Both parents are obligated to provide financially for their child, even after a divorce has taken place. If you’re the non-custodial parent, this usually entails child support payments, which are determined by the court. It’s important to take the right steps if you’re ordered to pay child support, as explained by Fatherly

Keep accurate records

Keep a record of when and how much is paid each month. Paying by check or via debit card is preferred in this case, as it provides verification that a payment has been made. If you buy clothing or other items for your children, make sure you keep receipts as proof. That way, if your ex disputes your payment history you have solid evidence backing it up. You should also avoid making payments in cash, or in the very least have written correspondence showing that money has changed hands. 

Make payments on time

Failing to make payments not only harms your kids, it can also land you in legal trouble. Child support payments are court-ordered, which means that failure to pay could end up in a contempt charge. After so long, your wages may be garnished, assets may be seized, or you might be prevented from obtaining professional licensing. You could also face jail time when back child support payments spanning many years. 

Don’t involve your kids

When it comes to financial disputes, keep your kids out of it. Your children likely have no control over how your ex is spending the money you provide. Additionally, you could potentially tarnish your relationship with your children if you badmouth the other parent or refuse to make payments as required. If you’re concerned about a support order, contact your lawyer about possibly making a modification. Also, if you anticipate a change in your financial situation, contact your former spouse and the court as soon as possible.