Failure to provide child support can send you to prison. And this is a usual problem a parent encounters from their ex-partner. But how about committing a child support fraud? Can the court lock you up behind bars for that? Keep reading to find out.
What Is Child Support?
Child support is the money given to the custodial parent to support the overall needs of the child.
Is Child Support Necessary?
Yes. Child support is essential, especially if the parents are no longer living together. Raising a child is very expensive, and a single parent usually can’t do it alone.
However, child support is not intended to benefit the custodial parent. Its purpose is to provide for the cost of the child’s shelter, food, education, and health and medical care.
How Is Child Support Determined?
Determining child support varies from state to state. But, most states use the income shares of parents to calculate child support.
The court will have to ask both parents to provide financial statements. It includes monthly income, expenses, assets, and liabilities.
You should know that income is not only what you earn from wages or salary. The court will also consider your investments, businesses, and other sources as income.
There are factors on how the court will determine how much is the amount you should support your child. This includes:
- Necessities of the child
- Health insurance
- Day Care Expenses
- The other parent or your ex-partner ability to support the child
- The child’s lifestyle and standard of living before your divorce or separation from your partner.
What are the Penalties for Child Support Fraud?
As mentioned, failure to provide child support is punishable by law. Same with committing child support fraud, it can also send you to prison. (Related: What is The Prison Experience Like?)
One common type of child support fraud is under-reporting an income. Both your ex-partner and the court can sue you for it.
The financial statements that you submitted to the court are under oath. Hence, false information is considered perjury.
Once convicted, you can face years of imprisonment on top of the fine that the court will sentence you. (Related: What Should You Say When Writing a Letter to a Judge)