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Can my Texas Driver's License Be Suspended for Not paying Child Support?

Chapter 232 of the Texas Family Code has the answer to the question of whether a person can have their Driver’s License suspended for failure to pay child support.

In short, yes, your driver’s license (along with any license issued by a Texas agency) can be revoked or suspended for failing to pay child support.

If you’re a commercial truck driver, your ability to do your job and earn an income is put at severe risk if you don’t pay the child support you’ve been ordered to by a Court.

Child Support Enforcement

Typically, the party that is owed child support can request that their ex-spouse’s license be revoked in a child support enforcement suit. This suit is asking the court that originally heard the divorce suit between the parties to come back and hold the nonpaying spouse responsible for their failure to make timely payments of support.

Of the different types of enforcements that can be filed, child support enforcements are perhaps the most straight forward and easy to prove. Reason being is that the requesting party:

  1. simply must state the dates that payments were due,
  2. the frequency with which payments were missed and
  3. the total amount currently owed.

As the vast majority of child support payments are made through the State Child Support Disbursement Unit, the information the ex-spouse needs to get the money from the owing spouse is not difficult whatsoever.

What typically will occur is if the owing spouse had the ability to pay the child support as ordered then the Court will issue an Order that requires the owing spouse to pay the support in an installment type setup.

The Court has it in their power to:

  1. order license suspension or
  2. revocation but that order itself will be suspended as long as the re-payment of support occurs within the time period that the Court mandates.

The Carrot and the Stick

Why is this law on the books and why do some judges choose to go this route in issuing an order? For starters, the law intends to punish the mother or father who can pay support but chooses not to.

If we apply the age-old adage of “the carrot and stick” to this discussion then the revocation itself is the “stick”. Many people think that our legal system does not go far enough when it comes to enforcing the law. This is a situation where I don’t believe that argument can be made.

Secondly, the law intends to give the owing party a reason to pay support in the first place. If you are aware that there is a possibility that your livelihood or at the very least your mobility depends upon your successful and timely payment of child support then you are more than likely going to pay that support when it comes due.

When it comes to something like a commercial driver’s license, a person who has that license revoked will have to pay money to have it reinstated and may even have to re-apply to get a new one.

Some folks work jobs where they are paid by commission or by the completed project, etc. and are not able to reply upon a set salary over a given period of time. We will have clients hire us in situations like this and they will ask our advice on how to handle a situation like this.

Even when it comes to child support calculation, the Court will not care how it is that you are paid or the frequency. The Court will take into consideration an average of what you earn over a year or two year period and will determine your child support in that manner.

Listen to Your Grandmother

If your individual situation causes you to have sporadic income or income that fluctuates with the time of year the best advice would be to listen to your Grandmother’s advice from when you were a kid- and save up for it.

It is not an excuse to say that you haven’t been paid in five weeks because a big project at work fell through. When times are good at work- put some money aside for the times when things aren’t as rosy.

Doing this habitually causes it to become a routine and that helps avoid scenarios involving a State license like the ones described above. If an ex-spouse knows that the payments are usually consistent and for the amount owed, they will be less likely to file a lawsuit against the owing spouse for back child support. Most importantly, the people who stand to benefit the most from these payments, the children, will not go without simply because that monthly child support check did not arrive on time.

More than likely there will be Child Support

The simple truth is that unless the parties to a divorce or child custody case agree to there not being child support owed by either party, someone will be paying child support at the conclusion of a family law case in Texas. The extent to which a party must pay and the conditions to that process are extremely important. If you are in a situation where you are either owed child support or you’re behind in making payments having the right attorney at your side is critical.

The divorce attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC are ready and able to take your call and answer any questions you may have about the process and how to avoid costly mistakes that may lead to having personal or professional licenses suspended or revoked by the State of Texas. Please contact The Law Office of Bryan Fagan today for a consultation- free of charge.

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Child Support Ebook

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Other Articles you may be interested in:

  1. Child Support Modification in Texas (Part 1)
  2. What do I do if I have overpaid child support in Texas?
  3. Child Custody Basics in Texas
  4. Child Support and College Tuition in Texas
  5. Texas Child Support Appeals
  6. In Texas are Child Support and Visitation Connected?
  7. Why Ignoring Child Support Obligations is a Bad Idea in Texas
  8. Texas Child Support – Trust and Annuities
  9. Special Needs Children in Texas Child Support Cases
  10. How to get above guideline child support.
  11. Resolving Child Support Disputes without going to court: A how-to guide for Texas parents
  12. The benefits of hiring an attorney to represent you in a child support case
  13. When does your duty to pay child support end in Texas?
  14. Should a Divorced Parent Sign a Waiver (Release) and Indemnity Agreement to Allow a Child to Participate in Recreational Activities?
  15. Child Support Payments in Texas: How to Make them and Why

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