Overpaying Child Support

Question:

My paycheck is currently being garnished for child support ($2000.00) monthly. My 2 children are grown, ages 24y and 21y. This garnishment should have stopped 4 months ago, however, it did not.

I don’t know if I need an attorney at this point or if I can file the necessary papers myself. My ex-wife still feels that “I still owe her” but I have paid what I was ordered by the judge to pay and now overpaying her.

What do I need to do to stop this? Can I get the amount she has been overpaid repaid to me?

 

Answer:

Unless your court order or garnishment order includes a termination date, you need another court order to end the obligation and the garnishment.   If a termination date is in the prior orders, you should only need to bring that to the attention of your employer/payor to end the garnishment.

If there is no termination date in your court orders and garnishment, then a motion to terminate the support usually will be necessary, with your ex-wife served a copy.  As you indicate that the mother claims you still “owe her”, you can assume she will contest the motion and advice of legal counsel is highly recommended.

If all of your child support was garnished (or otherwise paid through the courts or states), then you should have an absolute record of your payments to prove you are paid in full and the burden is on your ex-wife to prove she is still owed any sums.  However, if you paid any support directly to her, the burden generally is upon you to prove she received the payments.

Even though you need an order to end the garnishment, you should be able to obtain an order for her to repay you any overpayments made to her.  Whether there have been overpayments will have to be confirmed by the court.  Obtaining the repayment will require you to pursue collection of the judgment awarding you the refund, which may require additional proceedings.

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