Is withholding visitation a viable tactic for support non-payment?

On Behalf of | Feb 8, 2023 | Child Support |

In Alaska, the issue of withholding visitation because of unpaid child support is a complex one. The state follows a strict policy regarding child support.

Visitation and child support

When a parent fails to pay child support, the other parent may not withhold visitation as punishment. This is because child support and visitation are separate legal matters in Alaska. The court considers the child’s best interests when making decisions about child support and visitation, and withholding visitation over non-paid support can be a form of retaliation.

Instead, the parent who is owed child support should take the proper legal steps to collect the unpaid amount. They can file a complaint with the child support enforcement office or request the enforcement of the child support order by the court. If the court finds the non-paying parent in contempt of court, they may face penalties such as wage garnishment, bank account seizure or even jail time.

Enforcement of visitation and child support orders

While the court can enforce a child support order, it cannot enforce a visitation schedule. Suppose the non-paying parent is also withholding visitation. In that case, the other parent may need additional legal action to enforce the visitation schedule.

Financial obligation

In Alaska, both parents have a legal obligation to support their children financially, and failure can result in serious consequences. However, it’s crucial to handle the issue of non-paid child support through the proper channels and not by withholding visitation. This helps in respecting the child’s interests and that a resolution occurs promptly.

Not an option

Withholding visitation over non-paid child support in Alaska is not a viable option. The state takes child support very seriously, and there are proper legal channels to collect child support. The court considers the child’s best interests when making decisions about child support and visitation, and it’s essential to approach this issue responsibly and fairly.

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The Law Offices of Herbert M. Pearce
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