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Home > Child Support > Article

Child Support Policy
and Robert Williams

The father of today's child support public policy, his personal exploitation of the system, and the fallacy of his "income shares" model in use in Kansas.
by James R. Johnston

Adding insult to injury, while the "father" of today's child support public policy continues to profit from his past unique opportunity of influence, the basis of his consulting utilized in most of the country is statistically, economically, and intellectually flawed. The end result is a much costlier approach to child support enforcement to US taxpayers, but more importantly, it continues to drive an ever-widening wedge between children and the parent obligated to paying financial child support. This will be discussed in substantial detail in Part 2.

1983-1990: Williams is hired and retained as a consultant by Health and Human Services in Washington, D.C. in order to drive establishment of uniform child support guidelines for the states (federal Child Support Guidelines Project).
1984: Williams starts "Policy Studies, Inc.," in Denver, Colorado.
1984: The Child Support Enforcement amendments of 1984 (Public Law 98-378) extended the research and demonstration authority in section 1115 of
the Social Security Act to the Child Support Enforcement Program. It featured provisions that required improvements in State/local CS Enforcement Programs in 4 major areas:
1. Mandatory Enforcement Practices
2. Improved Interstate Enforcement
3. Equal Services for Welfare and Non-AFDC Families
4. Other Provisions for the States including:
- Collecting spousal support as well where both are due in a case;
- Establishment of State Commissions to study the operation of the States child support system and report findings to the States Governor;
- Formulate guidelines for determining child support obligation amounts and distribute the guidelines to judges and other individuals who possess authority to establish obligation amounts
1986: The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986 passed (Public Law 99-509). It included a child support enforcement amendment prohibiting the retroactive modification of child support awards.
1987: The Williams "Income Shares" Model is developed and promoted to various States. It was introduced in his report, "Development of Guidelines for Child Support Orders: Advisory Panel Recommendations and Final Report." for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Child Support Enforcement. According to this report, the intent was to increase "child support" awards dramatically above what existed according to established state child support laws.
1988: The Family Support Act of 1988 (Public Law 100-485) passed. It emphasized the duties of parents to work and support their children and in particular, emphasized child support enforcement as the first line of defense against welfare dependence. The key child support provisions include:
1.Guidelines for Child Support Awards - Judges and other officials are required to use state guidelines for child support unless they rebut the guidelines by a written finding that applying them would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case. States must review the guidelines for awards at least every four years.
2.Establishment of Paternity - Federal standards are established by formula. The Federal matching rate for laboratory testing to establish paternity is set at 90%.
3.Requirement for Automated Tracking and Monitoring System - Each State is required to have a fully operative statewide system in place by October 1, 1995, and states had 90% matching by the Federal government.
4.Interstate Enforcement - A Commission on Interstate Child Support was created to hold national conferences by October 1, 1990 to make improvement recommendations.

Part 2: A Review of the Williams-Inspired "Income Shares" Model, and Problems Inherent in the Underlying Economics

View Part Two...

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the on-line magazine for men with families.

The Secret Alimony Hidden in Child Support Scientific proof exists that many child support awards are too high. By Roger F. Gay.

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Domestic Armageddon Who profits from the maternal child-snatching epidemic? Two book reviews by Stephen Baskerville.

Just Let Me Be a Dad A review of Michelle D. Lovato's book of practical advice for divorcing fathers.

Men Are Beasts Whereas false accusations by women are in fact rare, occurring no more often than do other false reports of crimes, such as bank robbery -- Joint Congressional Resolution 182.

Class Dismissed Has America created a new class of citizens who are excluded from constitutional provisions regarding due process and debtors prison?

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Let No Man Put Asunder Is our traditional faith in justice being eroded by courts that operate as a child kidnapping and extortion racket?

Angels and Divorce Dean Hughson tells how a couple of angels helped save him in those critical hours following his divorce.

Gender Bias in Family Court A paralegal gives her insider's view of women who make use of the child kidnapping and extortion racketeers in our justice system.

In the Best Interest of the Child Today's fathers are more likely to seek custody. Many of them will need to prepare for a child custody evaluation.

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