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Connecticut Divorce Lawyer

posted in Child Support

on Friday, December 30, 2011.

After losing custody during a divorce, it can be hard for a noncustodial parent in Connecticut or elsewhere to willingly pay their former spouse the child support they have been awarded. But it is always best to make every attempt to pay the amount or seek a modification in court. Not paying is never a good idea.

According to some, more than $100 billion in unpaid child support was owed in the United States two years ago. Connecticut parents likely have contributed to this staggering amount of debt, which may start to decrease due to an emerging program that is gaining popularity in its experimental phase.

A recent study oversaw participants in a pilot program in another state called Families Forward. The plan allowed owed child support to be repaid with a rewarding benefit: For every dollar of child support debt that was repaid, 50 cents of debt owed to the state and 50 cents of debt owed to the family were forgiven. Both the parents had to agree to the plan.

According to the study, much of the $100 billion worth of child support debt will never be collected because it belongs to low-income individuals who cannot afford to repay. But those who participated in the Families Forward program were paying an average of $100 more than non-participants. They made more payments toward their debt, allowing them to pay it off faster than non-participants.

If adopted in more states, the program could alleviate some of the costs associated with child support collection techniques that many state agencies put a considerable amount of funding behind, which could cost more than the actual debt. Families Forward may be a new way for state governments to at least receive some of the debt that is owed.

Source: Milwaukee Courier, “Child support forgiveness programs can be effective in reducing debt,” Angela Yeager, Dec. 10, 2011

Tags: child support, divorce

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