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The role of the state in child support payments

Minnesota parents who are divorced may have a formal child support agreement in place. This means the state will be in charge of disbursing child support payments as well as enforcing payment. If the parent receiving child support also gets welfare in the form of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, the government may be reimbursed using the child support amount, or the amount might be passed to the family.

According to research, custodial parents who are on welfare are also more likely to receive child support when there is more pass-through of child support. Furthermore, more generous policies in this regard help families better transition to work from welfare, encourage fathers to pay support, and lead to families' greater financial security.

The state disbursement unit might collect child support from a parent's employer or from other sources. Generally, its procedures are automated, and it has a limited amount of time in which to disburse payments.

Usually, a noncustodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent. One advantage of a formal child support agreement is that it gives a person who is not receiving child support that is owed a legal framework through which delinquent payments can be pursued. If a parent has fallen behind on support, the parent's wages, tax refunds or other sources of income might be garnished. If a parent is unable to keep up with child support payments, it is possible to apply for a modification in support based on a change in circumstances. An example of a situation that could lead to a lowered child support payment is if the parent has lost a job. However, if the parent is simply mismanaging money or there are other issues, the court will not necessarily reduce the amount owed.

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Juvenile Criminal
Defense Strategies

Christa Jacqueline Groshek
© 2012 Aspatore Books from
Thomson Reuters Westlaw.
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