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What are the Consequences of Failing to Pay Child Support in Illinois?

By Nottage and Ward on September 8, 2011

Thousands of parents are jailed each year in the U.S. for failing to pay child support, according to MSNBC.com. Many of these parents have willfully withheld or hid money out of spite or a feeling of injustice. Some, however, have not made the required payments due to financial instability or poverty. Across the country, all non-custodial parents who fail to make their agreed upon child support payments will be subject to the punishments set forth by the laws in their state.

Under the Illinois Non-Support Punishment Act, a person is guilty of a failure to support offense if she or he “willfully, without any lawful excuse, refuses to provide for the support or maintenance of his or her spouse, [knowing] that the spouse is in need of [it] … or, without lawful excuse, deserts or willfully refuses to provide for the support or maintenance of his or her child or children in need of [it] and the person has the ability to provide the support.”

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