The United States Census Bureau has released a new report entitled "Support Providers: 2010," which includes child support data drawn primarily from the Survey of Income and Program Participation. According to the report, non-custodial parents across the U.S. paid an average of $430 in child support each month, or $5,150 each year. The SIPP was conducted by the Census Bureau in order to collect and record information about the economic and social state of American households.

According to data from the state Division of Child Support Enforcement, Virginia has been largely successful in its efforts to improve child support collection. The state collected an all-time high of $648 million in support payments in fiscal year 2011, marking a 2.3 percent uptick compared to 2010.

Virginia has a strong history of collecting delinquent payments as well, having collected $33.5 million in back child support in 2011 alone. This makes it especially crucial for non-custodial parents struggling with unaffordable support obligations in Virginia to seek child support modification or other forms of assistance.

According to the Census Bureau data, all U.S. states collectively brought in approximately $41.7 billion in all types of support payments, including those for parents and other family members. Of that sum, about 59 percent child support was paid by 4.8 million individuals for children under the age of 21. Around 15 percent of those parents were female, while the remaining 85 percent were male. Women paid a yearly average of $3,500 compared to $5,450 for men. Around 75 percent of these parents had court orders requiring them to pay child support. Most of these payments went toward the care of one child, with about 30 percent for two children and 10 percent for three or more.

Child support is intended to provide financial stability for a custodial parent to adequately support their child. Money collected for support can be used to provide safe transportation, healthy food and housing. While many child support obligors are resentful about the monthly expense, the bottom line is that every child needs to be supported by their parents. If funds are not collected from a child's non-custodial parent then often times the state needs to help the would-be recipient financially.

Source: Sacramento Bee, "Monthly Child Support Payments Average $430 per Month in 2010, Census Bureau Reports," U.S. Census Bureau, June 19, 2012