Child support and its impact on Texas children

When a non-custodial parent fails to make a child support payment on time, it could put a large strain on custodial parents and their kids. For the average single mother, child support payments made up 39 percent of her income, and child support payments reduced the poverty rate of single mothers by 25 percent. Of the $26 billion in child support that was distributed in 2013, $3,541,224,895 was given to children in the state of Texas.

However, there was another near $11 billion worth of child support in the state that was in arrears. Child support cases in Texas are handled by the Attorney General's Office, and broad powers are granted to the office when dealing with outstanding support cases. For instance, it may be possible for the state to withhold money from a parent's paycheck if payments are not made.

In addition to compelling parents to make payments and distributing those payments, the office is also tasked with establishing paternity when it is disputed. It is also tasked with establishing child support orders as well as medical support orders. When necessary, support orders may be reviewed and adjusted if circumstances warrant. Parents who need assistance obtaining a court order or collecting what they are owed may go online to get the help that they need.

Child support enforcement is possible with help in most states. Therefore, parents who are owed back support from noncustodial parents may wish to seek help from an attorney. An attorney may be able to coordinate with state agencies to compel the other parent to pay what is owed. If there is no existing support order, legal counsel may be able to take steps to ask that one is formally established.

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