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Massachusetts child support enforcement: Garnishing wages

When it comes to child support, many custodial parents or legal guardians in Massachusetts may find that they need help collecting payments. There are various enforcement options offered in the state to help with this issue. One in particular is through the garnishment of wages.

Garnishing wages may seem extreme to some, but when a non-custodial parent is failing to make his or her court ordered child support payments, it may be one of the best ways to collect the funds owed. There are very strict laws when it comes to getting a non-custodial parent’s wages garnished, however. This is not something that can be done without a court order.

Wage garnishment is when a portion of one’s wages is withheld from a pay check by one’s employer for the purpose of paying a debt. When it comes to paying child support, the law allows for up to 50 to 60 percent of one’s pay check to be withheld. This is certainly a significant sum. If a non-custodial parent is more than 12 weeks behind on payments, this amount may increase by another 5 percent.

As this does require a court order, wage garnishment may not always be the first option in child support enforcement. However, when other attempts to collect fail to produce desirable results, this is a way to ensure payments are received. Those in Massachusetts who need help enforcing their child support orders can seek legal assistance in finding the best ways possible to collect so that their children’s needs can be met.

Source: FindLaw, “Wage Garnishment FAQ“, Accessed on Feb. 2, 2016

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