Our network

My Town: New legislation to save parents time and money | Families

Title (Max 100 Characters)

My Town: New legislation to save parents time and money
Families, News
My Town: New legislation to save parents time and money

WYOMING, Mich.—New legislation is now in place to save families time and money when it comes to paternity cases and child support payments.

Governor Snyder recently signed a set of 13 bills that streamlines the state system.  Legislation sponsors included Tom Hooker, who represents Wyoming; Roger Victory, who represents Coopersville, Georgetown Township and Polkton Township; Rick Outman, who represents Greenville; and Marcia Hovey-Wright, who represents Whitehall Township, Muskegon and Muskegon Heights.  The reforms include:

Establishing that a positive genetic test is a conclusive method of determining paternity, if certain conditions are met and without requiring a court determination (House Bill 5463, sponsored by Denby and HB 5464 sponsored by Hooker);

  • Specifying the conditions under which a man can be considered a biological father of a child (HB 5464, sponsored by Hooker)
  • Establishing a new act, the Summary Support and Paternity Act, allowing for new streamlined methods for establishing paternity and child support orders through the court system (HB 5465, sponsored by Kurtz)
  • Allowing local governments to assign all support-related functions to the same office and/or regionalize services related to paternity and support (HB 5466 - 5471, sponsored by Kosowski, Hooker, Victory, Kurtz, Kesto and Outman, respectively)
  • Giving parents who are struggling to make child support payments the ability to apply for alternative options for payment, monitored by the courts (HB 5472, sponsored by Rendon)
  • Authorizing the courts to consider the child’s best interest when revoking parental rights (HB 5473, sponsored by Lori)
  • Ensuring that child support is paid before assistance is granted through the Family Independence Program (HB 5512; sponsored by Kurtz)
  • Allowing parents to petition to the court to show that a biological father is not actually the child’s parent (HB 5583, sponsored by Hovey-Wright)

Snyder also signed Senate bills sponsored by state Sen. Judy Emmons and Sen. Bruce Caswell that clarify and broaden requirements for child support payments in Michigan. That legislation includes:

  • Allowing prosecution for nonsupport when it can be determined that the support payer was aware of the case (SB 520, sponsored by Emmons)
  • Saving times for courts and law enforcement by consolidating certain child support provisions into one section of law (SB 521, sponsored by Emmons)
  • Permitting the court to assess costs for the enforcement of spousal support if not reimbursable through federal programs (SB 521, sponsored by Emmons)
  • Decreasing local costs in enforcing and managing spousal support cases
  • Ensuring fees are only collected in one area of the child support program (SB 522, sponsored by Caswell)
  • Redirecting child support to new relative or caregiver when a child is placed outside of the home, regardless of technical legal responsibility (SB 526, sponsored by Caswell)
  • Moving the authority for child support allocation and determination to the Office of Child Support, instead of the State Court Administrative Office (SB 529, sponsored by Caswell)
  • Updating responsibilities for child support agencies to match the state’s current structure and practices (SB 530, sponsored by Caswell)
Families, News