Coates & Frey, Attorneys at Law, LLLC
Phone: (808) 524-4854

Can you deny visitation over unpaid child support in Hawaii?

After a divorce or when parents aren't married, it's common to have an order of support for the child. The child support is generally paid by parent who doesn't have primary custody of the child to the parent that does. While the paying parent doesn't have control over how that money is spent, it's generally assumed that the money will provide the child with food, shelter, clothing, educational needs and other important items.

Unfortunately, some parents just don't pay. Call them "deadbeat" moms or dads, if you like, they can't be shamed into doing what's right by their children. Often, they'll excuse their refusal to send support by claiming they can't live on any less than they have (no matter what their children have to do without) or that they shouldn't have to pay the receiving parent without any say-so over how the money gets spent.

How do you deal with this issue? One option you do not have is interfering with the other parent's court-ordered visitation time. While that seems like a natural way to try to force the other parent into paying, a parent's right to see his or her child is not actually dependent on his or her payment of support. If you try to connect the two issues, you could find yourself forced to defend yourself in court.

Instead, here are some of the ways that child support orders can be enforced:

  • Tax-return offsets (withholding)
  • Garnished wages
  • Revoked driving privileges until the payment is made
  • A suspended business license or professional license
  • Seized property that can be sold for the delinquent support

These aren't the only possible methods that the court can use to coax or outright force a reluctant payor to settle up. If you're having trouble collecting the child support your child is due, find out more about the legal steps you can take.

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