If you worry about your ability to pay child support or your ex has fallen behind on their obligations, it is important to review various legal considerations regarding unpaid child support. Back child support can affect many facets of a parent’s life and it is important to review the possibility that missing child support payments could adversely impact a parent in terms of his or her custody rights.
Unpaid child support is often very stressful for all parties and if you fall behind, carefully examine your options.
Does unpaid child support interfere with custody?
The North Carolina Judicial Branch reports that courts take many factors into consideration when making decisions that protect a child’s best interests. In some instances, if a parent misses child support payments, this can influence the court’s decision with respect to a parent’s capacity to act in the best interests of their child. Although your custody rights do not depend on child support payments, they do depend on your relationship with your child and whether you act in their best interests. Therefore, some parents retain custody rights even though they fall behind on child support.
How can you protect your custody rights if you owe back support?
Sometimes, making child support payments is tough, whether you lose your job or face other hardships (such as a health crisis). However, try your best to stay current and review strategies to address back child support (such as modifying your child support order or setting up a payment plan). It is important to show that you are capable of safeguarding your child and prioritizing their best interests.