What is the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act?

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Child Support, Divorce, Family | 1 comment

It is not unusual for one or both halves of a divorced couple to move out of the state where they had resided in as a couple. It is a way for people to get over the dissolution of a marriage. Unfortunately, according to the website of The Woodlands Divorce lawyers at the BB Law Group PLLC, this can have repercussions on the enforcement of court-ordered child support payments when the supporting parent is no longer in the state where the divorce was granted.

This is the raison d’être for the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA); it is designed to enforce child support obligations anywhere in the US. It was first drafted in the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL) in 1991 and was enacted into law in 1996. States were then required to adopt UIFSA by New Year’s Day in 1998 under 42 U.S.C. § 666, also known as the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act. States that refused to adopt UIFSA would lose federal financing for state enforcement of child support.

The UIFSA was an important step in protecting the right of the child or children of divorce to financial support. In cases when there is a need to establish, enforce or modify a child support order across states, the UIFSA serves as the moderator to smooth things along. In general, the UIFSA establishes the jurisdiction of the state where the original order was entered, and allows only that state to make any modifications to an existing child support order.

Enforcement, always a tricky subject, is also addressed by the UIFSA by serving as a conduit for a conservator-parent to apply for orders that would carry over to another state. An example would be an order to the employer of the defaulting parent to keep back a part of the employee’s pay for the benefit of the child. If you have questions about how the UIFSA can be applied to your case, inquire with a lawyer experienced in handling out-of-state cases.

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