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Dad's penalties include order to not father anymore children

New Jersey takes child support obligations seriously. Parents have a duty to provide for their minor children financially, especially if those financial obligations are court ordered. But sometimes, no matter what a judge declares, parents choose to ignore this duty and do not make child support payments. In the end, it is their children that are hurt by these choices.

Although there are varying ways to pursue child support enforcement, like wage garnishment or license revocation, courts have been known to get creative in establishing incentives for parents to make payments. One court in another state recently told one delinquent father that he was not allowed to parent anymore children until he pays his support obligations.

The case started last year at the probate court level where a judge put the father on five years of probation. The father was initially indicted for non-payment in 2011 and last year pleaded guilty to the charges.

As a condition of the probation, the judge also ordered that the man could not have anymore kids during that time. The man is already a father to four kids and he owes them nearly $100,000 in child support. The judge did say that the procreation ban would be lifted if the dad paid the support amount. If he violates this order, the father could face additional penalties like jail time.

This order did not sit well with the father who argued that the probate judge was violating his right to have children, even to have sex, since the only foolproof way to ensure he did not have any more children was to abstain from sex.

On appeal, the court upheld the ruling from the probate judge. The appeals court's decision did not address the appropriateness of the probate court order because it did not have enough information on the father's background. The court instead presumed that the community control sanctions were permissible and affirmed the decision surrounding the delinquent payments.

Source: The Washington Post, "Ohio appeals court tells man he can't have more kids until he pays for the ones he's got," Lindsey Bever, May 15, 2014

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