Are Immigrants Entitled to Child Support in Illinois?

Divorce can quickly turn into an ugly situation. Couples who split up often fight about how best to divide their marital assets and split up parenting time of their shared children. One of the most difficult aspects of any divorce is the issue of child support. Child support can be ordered from either parent and is designed to provide for and protect the best interests of the children involved. Child support amounts can vary widely and are determined through an analysis of the paying parent’s financial situation, other dependents, and other factors.

Immigrants and Child Support in Illinois

A major issue that has come to light in recent years is that of immigrants seeking to divorce in the state. Are immigrants entitled to the same laws and protections as other citizens? Are immigrants entitled to child support in the state of Illinois? Let’s examine that question below:

According to, a parent is responsible to pay child support regardless of their immigration status. This makes a great deal of sense, after all, because a child is both parents’ financial responsibility regardless of citizenship status. The real challenge, therefore, may not be obtaining an order for child support, but rather enforcing that order against a spouse who chooses not to comply.

Child Support Enforcement and Immigration Law

There are now multiple agencies and government departments designed to aid and assist with child support cases regardless of immigration status. The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services, for example, can not only assist any parent with obtaining a child support order but can also assist in the enforcement of that order. Not only can the department help collect current payments, but it can also assist in collecting past due payments owed. It may use a variety of methods to do so, including the following:

  • Passport denial
  • Credit agency reporting
  • Liens
  • License denial or suspension
  • Court hearing
  • Tax offset intercept
  • Collection of unemployment benefits

An Illinois Child Support Lawyer Can Help

Illinois state law on child support exists to make sure that children’s needs are provided for by both of their parents. Do not be afraid to utilize the state’s assistance programs to obtain child support orders or money owed to you. It is, after all, in the best interest of the child.

Navigating the state’s legal system may appear very intimidating, however, and some may choose to avoid doing so. This can be a critical error, however. To help ensure you protect your rights, whether you are a legal immigrant or not, consult with an experienced child custody attorney in Chicago. You can visit us online at or give us a call any time. Our friendly and professional staff is here to help and will answer any questions you may have or direct you to the attorney that specializes in your type of case.