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Child support payments total billions in Texas

In Texas, the amount of money that noncustodial parents owe for child support payments is staggering, and it is only increasing with time. For example, in 2008, it was said that the total owed was over $9.3 billion. That number was put out by the Office of Child Support Enforcement. Just four years later, in 2012, the total amount had jumped significantly, and it sat at over $12.1 billion. When looking at percentages, that shows an increase of 30 percent.

A similar increase was shown for the amount of child support cases that were behind in Texas. In 2008, there were 851,823 cases where child support was behind. By 2012, the total had soared to 1,006,568. That is in just four years, so this could show a significant trend if the increase continues over the next four years, as well.

When those who are supposed to be paying child support fail to do so on time, the government can step in and take action. Among other things, they could look into wage garnishment, which is the process of collecting the money before it is paid to a worker. They could also look at taking lottery winnings or intercepting the money that is being sent to the person as a tax refund on the federal level. Outside of just the financial considerations, the person's driver's license and passport could be either suspended or revoked.

As the numbers climb in Texas, it is good for those who are facing divorce to know what options they have when it comes to child support. If the noncustodial spouse does not do their part, the person with the financial burden of raising the children may want to consider his or her legal alternatives.

Source: Valley Morning Star, "Child support back pay increases" Bill Reagan, May. 02, 2014

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