Weekly AG Newspaper Columns
New Year’s Resolution: Pay Your Child Support
By Greg Abbott
Attorney General of Texas
WHILE YOU ARE MAKING RESOLUTIONS for the New Year, make a resolution to pay your child support in full and on time. By paying child support, you are setting a good example for your children and helping to secure their future.
Thank you to those parents who paid their child support in full and on time during 2006. Your faithfulness will provide endless benefits to your children. Parents who regularly pay their child support demonstrate that they are concerned for their children’s welfare.
It is common knowledge that child support payments help cover a child’s basic needs, such as food, shelter and clothing. However, the benefits extend beyond the financial security that each payment provides. Research shows that children of parents who pay their child support are likely to have fewer behavior problems, make better grades, and stay in school longer than children who do not receive regular support.
Parents who pay child support are also more likely to “be there” emotionally for their children and take an active role in their upbringing. Children with two involved and caring parents are more confident, more likely to exercise self-control, and less likely to engage in risky behaviors such as drug usage and early pregnancy.
For the state fiscal year that ended August 31, we collected a record $2 billion in child support, topping the previous year’s total by $226 million. This phenomenal achievement was made possible by thousands of Texas parents who faithfully pay court-ordered child support every month without reminders.
For parents who have missed pay-ments, I encourage you to renew your commitment in the New Year to provide for your children and pay your child support. Please show your children that you care about their welfare by making regular child support payments throughout 2007.
To help parents collect child support, my office accepts applications from mothers, fathers and other individuals who request our services. Applications can be obtained by visiting Child Support Interactive on the main Attorney General Web site at www.oag.state.tx.us or by calling our 24-hour voice response system at (800) 252-8014. Parents who receive financial assistance through the Health and Human Services Commission automatically receive child support services.
The Office of the Attorney General wishes you and your family all the best for a healthy and happy 2007!
POINTS TO REMEMBER
Children who receive child support are likely to:
• Have better health and nutrition
• Have fewer behavior problems
• Make better grades
The Attorney General will help you:
• Locate a non-custodial parent;
• Establish your child’s paternity;
• Establish and enforce child support orders;
• Review and adjust child support payments;
• Collect and distribute child support payments.
Apply for child support services by:
• Visiting Child Support Interactive on the main Attorney General Web site: www.oag.state.tx.us
• Calling the 24-hour voice response system at (800) 252-8014
More information is available on the Attorney General’s website at www.oag.state.tx.us.