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Non-payment of alimony is considered a crime (Judgment of the Supreme Court of March 17, 2021)

As Forcam Abogados explains, the non-payment of alimony has been considered a crime of economic violence, by the Supreme Court, who in a ruling dated March 17, 2021. The rapporteur, magistrate Magro Servet, determines in the judgment that such action is considered a crime by virtue of the fact that, according to the judgment: "it can be configured as a kind of economic violence, given that the breach of this obligation leaves the children themselves in a state of necessity in which, faced with their young age, and lack of self-sufficiency, need the maintenance of the person obligated to provide it, first because of a moral and natural obligation that the obligated person has and if this does not come, it will have to be due to judicial obligation ".

"All this determines - according to the statement of the rapporteur magistrate - that we can call these behaviors as" economic violence "when there are non-payments of alimony. And this, because it supposes the breach of an obligation that should not be required by law or by judicial resolution, but should be fulfilled by the conviction of the person obliged to cover the needs of their children; all this from the point of view of the approach that the obligation of natural law has the obligation to pay maintenance ".

The presentation continues, arguing: "if there is a breach of the obligation to provide them, this requires the parent who has them in custody to carry out an excess in their effort of care and attention to the children, depriving themselves of attending to their own needs to cover the obligations that the person obliged to do so does not verify ".

Case of non-compliance

The presentation refers to and emphasizes the fact that the obligation derived from the exercise of parental authority constitutes a duty, which should never be subjugated by the parents, clarifying that it must be the legislator who configures this obligation 'ex lege', and the courts those that resolve these conflicts that should not exist, due to the moral and natural requirement of the parent obliged not to leave the needs of their own children unsupplied, and without ever putting their wishes and / or preferences before those of those, since regarding these are not understood as a desire of will, but of necessity, that is to say: "they are not desires or preferences, but their needs"

Other aspects that are studied in the presentation, establishes that the burden of the obligation places the father who is in charge and care of the children, in a disadvantageous situation in relation to the other parent than by leaving the obligation aside. , places the caregiver parent in the situation of complying with the obligation because, as we said above, it is about meeting the needs of minors, in this case a need that is tied to the right of children and adolescents and the children's rights convention, Girl and adolescent to a balanced diet.

The magistrate emphasizes, regarding said situation: “if the alimony is not satisfied in the amount that was stipulated in the agreement or judicial resolution, it will be the parent who remains with them in custody who has to replace with their personal effort, as we have stated, the breach of the obligor, with which, in the end, a double victimization is exercised, namely: on the children as in need of food that they do not receive and on the parent who must replace the obligor in breach for having to cover the food that does not the one obliged to give them lends ”.

Said sentence is pronounced as a condemnation of a man who failed to pay alimony to his children, and was convicted of the crime of economic violence, stipulated in article 227 of the Penal Code, and whose sentence is the penalty of six months in prison.


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