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Should I volunteer for child support garnishments?

| Nov 10, 2020 | Family Law

Believe it or not, many non-custodial parents in New Jersey and Pennsylvania volunteer to allow courts to garnish their wages for child support payments. You might wonder: why would they do this? Non-custodial parents may prefer this option because they never need to remember to pay it and there are fewer, if any, opportunities for the custodial parent to claim he or she did not receive payment. 

Unfortunately, a lot of child support garnishments occur without the explicit consent of the non-custodial parent. This may cause you to worry about the stigma and how your employer may view the garnishment. However, child support payments remain one of the most common garnishment types. In fact, U.S. News estimates that it accounts for 41.5% of garnishments. 

How much money will you pay?

You and your ex may come to an agreement on how much you need to pay in child support. The court may also consider parenting time and how much money your ex makes when arriving at a final figure. If you do not come to an agreement or the court intervenes for other reasons, you may end up paying as much as 65% of your income in child support. That said, you may not pay anywhere near this figure if you can reach an amicable agreement with your ex. 

Are there any viable alternatives?

Sometimes, couples divorce with no strict child support order in place. If you never married, you may have no order at all regarding child support or your relationship. You may feel tempted to pass cash in hand to your ex but rethink this. Should your ex later allege that you did not contribute financially to your child[ren]’s upbringing, you may need proof. 

Use methods you can track easily, such as direct deposits, money orders and certified checks. Keep all your receipts. 

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