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Child Support Accountability Bill

Senate Bill No. 543 (By Senator Boley)

[Introduced February 16, 1999; referred to the Committee on the Judiciary]

A BILL to amend article one-b, chapter forty-eight-a of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated section seventeen, relating to accountability for child support payments; income share formula applied for both custodial and noncustodial parents; establishment of checking account in child's name; oversight; and authority for proposed rules for legislative promulgation.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia; That article one-b, chapter forty-eight-a of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated section seventeen, to read as follows:

ARTICLE 1B. GUIDELINES FOR CHILD SUPPORT AWARDS. 48A-1B-17. Accountability of custodial and noncustodial parents for child support; checking account established for child; right to an audit; oversight;; authority to propose rules for legislative promulgation. (a) Notwithstanding any other law in this code to the contrary, on and after the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-nine, all child support awarded pursuant to the income share formula and upheld by court order, from both the custodial and the noncustodial parent, is subject to the accountability provisions as set forth in this section. (b) Monthly child support amounts shall be ascertained for both the custodial and noncustodial parent, pursuant to the current calculations for child support obligations as set forth in this article. (c) These monthly child support payments shall be deposited in a checking account, which has been set up in the child's name at a bank, as directed by the court. Both the custodial and the noncustodial parent shall receive monthly statements on the account from the bank. Withdrawals may be made from the checking account bky check only, upon which the purpose for the withdrawal is clearly set forth. Case withdrawals may not be made from the checking account. (d) Upon written notice to the court, the noncustodial parent, at his or her own expense, have audits performed on the checking account. The audits may not be performed more than four times per year. If, in the opinion of the court, such an audit shows that the moneys in the account are not being used as directed by the court for support of the child, then the court may direct that control of the child's checking account be transferred to the noncustodial parent, or a third party, as determined by the court to be in the best interest of the child. (e) The court may not involve the West Virginia support enforcement division in collection of the child support payments owed to the child unless either parent fails to meet his or her obligations as directed by the court. (f) The West Virginia child support enforcement division is hereby authorized to propose rules for legislative promulgation, pursuant to chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, to implement the provisions of this section.