It is a common misconception that once an Illinois child support order is finalized, it is set in stone and cannot be changed. While it is true that many child support decisions do not change until a child becomes an adult or finishes college, it is also true that support orders can be changed. Illinois courts prefer to stand behind their decisions, but you can modify the order if you have reasonable requests and ample justifications.
When a parent falls behind on child support payments, the government has ways to help the custodial parent to get that money. For example, if someone is overdue on child support and then wins a significant amount of money at a local casino, the authorities can step in and collect those winnings. According to a news report in The Chicago Sun Times, The Child Support Intercept program collected over $120,000 in gambling winnings from delinquent parents since it began in the fall of 2014.
The Child Support Intercept program is a coordinated joint effort between the Illinois Gaming Board and the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. They have the authority to intercept winnings once they become aware that someone who owes money on child support has earned enough to fill out a W2G tax form. A specified maximum is withheld after taxes and that amount can be sent to the family.
Non-payment of court ordered child support judgments in Illinois is treated seriously and can lead to serious consequences. If a parent does not pay child support, he or she is subject to enforcement measures according to Illinois and federal child support laws in order to collect both regular and past-due payments.
In Illinois, there is no longer a statute of limitations on back child support payments. Prior to July 1, 1997, Illinois law imposed a 20-year statute of limitations on collection of past-due child support. In 2000, Illinois law imposed statutory interest on past due installments of child support.
In order to receive financial aid for college, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form must be completed and submitted online. The form requests information about a young person’s financial support mechanism and amount. Child support from a non-custodial parent must be included on the form with the rest of the family’s financial information. Then a determination can be made as to the amount of financial aid colleges should make available.
The Chicago family law attorneys at Nottage and Ward have been helping spouses and former spouses with the financial complexities of divorce for more than 20 years. They help spouses resolve complex custody and financial issues.
Divorce is an emotional time, but even in the midst of all the stress, divorcing parents want what is best for their children. The divorce process can become contentious and the presence of children in a marriage should be enough to encourage both spouses to take the rational approach toward settling differences.
In Illinois, in order to establish a child support order, the non-custodial parent’s net income and the number of children he or she is responsible for determine the amount of child support. Under Illinois Statutory Guidelines 750 ILCS 5/505 Section 505, the minimum amount of child supported ordered is as follows:
Both parents should want the best for their children after a divorce. Unfortunately the truth is that hundreds of Cook County parents fail to pay court-ordered child support. The Cook County Sherriff’s office has created a website where the public can gain access to publicly available information regarding those individuals for whom child support warrants have been issued. At www3.cookcountysheriff.org, the persons listed on the database have, or have had in the past, warrants for their arrests in the Circuit Court of Cook County.
Purpose of Public Access
The purpose of allowing citizens access to this database, including subjects who have outstanding child support warrants, is to make Cook County residents aware of persons considered wanted within the community. The website serves as a way for citizens to provide information that might lead to knowledge of the offenders’ whereabouts.
Former NBA player Dennis Rodman, now 51-years-old, continues to face legal issues relating to his ex-wife, according to the Chicago Tribune. Most recently, a California court extended a restraining order against Rodman, who is ordered to keep away from his ex-wife; she testified that he had appeared suddenly at her apartment, drunk, and began pounding on the door and being obnoxious and loud. This recent decision doesn’t end the post-marital issues, however.
Rodman and his ex-wife have been in an ongoing court battle over unpaid child support payments which, according to his ex-wife’s attorneys, total approximately $800,000. During a hearing concerning these outstanding payments, Rodman was asked by his ex-wife’s attorney if he had received legal papers related to the child support case and he had replied by admitting that he hasn’t opened his own mail in the last 16 years.
In the celebrity world of divorce, alimony and child support, everything is on a grander scale due to the exorbitant salaries and lifestyles of the rich and famous. This fact is perfectly demonstrated by a recent news article in NewsOne.com, which states that Hollywood actress Halle Berry has been ordered to pay her French-Canadian model ex-boyfriend $20,000 a month in child support for their daughter Nahla, now four years old.
Berry and Aubry had met in 2005 while Aubry was modeling on a photo shoot. Nahla was born in 2008 and then the couple ended their relationship two years later. Since then, they have been involved in an ongoing court battle, first to recognize Aubry’s paternity and then onto child custody and support. Tensions between the couple had increased amidst allegations that Aubry endangered their daughter’s health and safety in connection with an incident involving the child’s nanny, whom Aubry allegedly pushed into a wall while she was holding Nahla. Child endangerment charges were dropped due to lack of evidence.
In Monday’s blog post, we discussed the shortcomings of the current Illinois child support system, as reported by the Chicago Tribune. This child support payment system may make the family court’s job easier, but it can make things tougher and more frustrating for families.
The new income shares system aims to be more centered on the particular situation of the family. The income shares system still assumes that the child of a divorced couple is entitled to financial support equal to that he/she would have received if his/her parents stayed together. But, unlike the current system, this would be determined by how much each parent earns. Higher income means higher child support contribution. The amount of time a non-custodial parent spends with the child will also be taken into account. With the added level of fairness in this new system, long and contentious disputes would likely take less of the court’s time and alleviate any bitterness between the parents.
Child custody and support are two of the most contentious aspects of a divorce and can lead to ongoing bitter disputes that are definitely not in the best interests of the child. Illinois aims to remedy these common situations by implementing a new child support payment system, which will be better for all parties. In this two-part blog series, we will be discussing the shortcomings of the current system and the remedies of the new system.
According to the Chicago Tribune, an advisory committee to the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services is supporting a complete reconstruction of the state’s child support payment system, which really does not allow for the best arrangement, for parents or children, in its current state. A bill is being drafted to change the current system to an income shares system, a trend that is already in place in 38 states.
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