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Collecting Back Child Support?

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February 25, 2018

My sons' father recently passed away' They are 40 and 37. Dad never paid a dime of child support. Sister is beneficiary on the IRA. Shouldn't that go to the sons? Also what about Social Security?

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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
February 26, 20180 found this helpful
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Your sons are too old to get survivor benefits from Social Security. It is my understanding that a person can choose anyone they want to be the beneficiary of their IRA. It doesnt even have to be their spouse.

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Diamond Post Medal for All Time! 1,298 Posts
February 26, 20180 found this helpful
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The beneficiary he selected can be any person he chooses after he passes.

As far as social security, up to age 18/19 (if still in elementary or secondary school full time) or disabled before 22 and remain disabled.

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Reference: www.ssa.gov/.../onyourown4.html

Too late to collect any money.

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
February 26, 20180 found this helpful
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It is sad that you did not pursue getting child support when your sons were younger but perhaps you had your reasons at that time. Or perhaps you tried and no funds were available?

  • If their father had no other assets then there will not be any funds available to them.
  • Social Security survivor benefits are paid to help support children under 18/19 years of age (or disabled before age 22).
  • There is a $255 death benefit from SS but it does not appear you or your sons qualify.
  • You can check this site for SS information.
  • www.thebalance.com/who-is-eligible-for-a-social-security...
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  • You may be able to collect SS benefits from your husband's earnings when you reach retirement age but that would only help you if the his benefit was higher than your own.
  • An IRA account can be signed over to anyone and does not have to be a family member.
  • If your husband had other assets then you and your sons could hire an attorney to look into whether anything could be awarded to you for any unpaid back support.
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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
February 26, 20181 found this helpful
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Your children are adults now and it is way too late to think about child support now. You should have done this 30 years ago. As for an IRA, he doesn't have to leave it to his kids. He can leave this to anyone he wants. You don't have a case now and there is nothing you can do any longer.

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I had to deal with this. My daughter's father never paid child support and was absent from her life until she was 37. There is nothing I can do or anyone can do to make him pay now.

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22 More Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

January 24, 2017

My ex-husband had his bank account frozen for back child support. How long will it take for me to see any of that money?


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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 255 Posts
January 25, 20170 found this helpful
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Freezing the account only means he can't take money out of it. It may not help you any at all. The main factor here is how much money was in his account.

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If he owes you $20000 in back support, but only has $236 in the account, it doesn't do you much good. You will need to talk to the court.

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February 27, 2018

My ex-husband told me they took out 5,000.00 for back child support from his lump sum payment along with continuing to take out $136.00 a month until back support is paid. My question is when in the world will I receive it? It's been almost 2 months now and I called my support office and they know nothing.

I am on SSI now, but that shouldn't keep me from receiving what's owed or does it? Nobody can tell me anything or if it takes awhile. I have never received a TANF check, but I did get help with food stamps and a medical card for my child back when he wasn't paying. She's in her twenties now and I would think they would give me back support. I just need to know how long they hold it before contacting the Department of Jobs and Family Services.

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
February 28, 20180 found this helpful
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You should go to your local Social Security office as soon as possible because once that back payment check is cashed it will be very difficult to obtain any of those funds.

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I am not sure if your husband is telling you the truth but if you have not had any communication from the Social Security office then you most likely are not in line for that check.

You do not need anything from your husband so do not wait until time has passed and you miss out on what should be yours.
Do you know who filed papers with the SS office for you to be able to receive a payment of any kind?
Do you have any paperwork from the SS office saying you will receive anything?
All of this is what you would have received if benefits were going to be paid to you.
Go to your SS office ASAP. Please do not wait to get any kind of papers from anyone - you are the one that can get this information from the SSA.
You do not need proof of anything except your SS number as well as your husbands (if you have it) and your child's SS number.

I would really be surprised if they have anything on record about your case but then sometimes government agencies are slow but you need to know and they are the only people who can tell you.

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August 12, 2012

How I do I go about receiving owed child support payments from my father at the age of 23 even though my mom is dead and now he wants her death certificate to obtain his license back after suspension?

By Shay

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August 14, 20120 found this helpful
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Do not give him the needed death certificate. Contact Legal Aid services in your community to get good advice. It's usually free. The deadbeat may be able to get the death certificate without getting it from you so beat him to the punch and file for the money that is due you first.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 147 Feedbacks
August 15, 20120 found this helpful
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Call the Attorney Generals office in your state and ask. I doubt you can get back child support but they should be able to tell you. Or, ask the question in your search engine but be sure to include what state you need info for.

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May 8, 2018

If I am 20 years old and my father pays my mother back child support is there a way I can go after that for me to receive it instead of my mother? I live in New Jersey.


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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
May 11, 20180 found this helpful
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The back support that your mother is receiving is money that should have been paid for your care when you were younger (under 18-19). So I believe the answer to your question would be - no - you would not have any legal right to those payments.

