Attorney, Cordell & Cordell
Many people are adamantly opposing to the idea of having their child support payments being deducted from their paychecks since the paying party often sees it as an invasion of privacy.
I have had clients tell me that they will fight any order that requires their paychecks to withhold their child support because they simply do not want their employers to know their personal business.
It is often the perception that a paying parent should not be subject to any wage garnishment so long as they are current on their support payment.
But that isn’t always the case.
The reality in many states, including Georgia where I practice, is that income deduction orders are authorized by statute in all cases.
This means that if you have been ordered to pay child support, you do not have to be in arrears before the custodial parent has a right to obtain an income deduction order.
In fact, in many cases, the income deduction order is entered contemporaneously to the child support order.
According to my state’s law, the issuance of an income deduction shall be addressed in any final decree of divorce or final settlement agreement. It is presumed that an Income Deduction Order will be entered in all cases and in order to deviate from this presumption, there must be an agreement of the parties.
There are many cases in which the parties do agree that an income deduction order is not necessary, or even desired.
The reality is the Income Deduction Order, though designed to protect the primary custodial parent, is a protection mechanism for both parents. The court will typically presume that child support is a parent’s first priority and by having the support come from the paycheck before the paying parent receives it, it is certain that the child support payment will be paid before anything else.
Additionally, the element of unnecessary contact between parties is eliminated when there is an income deduction order. There is no need for phone calls or text messages regarding when the payments are going to be received.
Though it is completely understandable for a parent to not want his personal life, including issues surrounding his divorce and child support obligations to be public knowledge amongst his co-workers, the income deduction order really can be a good tool.
It truly does protect parents for accumulating arrearages on their support payments.
Furthermore, since some states laws allow for the receiving parent to obtain an income deduction order, regardless of circumstance, it truly makes no sense to try to fight it. There are so many aspects of a divorce or support order that are in controversy and that can be argued. Those are the issues that any party should focus their energies on.
In short, the only way to get out of having child support deducted from pay is by agreement of the parties.
Cordell & Cordell has men’s divorce lawyers located nationwide should you seek legal representation.
Andrea M. Johnson is a Senior Attorney in the Atlanta, Georgia office of Cordell & Cordell, where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Johnson is licensed to practice law in the state of Georgia. Ms. Johnson was born in the metro-Atlanta area and has spent most of her life in Georgia. She received her Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia in 1998. Ms. Johnson received her Juris Doctor from Mercer University School of Law in 2002. Since graduating from law school, Ms. Johnson has practiced in the area of family law. Additionally, she has worked in general civil practice, immigration, and estate planning. Ms. Johnson has briefed two cases successfully before the Georgia Court of Appeals, one of which was a modification of custody action.