I have missed my child support court appearance this morning
Q) I have missed my child support court appearance this morning because I mistakenly thought it was next month! I am trying to find out what to do from here to hopefully not be arrested over this.
A) First of all, it’s important to stay calm and take action as soon as possible. Missing a court appearance can have serious consequences, but there are steps you can take to mitigate the situation.
If you missed your court appearance, the other parent may still get a default order for child support. The child support enforcement agency can then use this order to begin garnishing the non-custodial parent’s wages. Default orders are not preferred and can raise potential due process arguments.
It is usually in the non-custodial parent’s best interest to appear in court to challenge the child support case. If the parent does not appear in court and a default order is entered, child support may still be taken out and payments may be due back to birth if this is when the petition was filed.
If a default judgment is entered, the non-custodial parent may be able to get the court to vacate this order. However, this is often difficult and may rely on the non-custodial parent providing justification for not appearing at the scheduled court date
Missing a court appearance can have serious consequences, but there are steps you can take to mitigate the situation.:
- Contact the court: Call the courthouse as soon as possible and explain your situation. Let them know that you missed your court appearance and that you want to reschedule. Ask if there is a warrant out for your arrest and if there are any other steps you need to take to avoid being arrested.
- Hire an attorney: If you can afford it, hire an attorney who specializes in family law or criminal defense. They can help you navigate the legal system and advise you on the best course of action.
- Attend your rescheduled court appearance: Make sure to attend your rescheduled court appearance on time and be prepared to explain your absence. If you have a valid reason for missing the original court date, such as a medical emergency or a scheduling conflict, be sure to bring any documentation that supports your claim.
- Pay any outstanding child support: If you owe child support, make sure to pay any outstanding amount as soon as possible. This can show the court that you are taking responsibility for your obligations.
- Cooperate with the court: Be cooperative with the court and follow any orders or instructions given to you. This can help demonstrate that you are taking your obligations seriously and working to resolve the situation.
Remember, it’s important to take action as soon as possible to minimize any potential consequences. Contact the court and seek legal advice if necessary to ensure that you are taking the appropriate steps to resolve the situation.