Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Child support enforcement

By Kyle Richardson

PLATTSBURGH—Children are the focal point when it comes to enforcing Child Support.  The purpose of Child Support is not to punish or inconvenience a parent, but to ensure children receive the necessary financial support from both parents.
            According to, If you are a teenage father, your child and New York state sees you not as a teenager but a father, therefore you are responsible to provide for your child. You are required to pay child support until your child is 21 years old, even if you are a student or do not have a job. Even if the mother gets married or receives temporary assistance you are still obligated to pay child support. 
            “Child support should uplift the family and sometimes hurt and emotions from divorce or separation stand in the way of doing what's best for the child,” said Derrick Denteh, Plattsburgh resident and school counselor. “If the amount asked is incompatible to the financial stability of the parent then I think there should be a compromise, in some instances parents have used it for their own benefit.”
            To apply for child support you have to go to your local Child Support Enforcement Program and they will help you find absent parents, legally prove who is the father, obtain child support orders, enforce child support orders and collect and pay out child support. 
            You are required by law to pay your child support.  If you do not pay, the amount you owe adds up and is called arrears which collect interest. Child support collects arrears and interest by garnishing your wages, take your state and federal income tax refund, seize your bank account, suspend your driver's license, deny your passport renewal, suspend your professional and occupational license and request jail time.
            Jade, local resident, agrees with child support but acknowledges flaws that may be in the system. “I agree with child support; however, as far as the system is actually run, the sole beneficiary should be the child and there are many flaws that don’t make it fair for not only the parents but the children as well.”
            The Kansas Supreme Court adopted new child support guidelines this year.  Child support payments are expected to increase up to 3.5 percent under these new guidelines. Federal law requires states to update their child support guidelines every four years. Although the new guidelines won't affect existing court orders, it is still a topic of concern.
            “It just depends on how good the relationship between the father and mother is.  If he or she is willing to have an agreement upon visitation and money, there no need for a court to get involved.  No court should have a decision on how parents should raise their child,” said Jalyn Brown, student at Long Island University.
“I agree with child support, but mothers should have to prove that those payments are spent on their child,” said Majestic Griggs, student at Plattsburgh.
Many people have the mindset that child support only favors mothers.  The system says that its sole purpose is to benefit children; however, most children are in the custody of their mother who is the one receiving the checks.  The problem people have is that there is no system in place to prove those checks are being spent on the child.
            In the entertainment industry, this is a big concern. Women seeking out wealthy men and reap hundreds of thousands of dollars in child support. The U.S. Census Bureau reported that the median household income was $51,759 in 2014. Where is all that extra money going?
            The inherent bias in the child support system is a growing concern for men in this society.  Although all women aren't seeking personal benefit, the system leaves room for manipulation.

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