After a divorce is finalized, it is not uncommon to fight about child support and visitation. Many people assume that if a parent is not timely paying child support, they should not be able to exercise visitation and parenting time with the children.
In Georgia, that is not the case. If you are the primary physical custodian and the other parent is not paying child support, you cannot legally withhold visitation until payment is made. While it may seem unfair to require normal visitation to continue even when a parent is not supporting the children, the law separates these obligations in recognition that children benefit from having a close connection to both of their parents.
If you are not receiving court ordered child support from a former spouse, there are legal remedies you can and should pursue through the courts. If you are required to pay child support but are unable to do so, you should immediately file a modification requesting that child support be reduced to reflect your current financial circumstances.
Self-help remedies such as not allowing visitation or stopping child support payments may result in a finding of contempt and an order requiring you to pay attorneys fees to your former spouse.
For questions about Georgia law on child support and visitation, talk to our experienced Georgi family law attorneys.