Presentation on theme: "WHATEVER CAN BE DONE WITH THOSE “HARD-TO-ENFORCE” CHILD SUPPORT CASES"— Presentation transcript:
1 WHATEVER CAN BE DONE WITH THOSE “HARD-TO-ENFORCE” CHILD SUPPORT CASES W. Scott Rosenberg, Magistrate, Davidson County Juvenile Court (TN)Rosalyn Guy McCorkle, Assistant County Solicitor, Allegheny County (PA)Nicholas Palos, Support Magistrate, Kings County (Brooklyn, NY) Family CourtRich Narcini, Chief, Child Support Enforcement, New Jersey Judiciary
2 OBJECTIVES OF PRESENTATION Address issues of notice and due process requirements in order to proceed to court based enforcementSpark discussion as to whether recent developments have resulted in a more favorable environment for the non-paying party where the case presents enforcement difficultiesExplore some lesser used remedies which may lead to effective court based enforcement against self-employed individuals.
3 METHODOLOGY An individual jurist will discuss one of the objectives. The remaining panelists may also add to the initial discussion from their own state’s perspectiveThe panelists encourage audience participation. Please ask your questions or offer your comments.
5 It all begins with Service of Process The plaintiff shall furnish the person making the service with such copies of the summons and complaint as are necessary. Service shall be made as follows:Upon an individual other than an unmarried infant or an incompetent person, by delivering a copy of the summons and of the complaint to the individual personally,or if he or she evades or attempts to evade service, by leaving copies thereof at the individual's dwelling house or usual place of abode with some person of suitable age and discretion then residing therein, whose name shall appear on the proof of service,or by delivering the copies to an agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive service on behalf of the individual served.
6 It all begins with Service of Process Service by mail of a summons and complaint upon a defendant may be made by the plaintiff, the plaintiff's attorney or by any person authorized by statute. ….Such person shall send, postage prepaid, a certified copy of the summons and a copy of the complaint by registered return receipt or certified return receipt mail to the defendant. ….The original summons shall be used for return of service of process pursuant to Rule 4.03(2). Service by mail shall not be the basis for the entry of a judgment by default unless the record contains a return receipt showing personal acceptance by the defendant or by persons designated by Rule 4.04 or statute. …
7 It all begins with Service of Process When service of a summons, process, or notice is provided for or permitted by registered or certified mail under the laws of Tennessee and the addressee or the addressee's agent refuses to accept delivery and it is so stated in the return receipt of the United States Postal Service, the written return receipt if returned and filed in the action shall be deemed an actual and valid service of the summons, process, or notice. Service by mail is complete upon mailing. For purposes of this paragraph, the United States Postal Service notation that a properly addressed registered or certified letter is “unclaimed,” or other similar notation, is sufficient evidence of the defendant's refusal to accept delivery.
8 Dedicated IV-D Warrant Officers Employed by the Court.Dedicated full time to serving only IV-D processHave the authority to execute arrest orders.Unique uniforms that are recognized in the community.Hard working, Relentless. Operate under performance measures.Have access to state computer for updated locate information.Have access to the criminal justice information system.Returns are full of valuable information.
9 When the Respondent evades service!! One way to serveby leaving copies thereof at the individual's dwelling house or usual place of abode with some person of suitable age and discretion then residing therein, whose name shall appear on the proof of service,But what do you do when the person at the home says the Respondent doesn’t live there…..and the petitioner says she saw him there yesterday??Another approach is to issue a citation for contempt to the person at the door.
10 Leading AttachmentIn addition to serving a summons Tennessee provides another method of serving a citation for contempt. We call it the “Leading Attachment”. This statutory tool is helpful especially for a Respondent who has a history of contempt or a history of not appearing.
