No child support payments, no visitation rights?

My ex-husband hasn’t paid child support for a few months now, yet he wants to see his 5 year old son. Can I keep my ex from visiting his son until he pays me child support? I don’t want to use my son as leverage, but I really need the money to keep him fed, clothed, and housed and this seems to be the only real motivator I have at my disposal.

Chicago, IL -

Attorney Answers (4)

David Matthew Gotzh

David Matthew Gotzh

Child Support Lawyer - Chicago, IL
Answered

In Illinois, Support and Parenting time are separate issues. One can't be used as leverage against the other.

Michael J Corbin

Michael J Corbin

Family Law Attorney - Faribault, MN
Answered

Absolutely not. Non-payment of support is not a justification for refusing to follow the court's parenting time order. You can go after him for the money, but you can't keep the child from him.

We can be reached at 507.334.0155. Our web address is: www. corbin-law-office.com. Answers on Avvo are not to... more
Brian Michael Radke

Brian Michael Radke

Family Law Attorney - Chicago, IL
Answered

The court views visitation and child support as mutually exclusive issues. A parent isn't allowed to withhold visitation because child support hasn't been paid and a parent cannot withhold child support because they are not getting visitation. You can file a Contempt Petition against him for non-payment of support. If he is found in contempt the court should order him to pay your reasonable attorney's fees (unless you act as your own lawyer).

This response shall not be construed as specific legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship... more
Judy A. Goldstein

Judy A. Goldstein

Child Support Lawyer - Mokena, IL
Answered

Child support and visitation are two separate concepts and should be kept separate. If you have issues with child support arrearages, bring your ex back to court. His failure to pay could result in his being respnonsible for your fees as well as the back support. You are correct not to use the leverage of withholding visitation. Consult with an experienced family law practitioner. You will need one eventually.

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