Divorces are often messy. They can be filled with contention and anger as two people attempt to extricate themselves from their marriage. Unfortunately, for some couples in Florida, the litigation is not always over after a divorce is settled. According to U.S Census data, many spouses fail to fulfill their financial obligations, including child support, outlined in their settlements. This typically leaves their former spouse wondering how to gain the financial payments to which they are legally entitled.
Many people have found it difficult to force their former partner to fulfill their financial responsibilities. However, some people with experience with this type of situation recommend the use of a Qualified Domestic Relations Order to ensure they receive their court-ordered payments. Typically, QDROs are used to ensure the equitable split of a spouse’s retirement account. However, federal laws allow the use of such accounts to ensure that spouses meet their child and spousal support obligations.
Money to cover support payments in arrears can be obtained through a retirement plan if a judge orders it. However, certain restrictions on retirement plans may require careful calculations regarding the amount of payments to be taken from the account. It has been argued that even attorney fees can be recovered from such an account because some courts consider such fees to be a part of support. Some even argue that QDROs can be best used to secure temporary payments and/or attorney’s fees.
The cost of providing for a child is typically astronomical today. It is especially important that both parents fulfill their financial responsibilities with regard to their children, including child support. Florida parents who have not received payments agreed upon in their divorce settlement may benefit by becoming aware of all of the options available to them to secure any support to which they are rightfully entitled.
Source: Forbes, How To Get Your Ex-Husband To Honor The Financial Terms Of Your Divorce Settlement, Jeff Landers, Feb. 19, 2014