When you have been the victim in a personal injury accident, you may have many thoughts running through your head, including questions about the right type of treatment, if you can get compensation for your injuries and for the pain the accident caused, and how you can move on with your life. However, if you are paying child support, you likely have other questions revolving around how personal injury compensation can impact your child support payments. Before you stress about the impact, reach out to the family law attorneys for help. They can walk you through the types of payment you may be looking at after your personal injury claim and how these can affect child support. It is important to stay on top of your payments, so speak with a caring and trusted attorney today. 

Terms to Know

Before getting into the details of the payments, there are two important terms to know when it comes to child support payments and how a personal injury settlement can affect them.

  • Arrears. An arrear is the money that you owe on a debt that you should have paid earlier. Thus, if you have any outstanding child support payments that you have yet to pay, it is called “child support arrears.”
  • Liens. When there is a lien on your property, it means that if you borrow money to own certain property, the lender can take possession of that property until you can pay back your debt. Thus, it is possible if you are unable to make your child support payments on time, the state can place a lien on your personal injury settlement.

How does this work with child support payments?

When you receive a settlement for your personal injury claim, it is possible for the state to take money from that claim to begin paying back your outstanding child support arrears. However, it is important to speak with your attorney about your specific circumstances since some or all the compensation you received after your personal injury may be going directly to medical bills for a hospital stay, surgery, or your treatment. When the state does take part of your personal injury claim settlement to pay back your child support debt, you—as well as the insurance company that is paying for your personal injury claim—should have been notified immediately.

What if I am unable to make my medical payments?

While the court takes paying your child support seriously and will work hard to ensure you pay back any money you owe, they will allow you to keep money from your settlement to pay off medical bills relating to your personal injury claim and even the attorney’s fees. However, additional money from the settlement will be used for child support.

 If you were recently injured and are receiving money from your personal injury settlement but still owe money for child support, you should speak with a family law attorney as soon as possible to discuss how your settlement affects your unpaid child support arrears. For more information, call a family law attorney, like a family law attorney in Fairfax, VA, today.

Thank you to the experts at May Law, LLP, for their insight and expertise in family law.

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