You are entitled to a personal injury settlement after a car accident for damages or injuries if another party caused the accident. The compensation should cater for the medical bills, the suffering, and the pain incurred after the accident. You might be on your way to winning that car accident settlement, but is it entirely safe
Unfortunately, your previous unpaid child support payments might come in the way of your personal injury settlement. What does this mean? What are your options if you find yourself in this position? Read on to discover more about this topic.
Will Past-Due Child Support Affect Your Car Accident Settlement?
Yes, past-due child support payments will most likely affect your car accident settlement. Typically, a child support lien will be placed on your compensation from the car accident case, garnishing a part of the funds and channeling it to the past-due child support payments.
What Is Child Support Lien?
Suppose you have unpaid child support from previous arrangements and you have finally received your car accident settlement; the state is allowed to place a lien on the compensation amount. The child support agencies in charge of your case are entitled to collect the entire amount of the owed debt from your settlement.
You could be at risk of being left with nothing from the settlement. Fortunately, you could negotiate terms with the child support agency and request them to reduce the portion as long as you promise to continue paying child support faithfully.
Why Is the Child Support Lien Necessary?
These laws and restrictions are put in place to ensure that both parents take their responsibilities seriously. Child support is part of the commitment that protects the interest of your child after divorce or separation. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you fight to protect your rights and interests.
What Bills Will Be Settled First?
Before re-distributing the money to settle child support, the law requires the lien to permit settlement of medical expenses and attorney fees first. You may be required to pay future medical costs attached to the car accident from your pocket. However, with a reduction of the child support payments, you may have the chance to adequately settle your expenses.
Will the Court Demand Full Payment of the Past-due Child Support?
Getting the agency to reduce the payment you owe child support isn’t as easy as it may sound. You are likely to pay for these mistakes heavily after settling attorney fees and medical expenses. While it is possible to get the amount you owe reduced, working with a lawyer helps you keep realistic expectations.
What If You Aren’t Working? Do These Rules Still Apply?
A majority of victims wait until it is too late to salvage the situation. If the car accident left you unemployed or disabled, you are entitled to file a petition that postpones your child support payments until you are back on your feet. Your attorney will provide expert opinion and advise you on preventing the lien from falling on you after a car accident settlement.
You can also get the court to modify your child support payments after the car accident that left you financially vulnerable. The court will examine the evidence provided and probably eliminate the lien on your car accident settlement.
The law language can be problematic for the average individual. As you navigate the legal processes after an accident, ensure you have an expert help by your side to help you get the best outcome for your case.