Understanding income withholding for child support

| Jan 2, 2020 | Child Support, Firm News |

Parents are required to make their child support payments on time and in full. For Mississippi parents who have a child support order, it is possible that their employer will need to withhold income so the payments can be made. For the custodial parent and the supporting parent, it is important to understand how much can be withheld from the employee’s pay to account for child support. It is also essential to know when there is a lump sum payment made to the employee.

If an employer is ordered to withhold pay from an employee’s wages so child support can be paid, there is a maximum amount that can be withheld. The Consumer Credit Protection Act protects employees in these circumstances. The law applies to those who are paying alimony and child support. If the person who is obligated to pay, known as the obligor, is having income withheld, it is limited to half their disposable earnings if he or she resides with a second family and provides support to them; it is 60 percent if there is no support paid to a second family. The amount will be 55 percent for the person supporting a second family and 65 percent if there is no support to a second family if the person is behind on support for 12 weeks or more.

When a lump sum is to be paid to an employee and it surpasses $500, the employer must inform the Department of Human Services if there is a provision regarding lump sums and arrears that need to be paid. If a lump sum is to be paid, the employer is required to inform the agency a minimum of 45 days before that payment is to be made or when it is decided that it will be paid if that is less than 45 days away. This lump sum cannot be released to the employee until the Department of Human Services has given authorization or 30 days of the intended date of payment have passed, whichever comes first.

With child support enforcement and other family law matters, it is possible there will be a withholding order given to the obligor’s employer. Understanding this process can be critical to the supporting party and the supported party. For these matters, having legal assistance might be needed. Calling for advice from a law firm experienced in family law may help.