Counties around the state of Minnesota collected $582.9 million for back child support in 2011. One particular county in Minnesota collected more than $3,000 per case in both 2011 and 2012. The average collected per case is $2,397.
Most of the child support collections came from income withholding. Some of the collections came from out-of-state collections. Other collections came from interception of federal or state tax returns and from unemployment insurance.
Collecting child support is no easy matter. Even though courts order individuals to pay child support and other forms of spousal support, many chose to simply ignore the court. This in turn robs children and parents of money they so desperately need for necessities. Such individuals that choose not to pay child support often rely on the complexity of the laws to make it difficult for the custodial parent to collect.
Family law attorneys see too much of parents unwilling to honor their child support obligations. It must be kept in mind that these sorts of collections are likely only the tip of the iceberg. Many matters of back child support being owed probably remain unreported, and there are other cases where the state would never be able to take the actions that it did without useful information first being provided to it by private sources.
Failing to pay child support does send a message that the needs of a child are considered unimportant. Motivating parents to agree on child support without first requiring a court order or state intervention is benefits all parties in a divorce – including mother, father, and child.