St Louis Criminal Non-Support Attorney

If you are more than 12 months in arrears on child support, it is a felony.

St. Louis criminal defense attorney W. Scott Rose has more than 20 years of experience practicing law, and can help you avoid prison and felony charges by defending your criminal non-support case.

Did You Know It’s A Crime Not To Pay Child Support? If You’re Behind More Than 12 Months On Payments – It’s A Felony. Rose Legal Services Can Help You Avoid Prison And Felony Charges By Defending Your Criminal Non-Support Case.

Prosecutors in the St. Louis area are filing more and more criminal cases for unpaid child support; the Prosecuting Attorney‘s Office of St. Louis County in Clayton has an especially active Child Support Enforcement Unit. In 2019, nearly 3,000 Missourians received criminal charges for failure to pay child support, with hundreds ending up in jail as a result. Under Missouri Law, “Criminal Non-Support” is a Class E Felony, subject to a term of imprisonment of up to four years at the Missouri Department of Corrections.

It helps NO ONE for a parent to go to prison for failure to pay child support. The parent cannot earn income in prison, which means the child (or custodial parent) can’t receive support payments during the term of incarceration.

Furthermore, going to prison does not eliminate the child support that is back due. In other words, a parent who owes child support cannot just choose to serve a prison term instead of paying because they will still owe the child support when released. Monthly child support obligations will continue to become due while the parent is in prison, so the arrears will actually increase during the prison term.

If you have had a criminal case filed against you for failure to pay child support, there are ways to deal with it and avoid going to jail or prison – even if there is already a warrant out for your arrest. Hire an experienced criminal non-support attorney right away.

Call attorney W. Scott Rose — Our team will work hard to ensure that you are released on bond to work and support your children. And if your monthly payments are more than you can afford, there are modification processes for those, too.

Rose Legal Services is here to help minimize your charges and get you back on a productive path for your future — Start your free case analysis now.


If you are facing criminal non-support charges in St. Louis, you can be charged with either a misdemeanor or a felony. The severity of the charges is based upon how many months in arrears the child support payments are. If payments are more than 12 months in arrears, prosecutors can pursue felony charges against you.


  • While in prison, parents are still financially responsible for their children. Any missed payments will continue to accumulate and still be owed upon release.
  • Even after serving jail time and paying off what is owed), you’ll be left with a criminal record that can hold you back from many important opportunities in life. It can be a huge obstacle when making changes to custody arrangements, looking for new employment, and ultimately, living the life that you want for yourself.

Criminal Non-Support (less than 12 months in arrears)

To convict you of this offense, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly:

  • Failed to provide adequate support;
  • For their child or stepchild;
  • The defendant was legally obligated to provide such support; and
  • And the child or stepchild is not otherwise emancipated by operation of law.

Criminal Non-Support (less than 12 months in arrears) is considered a Class A Misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,000.

Criminal Non-Support (12+ months in arrears)

To convict you of this offense, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly:

  • Failed to provide adequate support;
  • For their child or stepchild;
  • The defendant was legally obligated to provide such support;
  • The child or stepchild is not otherwise emancipated by operation of law; and
  • The total arrearage is in excess of an aggregate of twelve monthly payments due under an order of support issued by any court of competent jurisdiction or any authorized administrative agency.

Criminal Non-Support (12+ months in arrears) is considered a Class E Felony punishable by up to four years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

Facts You Should Know About Criminal Non-Support Crimes in Missouri

  • Many Prosecuting Attorney’s offices hire specific (highly experienced) prosecutors for criminal non-support crimes.
  • Even if the custodial parent is refusing your attempts to see your children, you can still be convicted for non-payment.
  • Some jurisdictions may set VERY high bond amounts (reflective of how much child support is due) — $15,000 in unpaid child support payments could equal a $15,000 bond amount.

How Can A Lawyer Help With My Criminal Non-Support Charges?

The repercussions of criminal non-support charges can dramatically affect the lives and livelihoods of already struggling parents. With over 20+ years of experience, W. Scott Rose has the know-how to combat your charges and work towards the best solution for your future.

Some of the ways a lawyer can help are:

  • Pursuing a reduction in your bond or having it reduced to a “no-money-down” bond. (So that you can get out of jail and continue working to pay off what is owed)
  • Driver’s license reinstatement.
  • Having the case completely dismissed.
  • Establishing a detailed payback plan and getting you out on probation (without a felony).

As soon as you can — Contact Rose Legal Services. They will immediately get to work on building an effective representation for you while providing you with sound advice to help you move forward in the best way possible.

Find The Best St. Louis Criminal Non-Support Attorney For Your Case

Look for an attorney that takes your future as seriously as YOU DO. Experienced in a range of criminal defense cases, including stealing, property damage, and domestic violence — Rose Legal Services will work hard to get you the best possible results. Let’s start your case off with a free consultation, take the time to thoroughly review and inspect your case, and create a STRONG defense.


If you have criminal charges related to child support — Take legal action today. Rose Legal Services exclusively defends clients against criminal defense and criminal non-support charges in St. Louis County, St. Louis City, and surrounding areas. With more than20 years of experience, rest assured we will work tirelessly & aggressively to defend you in the court of law.

  • Immediate & Effective Representation
  • Flat Fee Criminal Law Firm
  • Get The UNDIVIDED ATTENTION Your Case Needs
  • Take Legal Action TODAY
  • All Cases Begin With A FREE Consultation

You must retain a St. Louis criminal non-support attorney as soon as possible to help protect your future. Whether this is a first-time offense or you’ve been charged before, we can help you get the best possible results in your criminal non-support case — Start building your defense today with a free consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

In Missouri, claims of backpay for unpaid child support can be enforced if it is within 10 years of the last child support payment on record.

Absolutely! Your financial obligations do not end during your jail time or after. Once you are released, you will be expected (legally obligated) to continue paying your child support payments. Plus any back payments that were already owed or missed paying during your time incarcerated.

As soon as you know that you are unable to pay or are going to be unable to afford your payments, you need to reach out for assistance. You can work with the Family Support Division (FSD) in the Missouri Department of Social Services to create a plan to get you back on track. If the payments are simply too high to reasonably afford, we can help you explore what child support modification processes are available to you.

The State accused me of 3 felonies that someone else committed. I hired Scott, and he got the charges dismissed!

Scott, have helped me throughout this whole process mentally. You are really amazing – I thank you so much for helping me!

Mr. Rose really helped me out with a difficult situation. He was great to work with and worked hard to get me a good outcome. I would definitely recommend him to others.