Workers’ Compensation and Your Kid’s Child Support

Workers' Compensation and Your Kid's Child Support from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

Parents work hard to keep a roof over their children’s heads. You do everything correctly: pay the bills, cook, clean and make sure your child has everything he needs. But then all of a sudden, a tragedy strikes and you’re injured on-the-job.

Being out of work and having an injury that is nagging is never ideal.

And being divorced, you have to pay child support to cover your kid’s essential items. Will workers’ compensation cover these costs? Every state has its own laws, which you’ll want to research to make sure that you’re within your state’s own laws.

Workers’ Compensation is Wage Replacement

New York, Alabama and most other states view your workers’ compensation benefits as a direct wage replacement. You have workers comp insurance so that you can still maintain a near-same lifestyle Both of these states will consider workers’ comp benefits as income.

You won’t need to pay taxes on this income. You still need to make your child support payments or risk being in trouble with the courts at this time. Since workers’ compensation benefits aren’t the same as your normal pay, you can request an adjustment to your payment schedule.

An adjustment will:

  • Temporarily lower child support payments

If you’re out of work indefinitely, you can request a permanent adjustment to child support. Expect your ex to fight these changes if you don’t have a good relationship with him or her.

Death and Workers’ Compensation for Your Children

Alabama, and again you’ll need to check your state’s laws, does allow dependents to continue to receive your workers’ compensation benefits after your death. The dependents must have been receiving payments from the claim directly.

If you die due to your injuries, the state pays the benefits to these dependents for up to 500 weeks.

But you can also expect the process of kids receiving your benefits to be challenged. Challenges will come from:

  • Employers
  • Insurance

Surviving family members can seek legal representation in these cases, too.

Wage Garnishment

It’s possible that the state you live in will garnish your wages automatically. New York’s Workers’ Compensation Board will deduct money from the non-custodial parent’s benefit check. The money deducted will then be sent to the Division of Child Support Enforcement. The Division’s job is to then forward the check to the custodial parent.

Wage garnishment ensures that child support payments continue to be paid to the custodial parent. Non-custodial parents can also seek legal representation if they’re not receiving the payments they agreed to in their child support agreement.

Lump sum settlements are also possible for anyone injured on-the-job. When a settlement is provided, this settlement may have a lien placed against it if the person is behind on their payments.

The Department of Social Services will get involved if payments are late, put a lien on the settlement and then make sure that the past child support payments are satisfied before releasing a settlement.

Workers’ compensation benefits ought to be used to pay child support payments, and depending on the state’s laws, custodial parents may have protections that ensure they’re paid benefits.

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