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Mchenry Divorce Attorneys on using Property Liens for Unpaid Child Support

Couple fighting Mchenry Divorce AttorneysIn Illinois, a lien arises by operation of law against the real property of a non-custodial parent who falls behind on his or her child support obligations. However, whether the lien actually attaches to the property and what the child support payer can do about the lien depends on the facts and circumstances of the specific case.

Initiation of Complaint

The custodial parent must file a verified complaint with the Illinois State Attorney’s office. If the complaint is deemed valid, the office may institute an action for back child support payments.

Enforceable Upon Recording

The recording of a notice of a lien along with the support order must be filed in the recorder’s office of the county or counties where the real estate is located. The State of Illinois is the holder of the interest in the property in the amount of the past-due child support. As with other liens, the State may initiate a foreclosure proceeding to satisfy the amount owed, or may wait until the property is sold or refinanced and collect the money at that time.

Contesting the Lien

One method of opposing the lien is demonstrating the underlying support order relied on for establishing the lien is incorrect or invalid. Absent that possibility, the obligated payer may be able to contend that the existence of the lien impairs his or her ability to make current child support payments if, for instance, the lien makes it impossible to borrow money on the property that is intended for support payments.

Release of Lien

If the lien is invalid or if the payer has made all the payments owed, it is important to release the lien so the title to the property may be cleared. If the payments have been satisfied, an affidavit indicating that fact must be filed in the recorder’s office and notice served to the custodial parent. If a mistake was made in establishing the lien, it can be difficult to correct. Proper documentation must be provided to clearly show payments were actually made and in what amounts or why payments were not in fact owed.

Contact Mchenry Divorce Attorneys for Legal Advice

Child support issues can be ongoing long after the divorce is finalized. If you are owed child support or believe you are paying too much, it is important to learn the facts and explore your options. Begin with a call to the Stetler Law Group, Mchenry divorce attorneys, at (815) 529-4554.