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


May 15, 2022, In Child Custody

At WHITMARSH FAMILY LAW, PC, our child support attorney in Los Angeles

knows that when parents go their separate ways — whether they were married or not —

their child custody agreement will dictate the amount of financial support the custodial parent receives.

We help our California clients determine how much child support is required to meet their children’s unique needs. Whether the child support amount is agreed upon by the parents in private, during negotiations, or is ordered by a judge, the paying parent is obligated to make those payments in full and on time.

When he or she defaults on their California child support payment obligations, there may be significant repercussions.

What Happens If I Do Not Pay Child Support in California?

California Child Support Services is the state agency responsible for child support enforcement.

However, each California county’s child support office will officially outline its unique consequences if one parent fails to pay.

Common penalties for failing to pay child support in California may include, when applicable:

  • Suspending a driver’s license
  • Intercepting a state or federal tax refund
  • Withholding wages or garnishing unemployment wages
  • Denying passport applications
  • Placing a lien on property
  • Minimizing state disability benefits
  • Recovering a portion of workers’ compensation benefits

When parents who are obligated to pay child support have the means to do so, but do not, they could be charged with a criminal misdemeanor for failing to make the required payments.

Can My Child Support Payment Amount Be Modified?

Our experienced Los Angeles child support attorney knows there are multiple reasons why California parents may fall behind on their court-ordered financial obligations.

Whether they have suffered a job loss, injury, or illness that keeps them from working, the obligation to pay still stands, unless he or she pursues a petition for modification through the family court.

Even if the amendment is ordered, it will not apply to the previous payments that were not made and will only apply to the change in the amount determined by the court going forward.

Contact WHITMARSH FAMILY LAW, PC Today to Schedule a Free Consultation

If you have questions about your existing child support agreement, or how you can pursue a modification, contact our skilled family law attorneys in Los Angeles County at WHITMARSH FAMILY LAW, PC by calling (310) 552-3505 to schedule a free consultation today.

We can help provide solutions that produce results.

Contact Us


Fields marked with an * are required

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

If you are considering a Divorce in Los Angeles, CA, Contact our experienced Attorney Today and Get a Free Consultation.

Give us a call 310-552-3505