, an employer must withhold the support if ordered to, or if the noncustodial parent requests it. If you run into problems with an employer, seek the assistance of your child support office. The state child support agency staff will send the employer a withholding notice, which is binding on the employer. An employer who fails to withhold the income in accordance with the notice is liable for the accumulated amount that should have been withheld from the noncustodial parent’s income. Employers who have questions about income withholding can find information and contacts on the Office of Child Support Enforcement website: www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/css/employers/employer-contact-program-information