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Child support enforcement technology could see an upgrade

States may see some support from the federal government for an important program that supports the well-being of children. Currently, each state is responsible to monitor and enforce child support payments from individuals in their own location. A proposed federal program would create an IT service that would take on these duties for all 50 states, making states like Texas not responsible to maintain its own program. 

Since 1995, a law known as the Family Support Act has mandated that each state have a system in place to monitor and enforce child support payments. States have struggled to implement programs that fulfill the requirements of the law, with at least one state giving up after failing to do so for several years. When states are successful, the federal government often reimburses a significant portion of the funds. 

As a cost-savings measure, the Department of Health and Human Services has requested $63 million in 2019 to create the Child Support Technology Fund, which will purchase a new system for monitoring support payments at the state level. The program will then be made available for states to use, and will prevent the federal government from spending additional money to support a program of each state's creation. It is unclear just how soon this program would be live. 

Advances in technology are making it easier to track and enforce child support. With the new proposed federal program, each state may finally have an effective system in place. Child support enforcement is necessary when a parent avoids paying for the care and maintenance of children. A parent in Texas who is having difficulty getting ordered payments may wish to have help in retrieving them. Many people choose to consult with a family law attorney for more help with recovering child support payments. 

Source:, "A shared service for child support enforcement?", Troy K. Schneider, Feb. 13, 2018

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