How Long Can I Collect Back Child Support?

Do you want to collect back child support?  Do you owe back child support?

A lot of parents think that since the child turned 18, they don’t owe anymore child support, but …

You can collect child support for 10 years from the date that the last support payment is due. 

Point to the law:

MCL 600.5809(4) is clear.  The limitations period to bring an action to enforce a child support order is:

10 years from the date that the last support payment is due under the support order.  Regardless of whether or not the last payment is made.

Find if the order or lien to back child support has a date within 10 years from the date the last payment was due.  If it does, the depending on how you look at it, either you can collect, or you must pay.


The last child support payment is due on 10/15/05, (child’s 18th birthday).

The limitations period begins on 10/15/05.

The limitations period ends on 10/15/15.

The lien is ordered on 1/13/15.

The lien is valid because the lien is ordered before the end of the 10-year limitations period.

Child Support Enforcement:

Pay your child support.  Collection processes are automated so that when you owe a threshold amount of unpaid child support, most state and Federal agencies are automatically informed.

Your failure to pay may turn into something worse, like:

An IRS lien or a state tax lien;

A driver’s license suspension;

Your passport may be denied; and

Your automobile may be seized.


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