+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    rmeglior is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    10

    Arrears and Bi-weekly payments

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? PA

    Hello. I have a court order for child support/alimony in the amount of $3000/monthly and $100 for arrears. As I understand it arrears only come into play if a payment is late. Here's where I get confused. My payments come directly out of my paycheck on a biweekly basis (again via the court system). I'm being charged the arrears now because of the goofey math associated with biweekly payments vs monthly. So is this extra $100 going into a holding 'pool' of some sort until my pay checks catch up (2 months out of the year we get a third payment)? If not, is this simply a penalty charge of some sorts that I'll never see again? Any thoughts on the matter? Thanks for taking the time to read this and for your help!
  2. #2
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    65,552
    Quote Originally Posted by rmeglior View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? PA

    Hello. I have a court order for child support/alimony in the amount of $3000/monthly and $100 for arrears. As I understand it arrears only come into play if a payment is late. Here's where I get confused. My payments come directly out of my paycheck on a biweekly basis (again via the court system). I'm being charged the arrears now because of the goofey math associated with biweekly payments vs monthly. So is this extra $100 going into a holding 'pool' of some sort until my pay checks catch up (2 months out of the year we get a third payment)? If not, is this simply a penalty charge of some sorts that I'll never see again? Any thoughts on the matter? Thanks for taking the time to read this and for your help!
    I would guess that the arrears are not due to "the math" but more likely due to your support being backdated to a date earlier than the court date. Quite often support is backdated to the date it was filed for.
  3. #3
    rmeglior is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    10
    Thanks for the quick reply! I guess the one thing I would love clarification on for peace of mind is what an arrear is. With a credit card, if I'm late on a payment. I get hit with a late fee that I never see again. Is that what arrears are or are they something that goes into 'holding pen' into regular payments are caught up. Bottom line is that I want to make sure I'm ultimately paying the 3k a month and not 3100.

    Also, the backdate support was already resolved so I'm certain this isn't that amount. Thanks again!!
  4. #4
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    65,552
    Quote Originally Posted by rmeglior View Post
    Thanks for the quick reply! I guess the one thing I would love clarification on for peace of mind is what an arrear is. With a credit card, if I'm late on a payment. I get hit with a late fee that I never see again. Is that what arrears are or are they something that goes into 'holding pen' into regular payments are caught up. Bottom line is that I want to make sure I'm ultimately paying the 3k a month and not 3100.

    Also, the backdate support was already resolved so I'm certain this isn't that amount. Thanks again!!
    Arrears are support that should have been paid but are still outstanding. You need to look at your court orders to see what the arrearages represent.
  5. #5
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,845
    If your order requires you to pay $3000/month as your regular payments (and they're broken down between child support and alimony, right?), and $100 towards "arrears", then you were behind in payments at the time the order was issued.

    An arrears payment is something you "never see again" because it's intended to pay up the amount that was previously unpaid.

    As a concrete example, my ex is $3000 or so in arrears on child support. He's supposed to pay the ordered amount of X plus a smaller amount Y until that arrears no longer exists. There is no "pool".
  6. #6
    CSO286 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Once upon a time, far, far, away...
    Posts
    5,339
    Ok, so if you are ordered to pay 3000 per month and you get paid biweekly the math looks a little like this:


    3000 x 12 months: 36,000 annually

    The Income withholding order probably says something like:
    "If paid monthly, send 3,000
    If paid semi-monthly, send 1,500
    If paid biweekly, send 1,384.62"

    The way the money flows is that all through the year, you will be building an arrears balance. the first 3 paycheck month on my schedule occurs in July. by July, if you are paid biweekly, you will have paid: 13,846.20. so, by July, you would owe an arrears balance of 1153.80 in addition to the July obligation.
    You would end up overpaying in July by about $230.82, which would go into the "pool"(on hold, or in suspense) you mentioned. And it would cycle back around again to the next 3 payday month, which (again--by my schedule) occurs in December.

    By then you should be all caught up for the year.

    Of course you talk to your employer about doing a voluntary withholding of the $1500 bimonthly.

    There is an employer in my area who pay their employees on a biweekly cycle, but does the withholding on a semi-monthly one. That way in those 3 paycheck months, the NCPs who work there feel like it's a bonus almost.

    And the NCP is then always current on the support.
    Last edited by CSO286; 12-29-2010 at 09:01 PM. Reason: correct my terms
  7. #7
    CSO286 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Once upon a time, far, far, away...
    Posts
    5,339
    Quote Originally Posted by CJane View Post
    If your order requires you to pay $3000/month as your regular payments (and they're broken down between child support and alimony, right?), and $100 towards "arrears", then you were behind in payments at the time the order was issued.

