Department of Health and Human Services

Stop paying incentives to State DHS for Child Support Collection

Our states collect child-support money and deposit it in a state fund, but the federal government pays most of the administrative costs and, therefore, dictates the way the system operates through mandates and financial incentives. The federal government pays 66 percent of the states' administrative overhead costs, 80 percent of computer and technology-enhancement costs, and 90 percent of DNA testing for paternity.

 

In addition, the states share in a nearly-half-billion-dollar incentive reward pool based on whatever the state collects. The states can get a waiver to spend this bonus money anyway they choose.

 

However, most of the child support owed by welfare-class fathers is uncollectible. Most are either unemployed or earn less than $10,000 per year.

 

So, in order to cash in on federal bonus money, build their bureaucracies and brag about successful child-support enforcement, the states began bringing into the government system middle-class fathers with jobs who were never (and probably would never be) on welfare. These non-welfare families have grown to 83 percent of child-support cases and 92 percent of the money collected, creating a windfall of federal money flowing to the states.

 

The federal incentives drive the system. The more divorces, and the higher the child-support guidelines are set and enforced (no matter how unreasonable), the more money the state bureaucracy collects from the feds.

 

Follow the money. The less time that non-custodial parents (usually fathers) are permitted to be with their children, the more child support they must pay into the state fund, and the higher the federal bonus to the states for collecting the money.

 

This incredibly corrupt system needs some major reform! As a father in this situation-I cannot scream loud enough about gross and intricate the level of victimization and abuse we have been dealt by the gov't simply for being in a custody situation!

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Idea No. 1672