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Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.

Child support delinquency rate approaches 40 percent

We recently reported that unpaid child support in Texas amounts to approximately $11 billion. We now find the delinquency rate for child support in one particular Texas County is at 39 percent. This percentage matched a number of other Texas counties as well, and there are some counties that the rate is even higher.

The Texas Attorney General's office has cracked down on delinquent payments in recent years by placing those delinquent in jail, and by putting offenders that cross state lines into federal prison. However, the office has also provided services to assist individuals in finding alternate ways of coming up with money to pay their child support obligations.

Unfortunately, a number of individuals that do not cover their child support obligations are repeat offenders. Many of these offenders have not learned their lesson and have been returned to jail more than once. So far, the state has refused to close any cases simply because the debt is so long overdue.

There is hope in that the number of cases has decreased over the years. Programs have now been available to provide non-custodial parents with job skills that allow them to hold onto jobs and, hopefully, allow them to make their child support payments.

Obviously, the state cannot handle every case because of the sheer number of individuals behind in payments. Under those circumstances, attorneys can help provide individual representation to parents owed child support. These same attorneys can also have individuals find resources that will assist them meet other needs as well.

Source: News-Journal, "Gregg County child support delinquency rate at 39 percent," by Glenn Evans, Oct. 18, 2012

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