Can the IRS use my refund for child support?
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Can the IRS use my refund for child support?

On Behalf of | Nov 17, 2022 | Child Support |

When you are behind on your bills, your child support payments may soon follow. However, back in Lawrenceville, Georgia, child support payments can have unique consequences for those who owe it. For one, the Internal Revenue Service can use your refund to pay your back child support.

Federal Income Tax Refund Offset Program

The Federal Income Tax Refund Offset Program is the program that can take your IRS refunds for back child support you owe to Georgia. In this program, once Lawrenceville or state officials alert the IRS of your back child support, you will be enrolled into the Federal ITRO Program.

Initial notice

While the back-end process is largely unseen, once you have been entered into the Federal ITRO Program, you will receiver a Pre-Offset Notice. This notice will include the amount owed. It will also include where to appeal both the amount owed and your inclusion in the program.

You will only receive one Pre-Offset Notice. Even if multiple refunds will be taken, you will only receive one Pre-Offset Notice. And, you will remain in the Federal ITRO Program until your entire back child support amount is paid.

Notice once the refund is taken

When you have a refund taken, you will receive an Offset Notice from the Federal ITRO Program. This will include the amount taken and where to appeal the amount.

If you filed your tax return with your current spouse, and the entire refund is taken, your spouse may get a portion of that refund back. Specifically, your new spouse will need to complete and file IRS form 8379-Injured Spouse Claim and Allocation with the IRS office on the Offset Notice.

Avoid the entire situation

An easier option than fighting the IRS is to ask for a child support modification order from the Lawrenceville, Georgia, court that issued the original order. If your financial circumstances have changed, and you will not be able to pay your child support, let your lawyer know. They can file an amendment request prior to you falling behind.