November 16, 2017

Child Support Enforcement Improvement


RESOLVED, That the American Bar Association endorses the recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Interstate Child Support to improve the interstate establishment and enforcement of child support orders.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That the American Bar Association:

(a) Opposes the federalization of child support establishment, modification or enforcement.

(b) Supports strengthening establishment, modification and enforcement remedies through reform of the present state-based system.

(c) Urges Congress to pass legislation and to give priority to the following recommendations of the Interstate Commission:

1. Ensure uniform laws and procedures in interstate cases by mandating that states and territories enact verbatim the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA), effective on a specific date;

2. Amend the IRS W-4 form for reporting exemption claims to require new employees to report child support obligations and payment through withholding, in order to expedite the location of obligors and enforcement through income withholding;

3. Require employers to honor income withholding orders/notices issued by any state;

4. Establish a national network for the exchange of locate information for the establishment, enforcement and modification of support orders, and for the enforcement of visitation orders;

5. Establish minimum staffing standards for child support agencies;

6. Provide training to child support caseworkers, court administrators, private and public attorneys, and judges involved in child support cases;

7. Require states and territories to have laws and procedures for civil voluntary parentage acknowledgment;

8. Ensure that children receive adequate health care coverage by mandating that the insurance industry cooperate to provide coverage for all eligible children, regardless of their residence or the marital status of their parents;

9. Extend the availability of enforcement remedies currently only available to IV-D cases (handled by state and territory child support agencies) to cases brought by private attorneys on behalf of custodial parents and to pro se parties;

10. Conduct a study to determine the reasons for nonpayment of support; and

11. Strengthen enforcement remedies against the self-employed.