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Can a mother get child support from an illegal immigrant?

Plainfield, IL |

The mother and child live in Illinois and the illegal father lives in Germany. Is it possible for the mother to file for child support if the father is illegal and lives in a different country? He is a resident in Germany?

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Attorney answers 8


My instinct is to answer yes, but I don't see how a judge in the family court in the US can have the power to order someone outside the country to do anything. We are talking enforcement of the American judgement in a German court here.. You'll need to repost this question (that has nothing concering immigration law in it) in the family and/or international sections to get a meaningful answer.

Behar Intl. Counsel 619.234.5962 Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.


I agree with Mr. Behar, but I have to say this: If the father lives in Germany, then he is not currently an "illegal immigrant" - that is to say, an immigrant in the U.S. without legal status (at least, not in the U.S. He could conceivably be an immigrant in Germany, I suppose).

The point is: You can seek a child support award, but extending the jurisdiction of the court to reach him, especially to collect on it, will be a problem.

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I will say yes, although you might face enforcement issues because the father is outside of the US. jurisdiction.

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The mother can file for support but obtaining income information and enforcement of that support will be exremely difficult if not impossible. The father's status is not relevant.


That Illinois court child support order would be unenforceable in Germany as it has no jurisdiction over a person abroad.

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You could get the child support order here conceivably and enforce it if he ever returns to the USA.

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Yes it is possible. You will need the help of a family attorney. The difficulty will be having the award enforced.

The answer provided here is general in nature and does not take into account other factors that may need to be reviewed for a more precise answer. You should consult with an immigration attorney before taking any action. The answer here is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.


Yes you can probably obtain a court order for support if you have any evidence of his income. However, if he blows off the order and doesn't pay, or underpays, you will have a very difficult time enforcing the order. Talk to a lawyer if you want to pursue this.