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Can Wages Be Garnished for Child Support in Texas?

 Posted on August 14, 2023 in Child Support

Irving, TX child support lawyerTexas law makes much about paying child support as automatic as possible. Not only is there a set formula for determining child support, but it is automatically paid, so long as you have a job. Most child support orders are satisfied by directly subtracting the amount from your paycheck. However, your paycheck could also be garnished when you owe child support. 

Most Child Support Is Paid Through Wage Garnishment 

Under the Texas Constitution, wages can only be garnished for unpaid child or spousal support. It does not matter whether the child support is owed in Texas or another state. Your employer could receive a garnishment order that they must enforce by withholding some of your paycheck. 

Now, all child support orders in Texas call for automatic garnishment from your paycheck unless the payor shows good cause or the two parents reach a mutual agreement. Instead of writing a monthly check to the other parent, the money comes straight from your check and is given directly to the other parent through the Child Support Division. Garnishment is just a way of saying that child support is taken directly from your paycheck right when the money is earned. While the word garnishment has a negative connotation, it can actually ensure that you pay child support in full and on time. Either way, it will be how your child support is paid. Nearly 80 percent of Texas child support is paid through garnishment. 

Paychecks Can Be Garnished for Back Child Support

In addition, your check could also be garnished if you fall behind on child support. The garnishment would be added to the amount that is already taken from your check for current child support obligations, subject to the limits discussed below. 

The obligation to have your paycheck garnished follows you from job to job. If you lose your job, the employing agency will need to notify the entity that ordered child support payments as soon as possible. In addition, they will need to provide the name of the new employer if it is available. Your check will continue to be garnished at the new employer. 

There Are Limits on Child Support Garnishment

Garnishment can actually take a large part of your disposable earnings. If you are not currently supporting a spouse or child, up to 60 percent of your disposable income (after tax and payment obligations) may be garnished. If you are supporting a spouse or child, up to 50 percent of your disposable income may be garnished. The garnishment would continue until you are current on child support. 

Contact a Dallas, TX Child Support Attorney Today

There is a possibility that your child support award can be modified if your income falls or if your financial situation changes significantly. An Irving, TX child support lawyer at Law Office of Michelle Poblenz can represent you in a modification proceeding. You can speak with an attorney by calling us at 469-845-3031.



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