Noncustodial parents are generally required to pay child support to help custodial parents raise a child. However, it is possible that a parent who is receiving support can request that those payments be stopped. This generally occurs when parents choose to get back together after a separation or divorce. If the parents are back together, there is no reason to mandate a certain level of support.
If the parent who is paying child support experiences a change in circumstances, that parent could choose to ask to modify an existing order. In some cases, the custodial parent could agree to stop receiving payments altogether in an effort to help that person. Conversely, the custodial parent could find him or herself coming into an inheritance or otherwise having more money at his or her disposal. This could result in that parent asking to put an end to support payments.
It is important to note that a custodial parent is not obligated to voluntarily ask to terminate a support order. It is also worth mentioning that a parent who receives government aid cannot ask to put an end to a support order. Individuals who receive support could choose to return the payments to a noncustodial parent if that person is experiencing financial issues. Finally, a court could reject such a request if ending support is not in the child's best interest.
When making a child support order, a court will often look to meet the best interests of the child. In addition to making an order, courts generally take whatever steps are necessary to enforce it. This could mean that those who fail to make payments could face penalties such as jail time or having their wages garnished. In some cases, tax refunds or other benefits will be seized.