The idea of being served with orders to pay child support can be daunting for any Florida parent. Legally, if payments are missed, consequences can be enacted upon the parent. These can range from suspension of a driver’s license to fines and even jail time. These same factors have many Florida parents protesting the laws regarding child support and missed payments.
Many Florida parents believe that the punishments that come along with missed child support payments are ineffective, and they are letting their voices be heard. When a driver’s license is suspended, a parent may not be able to get to work daily in order to make money to put toward child support payments. Once this occurs, there is little that can be done by the parent, and the vicious cycle of nonpayment simply continues.
In addition to possible suspension of a driver’s license, an individual may face incarceration for failing to pay child support. If the back pay the parent owes for child support is not paid in full, he or she could face up to 179 days in jail for lack of payment. Being incarcerated doesn’t mean that child support is not still expected — it is. Each payment that is missed is just added on to the account of the parent who owes child support.
Many Florida parents protesting believe that the child support system is unfair and may set some up to fail from the beginning. It can be extremely disheartening for parents who want to help support their children to know that they may be facing an amount of child support that is unrealistic, depending on their current job salary. However, some may benefit from petitioning the court for a modification in support payments if they can show that their financial circumstances warrant such a change.
Source: highlandstoday.com, “Protests held to highlight child support laws, hearing abuses, organizers say”, Pallavi Agarwal, April 11, 2014