The Exploitation of Taxpayers for Money
Deadbeat Dads are
forced to pay interest on money that never existed
Jim Untershine, GZS of LB, 07-04-03
California led the nation in 2000 accumulating child support arrearages of $15.8 billion ($1.7 billion increase from 1999), and represents 19% of the national total reported to be $84.0 billion ($8.6 billion increase from 1999). \1 If all the deadbeat dads suddenly paid off this debt, the taxpayers would be forced to pay the respective states 10% of the collections or a total of $8.4 billion in incentive payments. \2
It has come to the attention of some state legislators that these child support arrearages have gotten out of hand. Many state legislators seriously doubt whether these arrearages will ever be paid off during a deadbeat's lifetime. The Federal mandate forbids states to forgive any part of this child support arrearage, which usually grows with 10% per annum interest. The longer it takes to collect it, the larger the child support arrearage grows, and the larger the Federal incentive a state earns.
The worst case scenario would involve an NCP that never pays a dime in child support, and is charged 10% per annum interest. After 18 years, the interest alone would equal 95% of the back child support owed. \3 When the current child support charges stop, the child support arrearage increases by adding 10% of the 18 year back child support owed every year.
Aside from the interest driving the child support arrearage up, the child support guideline imposed on NCPs by each state determines the maximum 18 year back child support owed. The taxpayers are forced to pay an incentive on money collected that is over and above the welfare benefits that would be paid to a family for 18 years. The spirit of the law that begged the creation of welfare reform was to keep families off the welfare roles, not to empower the state to insure a tax-free windfall for custodial parents (CP) and ripping off the US taxpayers to do it.
The tried and true benchmark for the cost of supporting children is still the maximum welfare benefits offered to families by each state. Since the CP is not required to account for the money paid to support the children, the only method by which an NCP or the state can insure the children receive support is if the family remains on welfare. Child support guidelines that exceed the state's maximum welfare benefits will serve to help the NCP fall behind in payments, while setting the pace for an exorbitant incentive from the taxpayers when the NCP is finally forced to pay years later.
Before demonstrating the "welfare only" philosophy of child support guidelines, lets take a quick look at how the "welfare plus" collections are distributed. When a full collection is made by CSE, the welfare owed is deducted and the remainder is distributed to the CP.
The state recoups their 30% share of the welfare owed collection and then deducts the state's "welfare plus" incentive before distributing the remainder to the US taxpayers. The amount distributed to the CP includes the back child support owed, minus the welfare owed, plus the interest on the back child support owed, plus the interest on the welfare benefits that the family received from the US taxpayers.
Assume that a state's child support guideline was the same as the state's welfare benefits, and the family always received welfare.
The state deducts their 30% share of the welfare owed collection and then deducts the state's "welfare only" incentive before distributing the remainder to the US taxpayers. The amount distributed to the CP includes the interest on the welfare benefits that the family received from the US taxpayers.
California will pay a maximum welfare benefit of $988/month to a family with 3 children, while demanding an NCP to pay 50% of net income ($2,200/month for NCP earning $52,800/year). If a family remained on welfare for 18 years before a full collection was made, the distribution after collection (assuming a 10% collection incentive) would be:
Comparing the distribution of collections between the two child support guideline philosophies, it can be seen that the "welfare plus" scheme allows the CP to receive a $510,494 increase courtesy of the NCP, while allowing California to receive a $51,049 incentive increase courtesy of the US taxpayers. Some greedy states will fraudulently exaggerate the welfare owed since there is no summary of welfare benefits paid to the CP. California refuses to adopt a federally approved accounting system which allows the state to fraudulently assault CPs, NCPs, and the taxpayers. California loses $150 million in federal participation for the ability to commit financial fraud.
Taxpayers may feel that our legislators should have predicted this inevitable problem of skyrocketing child support arrearages. However, our legislators at the state and federal level are being told that the child support guideline in their state is less than the welfare benefits. California legislators have been misinformed by Policy Studies Inc (PSI) of Denver, CO, \7 while the US House of Representatives have been misinformed by the Institute for Family and Social Responsibility (FASR) of Bloomington, IN. \8
The US taxpayers are richly rewarding states (that impose an outrageous child support guideline) for perpetuating welfare, encouraging divorce, provoking domestic violence, and driving the only parent capable of financially supporting the children into financial insolvency.
Usually problem identification leads to damage control, corrective action, and then an investigation into the level of involvement. The corrective action for this problem is simply to enforce the child support guidelines reported to our legislators and improve the means by which welfare benefits are used to support the children. The US taxpayers should receive the interest on the welfare benefits owed or just eliminate interest altogether, since the back child support owed in excess of the welfare owed represents money that never existed.
Jim Untershine, 824 E Pass Rd #3, Gulfport, MS 39507, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.gndzerosrv.com
Jim Untershine holds a BSEE from Mississippi State University and has 13 years experience in feedback control system design. Mr. Untershine is currently using the teachings of Werner Heisenberg and Henry David Thoreau to expose Family Law in California as the exploitation of children for money and the indentured servitude of heterosexual taxpayers who dare to raise children in this country.