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Many parents do not receive child support in the United States

Residents of Minnesota may agree that divorce is especially complicated for a couple with children. The parents may have to decide on child custody, visitation plans and child support. Although these are different issues, they are linked to one another. Emotional disturbance and financial needs may change perspectives for each spouse. While the child custody order may ensure that the child gets the benefit of being raised by both parents, a child support order helps the custodial parent take care of the child's financial needs.

There may be various issues involved, however, that force things to not go as smooth as planned for both the child and the parents. Some parents fail to pay child support for a significant time while the other parent faces financial problems in raising the child. Even though the custodial parent may not have enough money, they may have second thoughts about taking the matter to the court, believing it may affect the child. The parent may think that a child of a young age may not be able to understand the necessity of the child support amounts and may be troubled by seeing the parents in court. However, while trying to raise the child without claiming court-ordered child support, financial conditions may continue to deteriorate for the custodial parent.

Throughout the country, many parents fail to pay child support every year. The U.S. Census Bureau released a report last year that showed that more than $14 billion in child support was not given to custodial parents in 2011. Only 43 percent of parents received the child support payments due to them. Most of the custodial parents in the country are women, with many living in poverty. It was also stated that in 2012, just over 26 percent of custodial parents had contacted a government office, including the child support enforcement office, for assistance with child support.

It is important that the person makes the payments on time, as any person who does not make child support payments may be arrested. In cases where the child support amount is high and a job loss or pay cut makes it impossible for the payments to be made, the parent may ask for a child support modification. This may enable the parent to make payment adjustments and pay a new amount for the upbringing of the child without facing serious consequences.

Source: The Washington Post, "Things can get ugly when family and money mix, especially over child support," Michelle Singletary, July 12, 2014

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