Tips for keeping child support records

If you're ordered to pay child support, it's a very good idea to keep accurate records of every payment that you make. There have been stories of people claiming they were never paid when they actually were, all because money got tight and they needed extra cash. With no evidence on hand, you could end up paying twice, or being accused of being behind on your payments, so records are crucial. These tips can help.

1. Pay with checks, not with cash. It's often tempting to pay in cash because it's quick and easy, and your ex may even request it so that the money can be spent right away, but there's no paper trail. You're better off to pay with a check.

2. Pay online. There are many different apps you can use to pay with, or you could just use a system like PayPal, that allows you to send money in Arizona for free. The system automatically creates a report for each payment and you can put in a note saying what it's for. The system also records that the payment was accepted.

3. Save email messages. When payments are sent online, you're likely going to get an email notification about it before the money is transferred out of your bank. Create a special folder and save those emails as extra proof of payment.

Planning in advance and using an electronic system may be slightly more work to get set up than paying in cash, but it's usually faster and easier once everything is in place. If you're ever accused of not paying and you know you did, be sure you know your rights in Arizona.

Source: Support Pay, "How to Keep Good Child Support Records," Sheri Atwood, accessed April 28, 2016

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