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What happens to my child support order if I go to jail?

On Behalf of | Jan 21, 2023 | Family Law

Incarceration of one parent can be emotionally and financially stressful to the entire family. While most aspects of the incarcerated parent’s life are generally put on hold, certain obligations are never impacted. One such obligation is child support.

Going to jail means you cannot work and meet your child support obligations. So what happens to an active child support order if you are incarcerated in Kentucky?

How does Kentucky handle child support when the payer is incarcerated?

In Kentucky, just like most states, your child support obligation does not end when you go to jail. In fact, you will face serious penalties if you fail to pay child support for whatever reason, including incarceration.

If you are financially able, you must continue paying child support during your imprisonment period. However, if you cannot keep up with your child support obligation, then you need to show that imprisonment has interrupted your ability to work and, thus, pay child support. Consequently, unpaid child support will go into arrears that the court will require you to pay when you get out of prison.

How about modification?

As the paying party, you might be wondering whether incarceration can justify a child support modification. Unfortunately, this is not possible. Kentucky laws prohibit child support agencies from modifying child support on the basis of incarceration. Thus, if you petition the court for a modification, your request will likely be dismissed on grounds that your inability to pay is due to voluntary reasons.

Understandably, paying child support when you are in prison can be a daunting task. If you find yourself in a situation where you have to go to prison, you need to think about how you will meet your child support obligation