I’d heard horror stories by women of trouble that they’d had collecting child support payments for their children. A mother applies for support and/or the collection process is automatically initiated if she applied for public assistance. Days, months, years roll by and the mother/custodial parent not only receives nothing, she hears nothing from her local child support agency, without making persistent contact; and even when she does make contact, the agency is evasive, as if to imply that she is seeking charity, instead of fair assistance from her child(ren)’s father(s), who are jointly responsible for their existence.

In the meantime, the mother is occasionally juggling multiple jobs, or has trouble maintaining employment due to childcare issues, if she doesn’t have a viable support system. She is struggling to make ends meet, and is providing all or primary direct care for the children while the father is not affected in any way…

My own experience with the child support collection process has been similar. I’ve even caught the agencies amongst Memphis and Atlanta/Fulton and Dekalb Counties (where my children’s fathers reside) in unscrupulous acts surrounding collection of child support for my children.

I completed the substantial interstate paperwork for both of my children and their fathers in September of 2014. After considerable time when I hadn’t heard anything I contacted the agency, and was told to wait an additional two months. Several months went by, and I heard nothing. When I did hear from the agency a year later, they were sending me a notice for another interstate appointment…

When I arrived for the appointment, the caseworker to whom I was appointed attempted to get me to sign blanks of all of the same paperwork that I’d previously completed for my son. When I asked her why, she stated that it was because I hadn’t responded to an “Order for DNA Testing to Determine Paternity” from the Dekalb County Court, an order that I’d never received or even heard of until she produced a copy of it to me on that particular day, and my son’s father legally acknowledged paternity for our now teenage son within a few days of his birth. The fact that my son has his dad’s last name attests to this…

I informed the case worker that I didn’t feel comfortable signing blanks, and that I’d prefer to complete the paper work over again. I did just that, and then signed them, and requested copies of everything this time. I scanned and saved all of the paperwork in my online documents…

Treatment of my daughter’s case was even stranger. I’d already had a very uneasy feeling since my daughter’s aunt, Phyllis Frazier, was stabbed to death by her boyfriend, who’d later committed suicide in Alabama, per reports, shortly after I’d given her address and contact information during completion of initial child support paperwork…

When I asked about my daughter’s case, the child support worker produced a copy of a notice that was supposedly sent to my daughter’s father informing him that he was due in court on my daughter’s child support case on September 17 of last year, approximately eight days from the date of production of the letter. I telephoned my daughter’s father to ask him if he had received the notice, and he had not. I scanned and emailed him a copy of the notice for his court date and he promptly reported to the court where we presumed he’d have to report, which was not specifically listed in the letter. When he arrived, he was told that they had no such information…

…I informed the Memphis and Atlanta child support offices of the conversation that I’d had with my daughter’s father and raised additional concerns. I received a call on April 1 of this year from the child support office and was told to wait an additional thirty days. I have heard nothing further in more than two months after that conversation, an April Fool’s joke that I’m certainly questioning…

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