A child growing up in a single-parent household is more likely to be poor because the family only has one income. Furthermore, the earning power of that parent may be reduced because of a relatively low level of education. Government data reveals that about 40 percent of children live with parents who are not married, which has gone up from about 33 percent in 2000.
In general, custodial parents who are least likely to receive support from a child's other parent are those who are in lower income brackets and are not married. In many cases, this is because the other parent is struggling financially and may have nothing to provide for that child. However, when both parents contribute financially and emotionally, their children tend to be better behaved. Children also tend to have higher levels of cognitive development.
Research has shown a link between child support payments and better relationships between fathers and their children. This may benefit the child because he or she has the emotional support of that parent, which may be just as important as the financial support. When absent parents pay child support, it may also reduce the stress on a custodial parent, which may also benefit the child.
When a noncustodial parent fails to comply with a child support order, the best interests of the child are often placed in jeopardy. Therefore, parents who are not receiving child support payments in a timely manner may wish to seek legal counsel in order to learn what options to enforce the order and collect the past due amounts may be available.