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Is your ex-spouse skipping child support with contract work?

If your ex-spouse has standard employment in Texas, with a consistent paycheck, his or her wages may be garnished in order to make child support payments. This is a common tactic used to get money from people who skip payments or do not pay on time. Since the money is removed by the employer, before they even get paid, they can’t keep it for themselves.

However, one man says that people he has employed sometimes quit their jobs in order to get around this. He runs a company called Professional Janitorial Service. He has noticed that some of his workers put in their two-weeks’ notice after the garnishments began, using a variety of excuses.

He has checked back in with these workers to see where they’re going, and he said he’s seen many of them working as independent contractors, which means they get a 1099 and not a W2, so their wages won’t be garnished. They are simply paid by the job and not technically employed, so there is no employer who can be ordered to deduct from their wages. He says that others are also taking illegal money under the table and lying about their wages to get around paying.

Part of the problem, according to some, is that these independent contractors are actually employees; they don’t have the freedom that actual contractors have to decide when and where they want to work. They are simply being misclassified so that they can duck the child support payments.

If your ex has not been paying child support, make sure you know what legal options are open to you.

Source: The Texas Tribune, “Ducking Child Support by Becoming a “Contractor”,” Julián Aguilar, April. 02, 2015

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