In the event of a devastating work-related injury or other unforeseen circumstance, injured workers with children may sometimes find themselves in tough financial straits and fall behind on their obligation to pay child support. In fact, this scenario is not uncommon. In some cases, injured or ill workers who have fallen behind on child support may see their weekly workers’ compensation benefits affected, or may find that there is a limitation on the amount that they can expect to receive out of a settlement of their claim.
In these types of situations, it is highly recommended that workers make an effort to work out an arrangement with the other parent as early as possible before the amount of arrears becomes difficult to manage. If a court or government agency should get involved to collect the owed child support, however, things can become more complex.
The following may occur if a parent falls behind on their child support while receiving benefits through workers’ compensation:
- Deduction from weekly benefits: The courts may require the workers’ compensation insurance carrier to automatically deduct a certain amount of the injured parent’s weekly benefits check to pay back child support.
- Lump sum: When a worker receives a lump sum settlement and he or she is in arrears on child support, the courts may require all or part of the remaining child support arrearage to be paid out of the lump sum settlement. Whether it is all or only part depends on the amounts involved. The money left over in the settlement after the owed child support is paid is then given to the claimant.
In certain circumstances, the amount of deduction from settlement proceeds can be negotiated with the assistance of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. If you have been injured in a workplace accident and are worried about losing a large portion of your settlement due to child support, contact Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. With 26 years of proven legal experience, our Atlanta workers’ compensation attorney can protect your rights and help you negotiate a fair resolution.
Discover your legal options today – call (888) 665-7699.