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DuPage County child support attorneyMany parents do not realize the amount of money it actually takes to raise a child. When child support payments become a part of your monthly expenses, you may find yourself in a financial predicament. Child support is designed to help a child with unmarried or divorced unmarried parents to enjoy the same quality of life that he or she would have with married parents. In Illinois, child support amounts are determined by analyzing each parent’s income, employment, health, and other factors. If you cannot afford your court-ordered child support, read on to learn about what your next steps should be.

Never Stop Child Support Payments Without Notification

Illinois takes child support nonpayment very seriously. If you cannot afford your child support, never simply stop payments. Missing payments or paying only partial amounts can result in significant negative consequences. Parents who fail to pay their support payments in Illinois can have their wages or bank accounts garnished, tax returns intercepted, a lien placed against their property, and their driver’s license suspended or revoked. In severe cases of child support nonpayment, parents can face passport denial and even criminal prosecution. Parents who own $5000 or more in past-due support can also have their name and photograph posted on the “Illinois Deadbeat Parent” website.

File a Request for a Child Support Modification

If you are a parent who cannot afford your current support obligation, your first step should be to notify the person who receives your support. Next, file a “Petition to Modify Support,” with the county court. Modifications to child support obligations are only granted if there is a good reason for the court to change the order.


DuPage County Family Law Attorneys

When a judge creates a child support order, the payments must arrive every month until the child reaches adulthood or is emancipated, adopted by a stepparent, or joins the U.S. military. 

Life circumstances often change. People gain and lose employment, marry, and divorce, and health fluctuates up and down, all of which can have a significant impact on the financial well-being of a household. For many divorced parents, it is likely that at some point during the duration of child support payments, the order may require child support modification.


child support, unpaid support, Illinois Family LawyerThe State of Illinois faces a serious problem in collecting child support from delinquent parents. There is currently over $3 billion in overdue child support payments, and with just 58% of child support payments collected by the State, that number is likely to continue growing.

Parents have an obligation to their children to support them financially, even if the child’s parents are divorced. The State of Illinois calculates the amount of a parent’s income that should be paid to their child through child support based on a set of legislative guidelines that considers the number of children for which the parent is responsible.

State Guidelines for Support Determination

These guidelines stipulate that 20 percent of a parent’s net income should be paid to their child in support if they are only responsible for one child. If the parent has two children, then the State requires them to pay 28 percent of their net income in support of their children. The amount increases for each child, up to an expected payment of 50 percent of the parent's net income for six or more children. The court may alter the exact amounts depending on the specific circumstances of each case. Factors including, but not limited to, custody arrangement between the parents may be taken into account to determine the amount of child support a parent will be required to pay. “Most Wanted” Delinquent Parents In the event that a parent becomes delinquent on support payments, the State may take a number of actions against the parent, including publicly disclosing their name and image if they owe more than $5,000 in payments. The State has even created a list of the “most wanted” parents behind on child support. Variety of Collection Means Utilized

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