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Child support and the IRS

On Behalf of | Feb 28, 2023 | FAMILY LAW - Family Law

For parents going through a divorce or those that have already gone through one, you are likely familiar with the state’s child support system. Whether you are paying or receiving payments through the Maryland child support system, you may not know that the Internal Revenue Service also gets involved.

How does the IRS get involved?

The IRS is involved in the Maryland child support system through the Federal Income Tax Refund Offset Program. In this program, the IRS intercepts federal payments going to noncustodial parents to offset state child support arrearage.

You can qualify for the program with as little as a $150 of back child support debt. To qualify with this little of a debt, the custodial parent must receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits. The normal debt threshold is $500 or more.

Do I get a notification?

Yes. You get a notification when your Maryland child support arrearage (unpaid child support) has been sent and accepted by the IRS (Pre-Offset Notice) and when a federal payment is taken (Offset Notice). You can ask for an administrative hearing when you receive each notice if you disagree with either. You can do so solo or with the help of your Towson, Maryland, attorney.

Why wait though?

If you have a significant change in circumstances, do not wait to get behind on your Towson, Maryland, child support payments. If you know you are likely to fall behind, you can ask the family law court for a child support modification. This can prevent you falling behind on your child support payment and avoid the IRS altogether.