Delinquent child support payments remain the most common reason for wage garnishments in California and around the country according to a report from the ADP Research Institute. The study, which was based on the anonymous payroll data of 12 million American workers, reveals that about one in 14 workers in the United States have their wages garnished, and 71 percent of them are men. Other common reasons include unpaid student loans, bankruptcies and tax levies.

However, the ADPRI study, which was released on Sept. 27, also reveals that some workers are more likely to face garnishes than others. In the Midwest, more than one in four men employed in the manufacturing sector have their wages garnished, and many of them are making payments on more than one financial obligation. Garnishments are also more common among workers who produce goods than they are among those employed in the service sector.

Manufacturers tend to have large work forces and often build their factories in Southern and Midwestern states, and the ADPRI study indicates that workers in these areas are more likely to have their paychecks garnished. However, even sizable companies in the service sector deal with more garnish requests per employee than their smaller competitors. The report also reveals that larger employers are more likely to make court-ordered payroll deductions for delinquent student loans and unpaid tax levies than smaller companies.

Experienced family law attorneys may seek to settle child support disputes before court intervention is required. When noncustodial parents become resentful and truculent, attorneys may explain that judges primarily concern themselves with the best interests of the child and make rulings designed to prevent children from becoming the responsibility of the state. They could also point out that failing to meet child support obligations can lead to problems renewing driver’s licenses, lottery winnings or tax refunds being held back and incarceration.