Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C.
High Point Plaza, 4415 West Harrison Street, Suite 213, Hillside, IL 60162
High Point Plaza, 4415 West Harrison Street, Suite 213
Hillside, IL 60162



UPDATE: What Happens When Child Support Becomes Past Due in Illinois?

 Posted on July 26, 2023 in Post-Decree Matters

Oak Park IL family law attorneyOriginally published: May 27, 2021 -- Updated: July 24, 2023

Update: As discussed below, there are a number of methods that may be used to enforce child support obligations and collect payments that are past due. However, parents should also understand when child support obligations may be modified based on changes that have occurred that have affected a person’s ability to make ongoing payments.

While Illinois courts take steps to ensure that both parents are contributing toward their children’s financial needs, they also recognize that circumstances may arise that could affect a person’s ability to support themselves while making these payments. If a parent who is required to pay child support experiences a change in circumstances that affects their ability to meet their obligations, they may request a modification of their child support order. For example, the loss of a job may affect a parent’s ability to make payments, and they may be able to have their obligations temporarily reduced until they can find new employment. 

Any modification requests must be made in good faith. A parent cannot quit their job in order to reduce their child support obligations, and if the court determines that they are voluntarily unemployed, their modification request may be denied. If necessary, child support obligations may be based on a parent’s “imputed” income, which is the amount that they should be able to earn based on their education, skills, and employment history.

It is also important to note that child support obligations will remain in place until a modification request is approved. Even if a parent has lost their job and does not have the resources to make continuing payments, they will be required to abide by their existing child support order. If they miss any child support payments, they will be required to pay the past-due amounts, and interest may accrue until the amounts owed have been paid in full. However, if the court approves a modification request, the changes may be retroactive to the date that the petition for modification was filed.


Contact Our Hillside Child Support Modification Attorney 

When parents experience financial difficulties, this may affect their ability to provide financial support for their children, and they may need to take steps to modify child support orders. At the same time, a parent who receives child support will want to make sure they will have the financial resources to meet their children’s needs, and they may need to enforce existing child support orders. At Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C., our Oak Park child support lawyer can help parents determine the best ways to address these issues. We can assist with modification requests or the enforcement of court orders, and we will work to ensure that children’s best interests are protected when these matters are addressed in family courts. To discuss these issues in a free consultation, contact our firm at 708-449-7404.

In Illinois, parents are legally required to provide financial support for their children until they turn 18 or graduate from high school, whichever comes later. When parents are no longer in a romantic relationship, even the smallest of child support issues can lead to major conflict. There are many reasons why a parent may be behind on child support payments, but when they miss payments purposefully, there are certain things the other parent can do to try to recover the missing amount.



Notification of Delinquency

One option when the other parent is not paying support is to notify the Illinois Division of Child Support Services (DCSS). After receiving notice, the DCSS will begin to monitor the paying parent’s account. Before any actions can be taken, however, the DCSS must first notify the non-compliant parent of the delinquent status of their account and the resulting actions the Division may take. This allows the non-compliant parent a chance to explain why their payments are overdue and to confirm whether the amount due is correct.

Potential Remedies for Late Child Support Payments

If the paying parent is subsequently notified that DCSS action is going to be taken against them, DCSS can use several methods of recovering support for unpaid obligations, including:

  • Intercepting federal and/or state income tax refunds if the parent owes more than $500

  • Intercepting other state payments, such as lottery winnings

  • Intercepting casino or racetrack gambling winnings

  • Placing liens on property

  • Seizing the parent’s bank accounts

  • Submitting the delinquency to collections agencies

  • Requesting the denial or revocation of the parent’s professional, occupational or recreational licenses

  • Requesting that the parent’s driver’s license be suspended

  • Publishing the parent’s name, photo and past due child support amount on the DCSS Delinquent Parents Website.

Enforcing Child Support Through the Court

Another option for collecting child support involves asking the court to hold your child’s other parent in contempt of their child support order. If you choose to go this route, hiring a child support enforcement attorney can be greatly beneficial throughout the process. A child support order is legally enforceable, meaning a parent can face penalties if they do not abide by its terms, including fines, court costs, and even imprisonment.

If the judge finds that your child’s other parent willfully withheld the support payments, they can charge them with a Class A misdemeanor, or even a Class 4 felony, depending on the details surrounding the case. This means the other parent could face jail time and expensive fines, on top of the delinquent support owed. Your attorney can also ask for the other parent’s wages to be garnished, or for other remedies similar to those available through DCSS.

Contact an Oak Park, IL Child Support Lawyer Today

Sometimes the circumstances that cause a parent to fall behind on child support payments can be outside of their control. However, if a parent has the means to pay support and they choose not to, they can face various legal consequences. At the Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C., we can help you if you have had difficulty recovering unpaid child support from the other parent, or if you are facing any penalties for unpaid child support. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your options with a Hillside, IL child support attorney, call our office today at 708-449-7404.



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