Many Ohio residents who are under an order to pay child support do not have a clear understanding of the consequences they will face if they fail to meet their payments. They may not understand that the state may withhold their income to help make up for delinquent payments.
Under Ohio law, all cases are subject to income withholding. This means that a judge can order a portion of your income to be withheld and sent to the custodial parent. But a judicial order is not necessary to have part of your income held from you. This withholding can also be mandated through an administrative process. Therefore, it is important for you to stay up to date on your payments. If you are unable to do so, then it might be prudent for you to seek modification of the amount of support you owe.
Modification may be possible if you have experienced a life change. For example, if you develop a medical condition or lose your job, then you might be able to lessen the amount you owe. It is worth noting, though, that if your income increases significantly, then your child's other parent may be able to modify the agreement to increase the amount you owe.
So what counts as income for child support and withholding purposes? "Income" has a far-reaching definition. Any monetary payment is counted towards your income, including workers' compensation, pensions, disability pay, lottery winnings, and insurance proceeds. To get a clear sense of how much you might owe or how much you may be able to modify your arrangement, you should be sure to assess all of your income.
The divorce process can be filled with disputes, ranging from child custody and property division to child support and alimony. With so many issues, there is a lot to consider and a lot to fight for. For this reason, it is often in people's best interests to speak through their legal matters with an experienced family law attorney.
Source: Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, "Income Withholding Overview," accessed on Mar. 30, 2015