In a Texas divorce where children are involved, there are child custody and child support issues to work through. Many parents try to avoid paying child support because once it is taken out of their paycheck, they are left with very little. Jail time is an option that is used to punish those who fail to pay child support, although it is not as frequently used as wage garnishment. One Ohio man was recently jailed for refusing to follow a court order to pay child support.
The man owes approximately $100,000. He was given until Oct. 16 to pay $1,700. By that time, the man had paid only $100, and the court decided to put him in jail. He was sentenced to 30 days but will still need to pay the child support tab once he is released.
The judge also made a controversial order - he asked the man to not have any children until he pays the money owed for supporting his four children. The man's attorney is currently fighting this order, stating that it violates the man's right to procreate. The 9th District Court of Appeals is reviewing the case.
Child support is a difficult issue to enforce because people find ways to get around it. Judges often come up with creative orders and punishments in order to get delinquent parents to pay up.
For those who are struggling to make child support payments, it's best to contact the local agency and work out a payment plan instead of trying to avoid the situation altogether. Judges will often be more lenient toward someone who has made the effort to support their child.
The Chronicle-Telegram, "Man jailed for not paying child support" No author given, Oct. 24, 2013