Wage Garnishment Options for Unpaid Child Support in Illinois

wage garnishment, unpaid support, Illinois family lawyerThe battle for child support does not always end in the courtroom. In some cases, after child support is determined by the court, the non-custodial parent refuses to pay the expected amount. This defiance of a court agreement can cause the custodial parent financial strain and emotional trauma as he or she attempts to recover the required support payments.

Wage Garnishment an Important Tool

Though the Illinois Public Aid Code authorizes the state to post the photographs and names of those parents who owe more than $5,000 in support payments, and though a list of the most egregious offenders is kept up by the Illinois Child Support Services, much of the monies for support payments are still not collected. Therefore, a solution must be found, such as direct wage garnishment. While this tool is especially effective, family law attorneys need to be aware of the new stipulations enacted by the Illinois Supreme Court regarding procedures for notices of garnishment.

Wage Garnishment Notices Must Satisfy All Requirements to be Enforceable

When filing a notice to obtain child support payments through direct wage garnishment, there are specific expectations that need to be met in each notice. Any notice that is out of compliance with these expectations is subject to employers not garnishing wages. Necessary elements of each notice include:

  • The withholding amount, inclusive of any fees incurred;
  • The date the order was entered;
  • As well as the penalties if the obligor does not meet expectations; and
  • And the correct Social Security number of the obligor.

An example of how specificity is important is Schulz v. Performance Lighting, Inc. In this case, the obligee’s attorney did not include the correct Social Security number of the obligor. The employer did not garnish wages for two years and was taken to court to determine if the employer is liable for not following through with the withholding notice, if the notice was not completed correctly. When the case went to the Illinois Supreme Court, it was found that employers are not obligated to follow through with withholding notices that were incorrectly completed and/or filed.

If you need legal counsel regarding an important legal matter such as utilizing wage garnishment as a tool to satisfy unpaid child support, please contact our office today for a consultation with a DuPage County family law attorney. When seeking to file a wage garnishment notice, working with a child support attorney who is experienced with Illinois child support cases and laws, and has extensive attention to detail, will be important for ensuring that your request is filed correctly and is enforceable.

 

Sources:

http://www.deadbeatsillinois.com/

https://newhire.hfs.illinois.gov/NewHireWeb/IncomeWithholding.jsp

http://www.isba.org/ibj/2014/01/lawpulse/supremecourtrequiresstrictcomplianc

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