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Michigan county tries new approach to child support enforcement

There are a number of issues to deal with when it comes to going through a divorce. If children are involved, child support issues may complicate efforts to resolve a divorce. One of the most pressing concerns for the courts in divorce cases is ensuring that the health and welfare of the children is handled appropriately. This means that the court expends a lot of effort in securing the financial future of the child so that their needs are met, no matter the outcome of the divorce.

Michigan is taking a hands-on approach in handling delinquent child support payments. In Ottawa County authorities have implemented a program where people who are late in paying their child support will get a boot on their car in lieu of jail. Once the boot is placed on the vehicle, the car is immobile and the boot is not removed until the delinquent payments are satisfied. According to the authorities in Ottawa County, this type of child support enforcement has been very effective thus far. The county has collected over $17,000 in payments for custodial parents.

Courts take child support issues very seriously. Monthly payments must be made and they must be made on time, or there will be ramifications. From a court's perspective, there really is no excuse for failing to make child support payments. Because the courts use a child support formula to determine the amount of support that is to be paid, they recognize and are flexible if the payments cause financial hardship. The courts allow child support modifications in these situations.

Because the courts are willing to work with individuals who have to pay child support, it is very difficult to come up with an excuse that will justify nonpayment. As such, people need to understand and realize that the authorities appear to be utilizing more creative and harsher punishments to ensure that payments are made.

Source: WFMY News 2, "Parents Late With Child Support Gets Boot On Car In Michigan," March 6, 2013

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