Child support in the United States

From wikilawschool.org. Wiki Law School does not provide legal advice. For educational purposes only.

Regardless of the marital status, refusal to pay child support can result in both civil & criminal contempt.

Crime[edit | edit source]

While state agencies address non-payment of child support, there exist federal statutes criminalizing refusal to pay child support. According to 18 U.S. Code § 228, non-payment of a legal child support obligation is a criminal offense. To meet the criminal threshold, the back child support amount must exceed $5,000 (as of 2023) 18 U.S.C. § 228 (a)(1).

Cooperation among states[edit | edit source]

Inter-state enforcement of child support is laid out in federal code: 42 U.S.C. § 666(a)(9)(B).

Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA)[edit | edit source]

Under Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA 2008), if either parent still resides in the state that issued a child-support order, then only the state which issued the order has the jurisdiction to modify it.

Cases[edit | edit source]