    An arrears payment is something you "never see again" because it's intended to pay up the amount that was previously unpaid.

    As a concrete example, my ex is $3000 or so in arrears on child support. He's supposed to pay the ordered amount of X plus a smaller amount Y until that arrears no longer exists. There is no "pool".
    It's possible that the court decided to order an amount for the arrears payback. In some states it's usually an add'l 20%, unless the court order dictates otherwise.
  8. #8
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,845
    Quote Originally Posted by CSO286 View Post
    It's possible that the court decided to order an amount for the arrears payback. In some states it's usually an add'l 20%, unless the court order dictates otherwise.
    I'm confused by the scenario you presented above.

    I don't pay spousal support, but I do pay child support. I have it set up as a withholding from my paycheck, and I'm paid every other week (so, in some months, I'm paid 3 times). My obligation is around $250/month. I broke that down to 115.38 every two weeks - and I'm never considered to be in arrears. There is no additional obligation owed as a "catch up" payment.

    That said, in my state, one is not considered to be in arrears until the 15th of the month following the due date of the obligation. So, even in "short" months, there is another payment received by the 15th of the following month that "catches up" that missing $30 or so.
  9. #9
    CSO286 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Once upon a time, far, far, away...
    Posts
    5,339
    Quote Originally Posted by CJane View Post
    I'm confused by the scenario you presented above.

    I don't pay spousal support, but I do pay child support. I have it set up as a withholding from my paycheck, and I'm paid every other week (so, in some months, I'm paid 3 times). My obligation is around $250/month. I broke that down to 115.38 every two weeks - and I'm never considered to be in arrears. There is no additional obligation owed as a "catch up" payment.

    That said, in my state, one is not considered to be in arrears until the 15th of the month following the due date of the obligation. So, even in "short" months, there is another payment received by the 15th of the following month that "catches up" that missing $30 or so.
    In my state and the others that I am most familiar with, the payment becomes an arrears balance after the last day of the month, so there isn't a grace period there.

    And any payment that comes in always pays current first, so it's likely and expected that those who are paid biweekly will build a gradual arrears balance until the 3 payday months.
  10. #10
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,845
    Quote Originally Posted by CSO286 View Post
    In my state and the others that I am most familiar with, the payment becomes an arrears balance after the last day of the month, so there isn't a grace period there.

    And any payment that comes in always pays current first, so it's likely and expected that those who are paid biweekly will build a gradual arrears balance until the 3 payday months.
    Even if that's the case though, the expectation is that you'd be "caught up" by the end of the year, due to the 3 payday months.

    If OP has an ordered amount to pay towards arrears, then it's almost guaranteed that there was an arrears amount at the time of the order, not an anticipated arrears amount that would eventually be caught up by making the regular payments.

    I don't think there can be an order to pay an extra $100/month towards arrears that do not exist yet.
  11. #11
    CSO286 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Once upon a time, far, far, away...
    Posts
    5,339
    Quote Originally Posted by CJane View Post
    Even if that's the case though, the expectation is that you'd be "caught up" by the end of the year, due to the 3 payday months.

    If OP has an ordered amount to pay towards arrears, then it's almost guaranteed that there was an arrears amount at the time of the order, not an anticipated arrears amount that would eventually be caught up by making the regular payments.

    I don't think there can be an order to pay an extra $100/month towards arrears that do not exist yet.
    True, and my experience would be that the CSED would not attempt collection on arrears balance by tacking on the add'l 20% or 100$ unless the arrears balance is equal to or greater than a full month's obligation.

    So my best inference on the 100$ is that the court is setting a payment against any possible arrears balance to be collected should arrears (in excess of a full month's obligation) accrue.

Similar Threads

  1. Weekly vs. Monthly Payments
    By MikeInVa10 in forum Child Support
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-04-2012, 05:16 PM
  2. Employer changed payroll from weekly to bi-weekly
    By TechSpec in forum Wage & Salary Issues
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 07-23-2011, 01:42 PM
  3. Arrears payments cap.
    By daiseychik64 in forum Child Support
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-12-2008, 08:16 AM
  4. Weekly payments to the marshal
    By mgnet2000 in forum Debt Collections
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-01-2005, 04:04 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

© 1995-2012 Advice Company, All Rights Reserved

FreeAdvice® has been providing millions of consumers with outstanding advice, free, since 1995. While not a substitute for personal advice from a licensed professional, it is available AS IS, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms & Conditions Of Use.