Changes to child support coming: Part II

On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C. posted in Child Support on Thursday, March 1, 2012

In our previous post, we wrote about the changes to federal benefits that could affect thousands of people in Missouri.

The federal government will in a year change to electronic payments for Social Security, veterans and disability benefits. That new way of transferring funds might well mean hundreds of thousands of people across the nation will lose their benefits to pay owed child support — in some cases, child support that is owed for children now grown.

One case cited in the Washington Post article we read on the change was of a 44-year-old man who has had his bank account frozen repeatedly over the past three years. He’s apparently unable to work because of a back injury suffered a dozen years ago. That injury caused him to fall behind on his child support payments; he now owes $7,000.

However, the money isn’t to go to his 22-year-old son, but to the state of New York for reimbursement of welfare assistance his son received years ago.

That’s because states can seize federal benefits from people who owe child support as repayment for welfare assistance provided to their children.

With the paper checks currently issued, the parents who owe child support can shield their income by cashing the checks rather than depositing them in the bank.

In a year, they’ll no longer be able to do that, according to the Post article.

The Treasury Department will deposit the funds directly into the accounts electronically or load the money onto prepaid debit cards. Either way, experts say, the funds can be seized by state child support agencies.

Source: Washington Post: “Move to electronic benefits could leave thousands who owe child support with no income,” Feb. 26, 2012

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