If you are going through a divorce and you share minor children with your spouse, your divorce case will include the allocation of parental responsibilities and a child support determination. Under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA), courts use an “income shares” model to determine the child support obligation. Under this method, both parents are responsible for paying a portion of the child support obligation based on their individual income and other factors such as the total number of overnights for which they provide caretaking functions for the child. With the income shares model, the court combines both parents’ incomes and uses that figure to determine the total child support obligation based on the Illinois guidelines. Then, each parent is responsible for paying a percentage of that total obligation.
Many different situations can arise that can result in a parent being unable to pay his or her portion of the child support obligation, but it is critical to understand that failure to pay child support can have serious consequences. Whenever you have questions or concerns about child support, you should seek advice from a DuPage County family lawyer to ensure that you are not subject to penalties under Illinois law.
Penalties for Failure to Pay Child Support
The IMDMA clarifies that there are serious penalties if either parent fails to pay his or her portion of the child support obligation. The first step, according to the IMDMA, is to hold the non-paying parent in contempt. Once the court finds the non-paying parent to be guilty of contempt, the court can also impose the following penalties:...