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Failure to pay child support leads man to sell house

As readers of our previous posts have probably seen, the failure to pay child support is a serious concern in Maryland and throughout the country. Billions of dollars are owed throughout America in child support arrears, and it doesn’t look like the problem is going to be getting better anytime soon. However, a recent effort in Maryland turned out to successfully result in the full payment of one man’s unpaid child support – an effort that came at the last possible moment for this man.

According to the reports, the man owed approximately $60,000 in unpaid child support. As the state’s attorney began to take action to collect these funds from the man, who apparently quite obviously had the means to pay, the man decided to sell his home to pay off the balance owed. The state’s attorney had already been garnishing funds from this man’s bank accounts. Officials even attempted to seize the man’s motorcycle. To avoid this move, the man sold his home, valued at $185,700, and sent in a check for $63,000.

Although it is good news that there is one less person in Maryland with large child support arrears, the problem probably did not need to come to the point that it did. When two parties cannot come to an agreement on what amount of child support should be paid, it will be up to the court to decide the amount, based on the court’s view of what is in the best interests of the child. The everyday expenses for children vary drastically, but the amount the court settles on is usually within the paying party’s ability to meet. But, when circumstances change, no matter how temporary, the best tactic is usually to ask for a modification.

A child support agreement modification can make it easier for the paying party to comply with court orders. And, when a modification is entered, it can allow the party to avoid unpleasant confrontation with authorities, such as is common when the state is forced to begin seizing assets.

Source: Havre de Grace, MD Patch, “Havre de Grace Man Sells Home to Pay Child Support,” Elizabeth Janney, Nov. 27, 2012

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