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Failure to pay child support could impact immigration status

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2020 | Immigration |

When Tennessee residents think about the requirements for an individual to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, child support payments may be the last thing on their mind. However, when a person applies to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, one of the questions they are asked is if they have ever failed to pay child support or alimony.

One of the motives behind this question could be that the way a person views paying child support has an impact on whether they are of good moral character. The interesting thing about this question is that it encompasses more than court-ordered child support. It is based on the idea that a parent has the responsibility to care for their minor children.

This goes beyond an applicant’s having children living in the United States. Regardless of where the applicant’s children are, the moral obligation to provide for them remains. It doesn’t matter what the laws of the land where the children are currently living say about the matter.

The idea is that the responsibility to care for a child is not something that a parent has because the law puts it on them. Instead, it’s something that they have by virtue of being a parent. This is why the matter of child support is important when considering a person’s application to become a naturalized citizen.

Immigration law can be complicated. Failure to understand the regulations, paperwork and obligations required when applying for immigration could lead to a person’s immigration application being denied or their immigration standing being revoked. An attorney may help their client as they go through the immigration process. They may serve as a source of practical information and help the client avoid making mistakes that could negatively impact their immigration status.