Child support action against 9/11 hero of interest in California

A man who is considered a hero to many for his efforts on behalf of 9/11 victims is now being accused of failing to pay his court-ordered child support. The man has worked to gain funds for survivors of the terrorist attack that took the lives of many from across the country. California residents may be interested to learn that now his children assert that he owes $81,421 in back child support payments.

The child support case has spanned at least two states. In her claim, one of the man's daughters notes that he failed to continue a relationship with his three children after divorcing their mother in 1996.

The mother of the children died of cancer in 2010. At that time, her boyfriend attempted to gain custody of the child who was still a minor, but the father opposed such an action. However, the adult daughter, who was eventually granted custody of her sister, asserts that he never paid the child support that was ordered at the time of her parents' divorce.

As many in California are aware, child support orders are mandatory. Without a support modification approved by the court, a non-custodial parent is required to make monthly payments to the custodial parent of a child. This is true regardless of whether the custodial parent is the father or the mother. When these payments are not made, the custodial parent can suffer financially as they try to support themselves and the kids. When a person in our state finds that they are in a situation similar to the one in this case, they may wish to complete a review of all available materials to understand what rights they could have in collection of any overdue child support.

Source: New York Post, "Kids suing 9/11 advocate dad T.J. Gilmartin over unpaid child support," Kathianne Boniello, Oct. 21, 2012

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