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Change coming to employer child support enforcement forms

If Massachusetts noncustodial parents fall behind on their child support olbigations, their wages might be garnished. The Office of Child Support Enforcement is now updating its forms for employers in relation to this.

The income withholding form expires on July 31, 2017, so it must be renewed before then. Some revisions may occur to text. For example, there may be clarifications about the Consumer Credit Protection Act and the One-Time Order/Notice for Lump Sum Payments. There may also be additional text, links and fields, but the withholding form might be shortened overall.

The agency has already changed the portal for users, and overall, it has been trying to improve and organize the data it gets from employers. For example, one update allows the agency to gather information on whether or not an employer offers medical insurance and whether multiple plans are available.

Garnishing wages is generally not the first step in trying to collect child support, and parents who are unable to keep up with support payments will not necessarily have their wages garnished. Those who cannot pay support because of a change in circumstances, such as job loss, may be able to get a modification of the child support order through a motion filed with the court having jurisdiction. However, this will be prospective only and will not have any effect on amounts in arrears. A parent who is owed support might be able to go through the Office of Child Support Enforcement to collect what is owed, and an attorney can often be of assistance in this regard.

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