No one wants to find him or herself in the position of unemployment. Unfortunately, many Utah residents have little control over whether they face layoffs at work or otherwise lose their job due to circumstances beyond their control. Of course, many financial obligations do not pause because of unemployment, and that includes child support.
If a parent who pays child support loses his or her job, it is not an option to simply stop making those payments. If this does happen, that parent could face serious repercussions for failure to pay. In some cases, that could mean a parent facing jail time for failing to comply with a court order. Even if a parent does not face this sentence, he or she would still be obligated to make up any missed payment, which could come with fines and other penalties.
It may be possible for some parents to obtain unemployment pay, some of which could go toward support payments, but not every parent gets this benefit. If ineligible, parents may want to contact the family law court about their situation. If parents continue to look for a new job and can provide documentation of the job search, the court may show them some leniency.
Because circumstances can change, Utah parents may want to keep in mind that they could seek modifications of their child support order. In cases of job loss, presenting a case to the court as to why the payment amount should be lowered or suspended temporarily may be necessary. In order to gain more information on this type of scenario, concerned parties may want to speak with experienced family law attorneys.