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MI county tests amnesty program for child support non-payers

According to recent reports, a new Cheboygan County amnesty program could potentially clear over 80 separate arrest warrants that had been issued for the apprehension of parents who failed to pay their monthly child support payments and had child support in arrears.

Michigan residents may find it helpful to know that the amnesty program was initiated to assist those parents who are delinquent in their child support payments get back on track with making timely and adequate monthly payments. The amnesty program is offered by the Friend of the Court for that county.

According to a spokesperson, all that needs to be done by any of the over 80 child support non-payers that have active arrest warrants issued is show up in person and make a one-time payment of either one percent of the balance they owe or $250. This action can get the parent's arrest warrant lifted. Additionally if a payment is made while the amnesty program is still ongoing, the parent would not receive any jail time.

Child support is for the well-being of the child, and is in the child's best interest. Thus, rather than arresting parents for failing to pay child support, under the amnesty program, authorities will encourage the parent to look for meaningful employment and make whatever child support payment they can. Furthermore, to avoid late payments, the office will help the parent set-up future payments.

According to officials familiar with the program there has been success with some individuals who have entered into a payment program, and they have continued to meet their obligation after making their one-time payment. The program is expected to last through April 11. So far, there are no plans to extend the deadline.

Source: Up North Live, "Child support amnesty program gives offenders chance to catch up," Nathan Edwards, Mar. 5, 2014

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