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Child support collection, enforcement: Is there a better way?

On Behalf of | Apr 22, 2015 | Uncategorized

Here’s what can happen in many states — including Texas — when a noncustodial parent tasked with making child support payments fails to do so in the fully required amount at specified intervals:

  • wage garnishment
  • intercepted tax refunds
  • property lien
  • suspension of various licenses
  • incarceration

And that laundry list is far from comprehensive.

Here’s a relevant query concerning those cited possibilities. Although they are impressively coercive, are they really effective?

That is, do they up the odds that punished parents will perform better in the future? When exacted, do those penalties make life better for the custodial parents — most often mothers — waiting for money, or for the children requiring regular infusions of cash to ensure that they are adequately provided for?

A recent media piece on child support policies and related issues argues that a heavy stress on punishing persons tasked to pay is often counterproductive and in nobody’s best interests. While jailed, a parent obviously cannot make money. After being released from lock-up, many parents find that their criminal records militate against them securing jobs to provide for their kids.

And, notably, many states continue to add to the support amounts owed even while a parent is incarcerated and unable to earn income, which many people might argue is a wholly incomprehensible policy.

There may be a better way to think about and implement child support policies, notes the above-cited article. The progressive political blog ThinkProgress offers up a few provocative ideas, which we will detail in our next blog post.

We hope readers will find the information informative.


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