Social media has become a useful tool in finding those noncustodial parents who can afford to pay child support but choose not to do so. An assistant district attorney in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is working toward bringing charges against these parents. At least three individuals who bragged about their finances when they were overdue in paying child support are facing charges.
The father of one 3-year-old boy who is battling leukemia has only paid $189 in child support during the child's life, but the man supposedly posted comments on Facebook boasting about his hefty income. Another parent who was ordered to pay $100 a month in child support made the payment once, but he was discovered in a Facebook photo with his hands full of cash. A third person who allegedly failed to pay child support is believed to have purchased a music studio, and one mother chose to get a nose job instead of making payments.
The assistant district attorney says that these parents likely realize that their social media posts are evidence but believe that no one cares. She emphasized that there is a distinction between parents who cannot and those who can but do not pay child support. In her opinion, the most important part of her job is determining who has resources and who does not amongst nonpaying parents.
The courts take delinquent child support very seriously, and children have the right to have their financial needs met. A family law attorney could assist a parent who is involved in a child support dispute. Some of the issues that could be addressed are the amount of support that should be paid and the visitation rights of the noncustodial parent. If a paying parent's financial situation changes, either parent can seek a child support modification.
Source: WITI, "Facebook posts get deadbeat parents busted for not paying child support," Stephen Davis and Meghan Dwyer, July 17, 2014
Source: Opposing Views, "Fathers Face Charges For Avoiding Child Support, Bragging About Money On Facebook ", Sarah Fruchtnicht, July 17, 2014