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Child support obligations and passport eligibility

On Behalf of | Aug 7, 2023 | Family Law

Failing to pay child support can result in many consequences for a non-custodial parent. The possibility of losing driving privileges, facing the loss of tax refunds and even the threat of arrest can make life challenging for parents who owe back support. However, other problems can surface when a parent falls behind on child support, such as the loss of passport eligibility.

It is important for parents to understand how passport denial works.

Passport problems as a result of unpaid child support

The U.S. Department of State goes over child support arrears and passport eligibility. If a parent owes at least $2,500 in back child support, they cannot obtain a U.S. passport. Parents who owe arrears exceeding $2,500 will have their passport application denied, and the government will not process their application until they make suitable arrangements with the child support agency in their state.

The government also revokes passports belonging to parents who owe back child support.

The consequences of losing a passport over child support

A non-custodial parent may need a passport for various reasons. Aside from losing the ability to go on a vacation that they have dreamed of for many years, the denial or revocation of a U.S. passport could prevent them from attending an important family event in a different country, such as their child’s wedding. Additionally, some parents have to miss out on crucial business trips because they cannot get a passport.

These challenges highlight the importance of staying current on child support and paying back child support to safeguard passport eligibility.