By Lemor Abrams


SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Behind on child support? A proposed California law would crack down on deadbeat parents who don’t pay their child support by publicly calling them out online.

The bill is leaving some wondering how this will affect the kids this money is supposed to be helping.

Family court is the last place Jessica Wilson wants to be. But she’s looking for help from her ex.

“I just am trying to find a way to have him pay child support,” Wilson said.

She says her boys’ father owes them thousands of dollars in child support. It’s money they need for simple essentials such as jackets since the boys are outgrowing the ones they already have.

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She said it pains her so much, but her ex deserves to be called out. And that’s just what the new bill promises to do. The “child support evader law” would start with a website, putting deadbeat parents on blast with their pictures online, much like a most wanted database.

It’s a tool aimed at benefiting kids, but some divorced parents fear, could end up hurting them.

“I feel it would probably make them ashamed of their parents,” said Ibon Diaz.

California wouldn’t be the first state to go after delinquent parents. Other states are already doing it, including Texas Kansas Indiana and Arizona. Republican Assemblyman Tom Lackey is pushing the proposal. He says the purpose is not to shame moms or dads, but to shake them up.

“I think that peer pressure works,” Lackey said.

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He admits the measure could raise privacy concerns, but says the custodial parent would ultimately have the final say.

“Unless they agree that this is a reasonable remedy we don’t do it,” Lackey said.

The delinquent parent could also get off the list by making payments for 90 days. They will get a 60-day notice to correct the problem.

Many questions remain about the bill including if it will be retroactive and how it will work if a parent is owed money and their kids are adults. All those questions will be answered when the details of the bills are ironed out in the legislative process.

Comments
  1. Don Mathis says:

    Most parents behind on child support payments are dead broke, not deadbeat. If custodial mom has a hard time making ends meet, the state has various agencies to help her. But if noncustodial dad can’t afford his bills, the state – and the media – wants to shame him, to vilify him, and even to imprison him. I don’t see how hurting the father will be helping the children.