What Someone Should Do When They Are Owed Unclaimed Child Support

Often, child support recipients do not get the money that is owed to them and their children. Usually, child support payments are given to the court. In turn, the court distributes the payments to the recipients. Therefore, anyone who has not received a child support payment may have money that is stuck in the court system, waiting to be claimed. Throughout the years, the states have collected more than $100 billion worth of child support, but estimates show that $750 million has not been claimed by the people who are entitled to this money.

In a flawless system, the court collects all child support payments, including any arrears. Then, it turns that money over to the payees. However, the system does not always operate correctly, and when payments collected by the courts remain unclaimed for too long, the court sends the money to the state. In some cases, money is not given to a payee because the address on file for the payee is outdated.

Unclaimed Child Support Held by the State

When the state holds unclaimed child support, it is the responsibility of the intended recipient to locate the money. The payee should start by contacting the court that originated the child support order in person or via postal mail. Alternatively, the payee can contact the state agency that in charge of child support collection and distribution by calling or mailing them since unclaimed payments are reported to the state treasurer. Payees should keep in mind that it takes longer for the department to respond to letters as opposed to telephone calls.

Usually, the state department as well as the court can help people locate their missing child support money. Since there are numerous people in any given jurisdiction who are owed child support, it is all too easy for the state department to become backlogged with paperwork. An online search for unclaimed child support is a faster way to find this money, and the search is free.

Searching for Missing Child Support

Payees can search on the internet for lost child support payments by simply entering their first and last name into a database. Some people who have previously collected child support from a different state than the one in which they now live may find they have thousands of dollars to claim. Those who have resided in multiple states will discover that it is less stressful to search online instead of making an inquiry with each courthouse or state department.

On the other hand, people that the court orders to pay child support usually want to know that their child actually receives the money they sent. Due to the courts being overwhelmed by child support enforcement cases, it may be hard to find missing payments. Therefore, an online database is also a helpful tool for non-custodial parents. By making an effort to trace these funds, non-custodial parents can shorten the time it takes for their child to receive the money he needs.

Thanks to the internet, locating money is now easier than ever, and online databases alleviate a huge burden off of the overtaxed court system. By conducting an online search for unclaimed property, payees may finally get the money they desperately need to pay for their child's school clothing, extracurricular activities and medical bills. In one instance, a woman who lives in Ohio located over $31,000 in unclaimed child support.

There are multiple websites dedicated to helping people find their missing money. Any website that requires a person to pay for access to its search database is usually a scam. Searching for records online should not cost any amount of money. Even if a website that requires payment is not a scam, it does not make sense to pay for information that someone can locate for free.

Uncollected child support money is one of the largest portions of funds that remain unclaimed each year. Since there has been a 29 percent increase in child support money, state departments have recommended some regulations that determine how the government should use the unclaimed money. A few states have proposed to put this money toward expenses like road improvements and prison repairs. Therefore, it is crucial for payees to claim their missing money before the state keeps and spends it.

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