  • I believe the first question would be - did you live with your mother during those years? Did she provide you a place to live, food, clothing and other things that you needed?
  • If you did not live with her then whoever provided those things would be the next person in line to ask for the "back payments" as you were only the recipient and not the provider.
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April 6, 2015

My mother was owed tens of thousands of dollars in child support. This was between 25 to 35 years ago. Back then in Philadelphia there was no enforcement. My father was murdered about 10 years ago and would have been about 75 today. Can my mother collect anything from Social Security or any back pay? They were married 20 years.

By Rich

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Bronze Answer Medal for All Time! 220 Answers
April 6, 20150 found this helpful
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Only the Social Security Administration can answer your questions. You can find some information via their website but should have all of your questions answered by visiting their local office.

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May 21, 2018

My father paid all of his child support to my mother who had passed away in 2012. Someone recently told me that there is a list with my mother's name on it for child support back pay and they could not contact her to give her the money they were holding. I went to the child support offices in my county, they told me something about taking it to court and for what I really don't know.

I'm of age now, I'm her only child. That money should go to me, I am trying to support my own home and that money that has just been sitting there. It would really come in handy. If anyone knows what I can do to get them to hand over my money that would be amazing!

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February 6, 2017

I raised my grandson from 3 months to 11 years. At the 11th year Steven moved in with his mother.

Years later I located the father of my grandson. We all did the kumbaya thing, etc., I told him that I wanted him to help Steven and put him through a trade school. 6 years later and after many heated arguments Steven is going to a trade school, but his father has stuck him with half the bill.

Long story short, can I collect child support from the father for the years of his life that I totally supported him? He has a good business and his wife is well placed in medical science.

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February 5, 2019

My ex owes $65,000 in child support arrears. The automatic deduction from his monthly navy retirement income of $1,400 is only $100. He also receives SSI. He is now in a nursing home. My DOR caseworker won't contact the navy to request an increase in the child support arrears deduction. (He is out of state living in Florida, the case is in Massachusetts). What can I do to get an increased deduction?


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April 12, 2016

I have a question and hope you guys can help. I'm 28 and I found my dad. I would like to know can I still charge him for unpaid child support?


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Bronze Answer Medal for All Time! 220 Answers
April 13, 20160 found this helpful

You can certainly try to collect past due child support, however, any state agency will probably not be interested in filing collection efforts as you are now an adult and the case is very old. They already have far too many current cases to litigate now. However, you can retain an attorney to file a legal claim of unpaid benefits. Of course, this is an expensive matter as the attorney will require a fee (retainer) up front before researching and filing a case on your behalf. Considering your eventual legal costs of a suit against your father, you must be sure that he has the money and other financial resources to win any suit against him. If he does not have money, etc., to claim, any legal action will only be worth the paper it is printed on. Good Luck.

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Bronze Answer Medal for All Time! 220 Answers
April 13, 20160 found this helpful

Addendum:
If you know now that your father does have significant financial resources to pay unpaid child support, you can ask your attorney to first suggest a meeting with both parties to discuss a settlement now to avoid much more legal expense on both sides in the future. If you father refuses a settlement attempt, you can then pursue formal litigation.

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April 13, 20160 found this helpful

And then there's the issue of whether you want a relationship with your dad. Going after him for money sounds to me like a great way to keep him out of your life.

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
April 14, 20160 found this helpful

Were you trying to find your dad or did this just "happen"?
If you were looking for your dad then I think the question would be - why? because you wanted to be able to see him sometime or was the reason just for money?

You do not tell very much so it is difficult to even offer intelligent suggestions.
How long has your dad been "missing" and why has he not been around? It seems we can assume your parents were divorced many years ago but why is it not your mother who is seeking back support or whoever your guardian was during your younger years? This is assuming there was a legal amount of support mentioned in the divorce. I am not sure the money would be paid to someone that did not provide the support as that is what it was set up for.

The person who suggested getting everyone together seems like a really good suggestion.
You will need a lot of legal papers before approaching an attorney. Copies of your parent's divorce papers, something showing how much money your dad paid (of course the burden of proof will fall to him), copy of your birth certificate, and there may be more information needed but I feel sure your legal guardian during your younger years will also need to be present (if available).

I am not experienced with this type of legal action so all of this is just "talk" but common sense should prevail and it is difficult for me to see someone being able to collect money for something that was paid by someone else.
If I am mistaken in my "thinking" please correct my post as I am always willing to learn.

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April 17, 2020

I'm 26 and in college. My dad moved out of state after my mom passed and my sister took custody of us. My dad recently called and asked if we were receiving child support because they are garnishing his check.

Is there a way I can relieve it or see how can I receive it?

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June 11, 2018

What can I do if my biological father owes child support that he has never paid? I am in my 30s and he is 81. He denied me in the beginning and still does, but I have the original court documents stating he is the father and has to pay a certain amount, as well as the original DNA test.

I know he isn't gonna be here much longer, if he hasn't already died (I don't know). He also lives in Florida and their laws are a little different than my state. Can someone help me out with some answers?

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June 8, 2017

My daughter's father has not yet paid back the child support he was order to pay 13 years ago; his family has been hiding. My daughter will be 18 next month and she receives SSI. I was told from someone that he receives SS. What should I do?


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