If you are a divorced parent in Ohio, you may be required to pay child support to your former spouse. Most likely, you went to court, and the amount you were ordered to pay was based on your income among other factors. However, if you lose your job, you might wonder whether you are obligated to continue paying.
In general, your support order will not be changed. If you file for unemployment, the amount that you owe may be deducted from your unemployment payment although there is a limit to the percentage that can be deducted. What you owe in back pay and interest may continue to accumulate.
There is also a provision in place that seeks to prevent a parent from quitting work in order to avoid paying child support. If you quit a job or even take a job that pays substantially less than you normally make, a court may continue to require you to pay child support based on the type of salary that it estimates you should be making.
Another consideration if you lose a job is the child’s health insurance. As part of the child support agreement, you might be responsible for providing this as well, but you may lose your health insurance along with your job. It might be possible for the other parent to include the child on their health insurance while you are unemployed. In fact, throughout the process, you should try to be transparent and work with both the court and the other parent.
If you are experiencing financial hardship, you might need to ask the court for a modification. It is important not to delay on requesting this since it is not retroactive.