Oklahoma law provides a number of tools to help in the enforcement of child support. The suspension of drivers licenses is one of those tools. It is a tool that is somewhat controversial in it application and effectiveness. Thus, it is often not the first tool of choice for many custodial parents seeking to collect child support payments from the non-custodial parent.
In order to use this tool, the non-custodial parent must be at least 90 days behind in payments. If you are considering this tool as part of a plan to collect child support, you will want to get the help of an Okmulgee family law attorney. There are ways to increase the effectiveness of this tool.
The Controversy Around Suspension Of Drivers Licenses
Like many things, this tool has supporters and critics. The supporters believe that parents who fail to support their children do not deserve driving privileges. They believe that suspending the non-custodial parent’s driver’s license can provide a powerful incentive in ensuring the parent pays court-ordered child support.
Critics believe that it can make an already difficult situation much worse. For parents who have difficulty working enough to meet their child support obligations, suspending their driver’s licenses makes it much more difficult to get to their jobs — which in turn adds difficulty to meeting their child support obligation.
There is some validity to both positions. However, there is evidence that not having a driver’s license makes it impossible to get a job in some industries and to keep a job in other industries. This is particularly true in construction, transportation, and delivery jobs.
Another Way To Use Suspension Of Drivers Licenses
There is another way to use a possible suspension to help enforce child support collection. Instead of requesting an immediate suspension of the driver’s license, it can be more helpful to ask the court for probation. This allows a number of benefits to both parents.
Probation acts as a more powerful incentive. Let’s say that you ask the court for a three-year probationary period. In order to avoid the suspension, the non-custodial parent must stay current in their payments and pay the past due amount owed.
This gets the custodial parent the support that is needed. The non-custodial parent keeps their license as long as they abide by the terms of the probation. This helps that parent continue to work without interruption.
The child receives the benefit of the payments. The matter is resolved between the parents with a modicum of rancor.
Finally, the court oversees the process. It is a win-win situation. Learn more from an experienced Okmulgee family law attorney.
Other Support Enforcement Tools
There are other tools that are available. Wage garnishment; levying against the non-paying parent’s bank accounts or other property; intercepting tax returns or other income sources; and withholding passports or other professional licenses are chief among them. Finally, there are contempt proceedings that can be filed against the non-custodial parent. All of these enforcement tools have pluses and minuses.
Learn about the tools that might be best in your case. A call to an experienced Okmulgee child support attorney can be the first step in getting the help you need.
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