How Garnishment Withholding Is Calculated in Child Support

How Garnishment Withholding Is Calculated in Child Support

By: Gordon & Perlut, LLC

Child support may be ordered as part of a divorce, in legal proceedings when unmarried couples split up, or as a result of a paternity case. These payments help ensure your child’s needs are provided for and offset basic living costs, such as housing, food, clothing, health care, and educational expenses. Unfortunately, despite having a court order in place, some parents still refuse to pay, make late payments, or otherwise do not pay the full amount of child support owed.

In these types of cases, our Chicago area child support attorneys help to ensure this debt is paid. We can guide you in enforcement actions, which include having the other parent’s Social Security benefits garnished.

Enforcing Child Support In the Chicago Area

Parents have a legal duty and a moral obligation to provide financially for their children. Getting a child support order issued through the Cook County Court/Domestic Relations Division or other county Court in Northeast Illinois is the best way to ensure you get the maximum amount your child deserves and that these payments are made in a timely fashion.

Once an order is in place, legal actions can be taken if the other parent fails to comply or falls behind in their payments. This includes:

  • Wage garnishment
  • Seizure of money in bank accounts
  • Liens on property they own

To avoid paying child support in the Chicago area, the other parent may hide assets or even quit their job, relying on Social Security benefits instead. These can also be seized to make up for any outstanding child support amounts owed.

Social Security Benefits Can Be Garnished For Child Support

Disability, retirement, and supplemental benefits for low-income individuals are available through the Social Security Administration (SSA). While there are laws protecting these benefits from bankruptcy and creditor claims, there are two situations in which they can be garnished: for payment of back taxes and for child support debts.

Social Security benefits can be garnished for child support, as well as for restitution or alimony payments. While Social Security is a federal program, each state has its own rules regarding how this is done. Under the Illinois Statutes (750 ILCS 28/), the Income Withholding for Support Act allows up to 65 percent of the non-paying parent’s benefits to be withheld. This can be used for the following:

  • To satisfy current child support payments
  • To make up for past arrearages
  • To cover any interest added to the amount of past child support owed

The total amount you are entitled to in garnishing Social Security benefits for child support will depend on whether they have any other outstanding child support, other family court obligations, or past-due taxes.

Call Our Chicago Area Child Support Lawyers

You and your child should not have to sacrifice or suffer financially because the other parent refuses to pay child support. At Gordon & Perlut, LLC., our skilled Chicago area child support lawyers help you get the payments you are entitled to. Give us a call and request a free, initial consultation to discuss your options today at (312) 360-0250.