The state went after a Ceres father for child support he paid. When he found out his former employer never handed over the child support they garnished from his pay-check, he called Kurtis.
When we first met Noah Hernandez in May, he was revved up about being told he owed child support. He has paystubs to prove he already paid it.
“I thought, there’s no way it’s garnished, it’s deducted out of every paycheck I have,” said Hernandez.
His former employer Valley Protective Services of Fresno didn’t send along $1,361.88 to the state. The state was after Hernandez, and his daughter wasn’t getting the support, straining the relationship with her mother.
“In her eyes, I’m just a deadbeat that’s not paying,” said Hernandez.
Employers who don’t pass along child support could face fines, even jail time.
Merced County Department of Child Support Services failed to get the company to pay for a year before filing contempt charges against them.
“Enforcing wage-assignment orders is not at the top of their list,” said non-profit attorney, Stephen Goldberg, of Legal Services of Northern California.
Goldberg says the system still holds people like Hernandez responsible, when the state doesn’t get the child support.
“I don’t think this is a very common situation, but I do think this isn’t right,” said Goldberg.
Richard Rodriguez, the owner of Valley Protective Services, told us:
“The checks were sent to Merced county… However due to one of the checks being returned they sent them back.”
“Since our conversation I have already contacted the Merced office and awaiting pay off information and this matter will be at rest Wednesday…”
Wednesday came and went, but Hernandez says a few weeks later Rodriguez eventually paid the $1,361.88 plus interest.
“He can pay the debt, he can’t pay the rest of my year back,” said Hernandez.
Rodriguez told us in May a couple other employees were in the same position as Hernandez.
We reached out to Rodriguez to see if their payments had finally been made as well. He said yes, he “took care of all obligations.”