My husband has been paying child support for his 4 year old son for about 2 or 3 years now. When he put himself on child support the mother was not letting him see the boy. He moved to another county and got a job. He was later let go and he was no longer able to pay his child support. He has been unemployed for over a year now and his payments added up to a huge amount. He still has a problem with the mother and visitation. She says since he's not up to date with his payments he can not see his son. He also has another younger baby who he is responsible for as well. Can he try to fight to clear the back pay he owes for his child support since he has not been working? Sould the district attorney have sent something or noticed he wasnt working? Why would they let the same amount be taken out if he is unemployed? If he wants to fight for custody for his son will his back pay on child support affect him fighting?
You husband may be tossed in jail if he does not pay and the mother takes him to court. He can clear the back pay by paying it off. He had better make every effort to get additional jobs, any jobs he can, to meet the obligations to the children he is fathering or the system, when it catches up with what they call 'dead beat dads' can be harsh. Losing a job does NOT wipe out arrears owed.
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Unless he is disabled and thus unable to work or incarcerated, then the Court will order him to pay child support. Even if he were disabled, the Court would set child support based on his disability income. If he worked in the oil industry and thus the downturn prevents him from finding new employment with the same pay, he should have filed for a modification immediately. The other parent can release the debt if it is owed to her and not the state as TANF or medicaid reimbursement, but a court can only modify an order back to the date when the other party was served with the modification. There is an exception to this rule referred to as possession and access credits, but that does not apply in this situation. Your husband should obtain the best job that he can and get a modification filed and served on the child's mother. He can then demonstrate his income and at least prevent this problem from spiraling more out of control. He needs to make whatever payments he can. Even if he just pays $25.00 a week, he is at least showing the Court that he is trying to pay something. If the mother files an enforcement and he has paid nothing in the last year then the Court is not going to be pleased with your husband.
In regards to the mother denying visitation, your husband could file an enforcement against the mother similar to the enforcement that he would face for not paying support. Failure to pay child support does not enable a party to deny the other visitation. If the two enforcements were on file and the modification with the Court, attorney's fees would probably accrue rapidly. Beyond all this, the Court is going to be annoyed with both parents.
This answer does not constitute legal advice. An attorney should be consulted to provide legal advice to your specific situation based on a fuller understanding of the facts.
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