Most parents willingly comply with court orders requiring them to pay support for the care and maintenance of their children after a divorce. However, the loss of a job, a demotion or other changes in their earning statuses may affect their ability to keep up with their payments. Without acting to modify their support orders or making other arrangements, parents who fall behind on their child support may face a range of enforcement actions.
According to the Attorney General of Texas, the Office of the Attorney General enforces child support orders in the state. The office may take any number of actions in order to collect arrears or hold delinquent parents accountable, including filing liens on their property or assets. The OAG may file liens on bank accounts, life insurance plans, retirement plans, insurance settlements or awards, personal injury claims, real properties and other assets due to failure to pay child support.
By law, the OAG must report delinquent child support payments to the credit reporting agencies. The office provides details on the amounts owed and any amounts paid. The effects of this action, for example, may include lowering parents’ credit scores, which may impair their ability to secure loans or other lines of financing.
According to FindLaw.com, parents who fall behind on their child support may also face a driver’s license suspension, or the suspension or denied renewal of their professional or recreational licenses. This may include, for instance, licenses to practice medicine or other professional services, hunting licenses and fishing permits. The OAG may take this action in cases when parents owe at least three months of past-due support and have not entered and complied with a court-ordered or voluntary repayment schedule.