Using a Lawyer to Collect Child Support

You can use your lawyer to collect child support. You should get fast, personal service, and you’re likely to get good results. This comes at a price, however, in the form of the attorney’s fee.Custodial parents all over the world have been using lawyers to collect child support for decades, and for good reason. Attorneys understand the local laws and customs in the courts where they practice. They hold the key to full access to the legal system for the protection of custodial parents, and they serve their clients effectively.

Maria couldn’t be happier with the results she got when she and I went to court to get child support from Dad. For about 12 years, Dad had been dictating to her what he would and wouldn’t pay, constantly micromanaging her financial decisions about redecorating, medical care, sports, and even where she should have telephones in her house. She was embarrassed that he continued to hold such power over her, but she just put up with it. Interestingly, had he stopped there, it’s possible she would never have come to see me. When he started deducting from child support for the gifts he provided to the children, though, she had enough.

The court struggle took awhile, and Maria had to endure the almost inevitable argument from Dad that the court should transfer custody to him, but her patience paid off. Dad is now paying an additional amount each month toward an agreed child support arrearage of more than $21,000.

The problem with Maria’s decision is that it wouldn’t have made financial sense had her arrearage not been so large. She ended up paying me a fee of close to $2,000 — easy to justify for her arrearage, but much more difficult had she only been talking about $3,000 to $4,000. Maria could have used social services to collect the same amount, and she would have paid far less to do it. So using a lawyer is worth considering, but make sure you think strategically as you consider it.

Okay, Lee, now tell me about other options to collect child support.