How Child Support Can Impact Your New Marriage

Statistically, about half of all first marriages in the United States end in divorce and the divorce rate is even higher for second marriages. Since second marriages are often dealing with child support, ex-husbands and wives, and blended families, this additional stressor (a previous marriage) could play a role in the high rate of divorce in second marriages.

If you’re a parent who is headed toward divorce, or if you’re already divorced but you’re considering remarrying, there are some issues that you should be aware of. Unfortunately, a lot of hopeful couples go into a second marriage without realizing how child support arrears can impact their new marriage – this is especially the case for non-custodial parents who pay child support to their former spouses.

Be Aware of These Setbacks

If you’re a non-custodial parent who is remarried or who may remarry in the future, it’s important to be aware of how child support arrears can impact your second (or third) marriage. We want you to know what could happen since a lot of parents have no idea and the child support arrears ends up hurting their new relationship.

  1. Child support collection agencies are aggressive and have a number of enforcement tools in their toolbox. They will go great lengths to collect past-due child support.
  2. If you fall behind on child support and the arrears reach $2,500, you will be denied a U.S. passport, which means you cannot travel abroad with your new sweetheart.
  3. If your child support arrears reach a certain threshold, your driver license, professional licenses, and occupational licenses will be suspended. This can affect many aspects of your marriage.
  4. If you fall behind on child support, a lien can be placed on your home making it impossible to sell or refinance the house until the child support is caught up.
  5. Your tax refund can be intercepted for child support arrears, which can upset your new spouse.
  6. You can be jailed for contempt of court, which can certainly cause stress in your marriage.
  7. If you have a joint bank account with your spouse, the funds can be seized to pay off child support. This can anger your spouse.
  8. Your wages can be garnished for child support. This can affect your livelihood and again, stress your spouse out.
  9. If you win the lottery, it can be taken for child support.
  10. If you receive unemployment, disability, or workers’ compensation benefits, they can all be taken for past-due child support, which will affect your family’s budget.
  11. If you have 50/50 joint custody, you can still be ordered to pay child support as long as you earn more than your child’s other parent. This can upset your spouse if they thought you wouldn’t have to pay anything.

Next: Does Remarriage End Spousal Support in California?

We hope this post helped you better understand how child support arrears can affect your new marriage. For more information, contact our Orange County family law firm.