In any relationship child custody, child support and parenting time disputes between parents could arise at some point before the child emancipates. Every situation is different, but generally family courts apply the “best interest of the child” standard to determine which parent should get custody.

Our Michigan readers are likely aware that typically the parent who gets custody of the child is referred to as the custodial parent. The non-custodial parent is usually court-ordered to pay monthly child support to help the custodial parent raise the child. In some cases, despite being ordered to pay child support, for reasons ranging from job loss, reduced income, other substantial changes in circumstances, a non-custodial parent may not be able to meet their monthly child support obligation. In such an event, the child support enforcement agency may ask a court to issue a warrant for arrest, and the parent may face jail time and other penalties for delinquent payments or failure to pay child support altogether.

In an effort to increase to child support compliance, Macomb County agencies recently announced that a week-long effort was being made to apprehend parents who have outstanding warrants issued for failing to pay child support. Those who believe or know that there is a warrant would have the chance to turn themselves in and avoid being arrested. Furthermore, they will be given a chance to have their unique situation looked at by the court to ascertain if they would be suitable for programs which may assist in lowering child support arrears.

This child support enforcement initiative is seeking the assistance of anyone who knows where a person who has an outstanding warrant for not paying child support may be. For many parents in Michigan who are facing child support disputes or are unable to meet their monthly obligation, these types of efforts could be useful opportunities.

Source: WDIV, “Macomb County to sweep for outstanding child-support offenders,” May 7, 2014