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St. Louis Criminal Defense Law Blog

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Did you know it is a crime not to pay child support?

            Did you know it is a crime not to pay child support?  And if you are more than 12 months in arrears, it is a felony. 

Prosecutors in the St. Louis area are filing more and more criminal cases for failure to pay child support, and the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office of St. Louis County in Clayton has an especially active Child Support Enforcement Unit.  Under Missouri Law, “Criminal Non-Support” is a Class D Felony, subject to a term of imprisonment of up to four years at the Missouri Department of Corrections. 

            It helps no one for a parent to go to prison for failure to pay child support.  The parent cannot earn income in prison, which means it is impossible for the child to receive support payments during the term of incarceration. 

            Furthermore, going to prison does not eliminate the child support that is back due.  In other words, a parent who owes child support cannot just choose to serve a prison term instead of paying because he will still owe the child support when released.  In fact, monthly child support obligations will continue to become due while the parent is in prison, so the arrears will actually increase during the prison term.

            If you have had a criminal case filed against you for failure to pay child support, there ARE ways to deal with it and avoid going to jail or prison – even if there is already a warrant out for your arrest.  But it is crucial that you hire an experienced criminal defense attorney right away. 

If you have criminal charges related to child support, call attorney W. Scott Rose at (314) 812-4700 right away.  I will work to make sure that you are released on bond so that you can work and provide support for your children.  And if your monthly payments are more than you can afford, I can sometimes get those modified too.  I represent clients in Criminal Non-Support cases in St. Louis County, St. Louis City, Jefferson County, and St. Charles County. 

BASED IN ST. LOUIS, MO Rose Legal Services, LLC serves clients throughout St. Louis County, St. Louis City, St. Charles County, Jefferson County, O’Fallon, St. Peters, Kirkwood, Ladue, Clayton, and Creve Coeur.

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