12 Leading AttachmentT.C.A (f)(2)….if a parent is more than thirty (30) days in arrears, the clerk of the court may, …, issue a summons or, in the discretion of the court, an attachment for such parent, setting a bond of not less than two hundred fifty dollars ($250) or, in the discretion of the court, up to the amount of the arrears, for such other proceedings as may be held in the matter. In addition, the court may, at any time, require an obligor parent to give security by bond, with sufficient sureties approved by the court, or, alternatively, in the absence of the judge from the court, approved by the clerk of the court, for payment of past, present, and future support due under the order of support. If the obligor parent thereafter fails to appear or fails without good cause to comply with the order of support, such bonds may be forfeited and the proceeds from the bonds paid to the court clerk and applied to the order of support.
13 Child Support HotlineBecause we have dedicated IV-D warrant officers they are able to work beyond the traditional shift. We have one officer on call at all times.For the hard to serve individuals we give the petitioner a “Hotline Card” . This number can be used 24/7 to serve or arrest a respondent.
16 INCARCERATION Nash v. Herbster, 932 A.2d 183 (Pa. Super. 2007) Plunkard v. McConnell, 962 A.2d 1227 (Pa. Super. 2008)
17 Unemployment Pa. Rules of Civil Procedure 1910.19(f) Modify or Terminate a charging order if:order cannot be enforced under state lawObligor is unable to pay, has no known income or assetsThere is no reasonable prospect that obligor will be able to pay in the foreseeable future
18 Low income obligors Pa. Rules of Civil Procedure 1910.16-2(e)(1)(C) If income is no greater than $ per month, Court may order support only after considering the obligor’s actual living expenses
19 Court Required Employment Search Court may require obligor to seek employment through a court sanctioned employment programIf the Debtor refuses to comply with requirement
20 Court Required Employment Search Court may sentence the non-compliant individual to a period of incarceration for “indirect criminal contempt”This applies even if the directive to participate in the court-sanctioned employment program is made prior to the establishment of an order of support
22 Enforcing support obligations against the self-employed provide unique challenges Income executions may be ineffective depending on the structure of the obligor’s businessSole Proprietorship (Schedule C filer)PartnershipCorporationSubchapter SSubchapter CIncarceration may be self-defeatingCoercive purposeMay actually trigger closure of business
23 Remedies which court may use to enforce support obligations against self-employed individuals Where the Court finds a Willful Failure to ComplyIn Any ProceedingSequestration of PropertyUndertaking or Performance BondProbation
24 Sequestration/Separation of Property N.Y. Fam. Ct. Act 4574 Conditions must be metAn order of support is made under this article, ANDObligor has failed to obey it, ANDEither leaves or threatens to leave the state , ANDAn application for an order of sequestration is made.Property being sequestered must be within the state.Real and Personal Property are subject to sequestration
25 Sequestration/Separation of Property N.Y. Fam. Ct. Act 429Order of sequestration may be made at any time during a proceeding under Article 4 of the Family Court ActIf the respondent is not within the state, or cannot be found therein, or is concealing himself or herself therein, so that process cannot be personally served upon the respondent,Order or orders directing the sequestration of property, both real and personal and whether tangible or intangible, within the state may made without notice.Appoint a received thereof, or by injunction or otherwise take the same into its possession and control.Property and income generated by the propertyFunds used to support children of marriage or spouseIf income generated by property is insufficient to meet obligation. Court may permit receiver to mortgage or sell the propertyIn the case f real property, court may direct spouse to occupy property rent freePermits court to direct chattel to be turned over to occupying spouse
26 Undertaking Surety for performance Governed by N.Y. Family Court Act 471 et seq.Written undertaking with sufficient surety approved by the court; ORCash posted to secure compliance.A definite period, not to exceed three years .Principal of such undertaking shall not exceed the total payments for support required for three years.May be extended beyond term for good cause shown.
27 Probation Governed by N.Y. Family Court Act 456 When the order is enteredAfter a finding that failure to comply was willfulMay last for as long as an order of support, order of protection or order of visitation appliesN.Y. Family Court Act 454(3)(c) references the Criminal Procedure LawProbation governed by Article 410 of the Criminal Procedure LawMust specify the conditions of probationWritten copy of conditions must be given to person placed on probation
28 Contact Us Rich Narcini Nicholas Palos Rosalyn Guy-McCorkle W. Scott Rosenberg