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What are the Consequences of Not Paying Child Support in Oklahoma?

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After a divorce or child custody order, one parent is deemed the custodial parent, and the other the non-custodial parent. The non-custodial parent must pay child support to the other parent if ordered to do so. not paying child support

Not paying child support obligations can have a huge impact on your life and severe consequences. If your spouse is not paying child support or you are ordered to court because you aren’t paying child support, it is a very wise and necessary decision to hire a child support attorney, so your rights and your case are protected.


There are several well known consequences for failure to pay child support in Oklahoma. These include:

  • Wage garnishment – an order to your employer to withhold a certain amount of income from your paycheck
  • Federal and state taxes may be seized and garnished
  • Liens can be placed on your home or property you own
  • You may be added to Oklahoma’s Child Support Enforcement database and most wanted list
  • Various licenses suspended, including business licenses, driver’s licenses, professional licenses, etc.
  • Registration on your car, boat, motorcycle, airplane, etc., can be suspended
  • Passport denied or not issued
  • Found guilty of contempt of court and serve jail time

Response to Non-Payment

Oklahoma has a program called Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), which provides aid in the amount of approximately 21 million dollars every year. About 80 percent of the families receiving this aid are also families not receiving court-ordered child support.

A federal act was put in place to aid families in seeking recovery of child support if the other parent tried to flee the state of Oklahoma called the Uniform Reciprocal Child Support Enforcement Act. This program assists state agencies in finding and prosecuting absent parents.

In addition, the Department of Human Services (DHS) assists families where one parent is not fulfilling their child support obligation. In Tulsa, there is a separate office located in the city where the primary focus is to help families get the child support they deserve. The office is made up of attorneys that prosecute the parent failing to pay support.

Failing to pay child support is also a criminal offense. Even though the state has attorneys who prosecute parents not paying child support, it is very important to have your own attorney in the family court field.

It is equally important to have a child support attorney if you have failed to keep up on your child support payments. Your attorney is more skilled at navigating the family court system and working with other family law attorneys and judges.

Unfortunately, if a family is not already registered with the AFDC, they have a harder time accessing assistance. The AFDC contracts with the DHS when child support is not paid. There is essentially a direct line to prosecutors this way. It is helpful for families to register with this organization for a more efficient and quick response.

Free Consultation with a Tulsa Child Custody Attorney

It is vital to remember three important additional points:

  1. If your spouse stops paying child support, you cannot withhold your child from court-ordered visitation with the other parent. Although both orders appear in the same divorce decree, they are not one in the same. You must go back to court to modify visitation to change it.
  2. Once you and your attorney appear in court to handle the non-payment of child support, the offending spouse rarely doesn’t have to pay back child support, this is almost always part of the new child support order.
  3. The spouse paying (or, not paying in this instance) does not get to decide how child support funds are spent.

Hiring an experienced child support attorney will ensure the process is expertly conducted and your interests are well represented whether you are behind on paying child support, or you are not receiving your court ordered support.

Contact an experienced Tulsa family law attorney when you need to go through the Oklahoma relocation process.

For a free confidential consultation, call now: 918-924-5526.


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