Maryland child support payments will go paperless

Readers of this blog who receive or are eligible to receive child support will be interested to hear that Maryland’s Child Support Enforcement Administration has announced that child support funds will be sent electronically to those parents who are receiving payments. As a result of this upcoming change, officials will no longer issue paper checks starting in January 2013.

While those with questions about the program or other issues with child support may want to speak to a Howard County child support lawyer for more information, parents who are receiving support will now have one of two options.

First, they can provide a bank account number and support payments will be deposited directly in to that account. Those who do not have a bank account or who may wish not to participate in an electronic deposit can choose to receive a debit card, which is a new option for those receiving child support. They may use this card to convert their support payments to cash at an ATM or Banks if they so desire.

While the State acknowledges that this move will save public money – by its own estimates, a whopping $1.4 million – by changing over to electronic distribution, authorities also point out advantages to custodial parents as well. For one, they will have access to their money more quickly and in a more secure way under the new procedures than if they had to wait on a check to come in the mail. Furthermore, because some banks may charge a fee for cashing a check, the new program may leave more money in a parent’s pocket as the parent attempts to use the money in the best interest of their child.

Source: The Baltimore Sun, “Md. eliminates paper checks for child support payments,” Yvonne Wenger, Jan. 23, 2013.

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