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Back child support doesn't disappear when kids turn 18

Some custodial parents in North Carolina are owed back child support from their children's noncustodial parents. In some cases, this back debt may remain even as the children reach age 18, and the parents may not be aware that they may still take action to collect on the debt.

Back child support debt doesn't disappear when children reach age 18, and it cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. There are several enforcement actions that may be taken in order to compel payment of the debt by the delinquent parents. Child support payments must continue after the children reach age 18 until the amount in arrears is repaid in full.

The courts and government agencies may take multiple enforcement actions, including wage garnishments, the revocation of occupational or professional licenses, the revocation of driver's licenses, placing liens on the delinquent parents' property and intercepting federal and state income tax refunds. Custodial parents may seek to enforce the child support arrears by filing motions with the court that holds jurisdiction over their cases or by filling out the appropriate documents with the state's child support enforcement agency.

People who owe delinquent payments may want to try to reach an agreement about paying their balances with their children's custodial parents instead of waiting for the state or the court to initiate enforcement actions. It is important for delinquent parents to pay what they owe for the support of their children. Parents who are owed child support arrears may want to get help from family law attorneys to recover what they are owed. Attorneys may file the appropriate documentation with the court. They may also be able to help locate noncustodial parents who owe back child support with the help of investigators.

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