International Child Support Enforcement
STEPS TO SEEKING CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT ABROAD
1. Do Reciprocal Arrangements Exist With The Foreign Country? Yes, see list below. Your state may be working on arrangements with new countries. For details, contact your state child support enforcement office (generally known as state IV-D Agency, for Title IV-D of the 1975 Social Security Act which established Human Health Service’s Child Support Enforcement (CSE) program). Your state child support enforcement office should be able to explain how to apply for enforcement of your child support order in the foreign reciprocating country. In many states, the child support office will apply on your behalf. If your state child support officials are unfamiliar with the procedures, they may wish to contact authorities in states which process these requests on a regular basis, such as California, Texas or Illinois. These states have developed handbooks and bilingual forms for processing the requests and have regular contacts with their counterparts in the foreign countries.
2. Criminal Enforcement Procedures: There have been new developments in the use of these procedures in international cases. On May 11, 1997, the state of Massachusetts, working with Interpol, succeeded in having a child support fugitive from its “most wanted” list, who was the subject of an outstanding warrant, deported from the Dominican Republic and arrested on arrival in the United States. Your state child support enforcement office may wish to contact the Massachusetts office of child support enforcement for details.
3. Initiating Foreign Enforcement Proceedings Under Local Law: If no reciprocal agreement exists, and the aggressive measures discussed in Step 2 are inapplicable, it may be necessary for you to initiate a child support enforcement action in the courts in the foreign country. This usually will require retaining the services of an attorney abroad (See Steps 5 and 6). The Department of State, Office of American Citizens Services is not a repository for foreign laws. However, selected information may be available concerning general procedures on child support enforcement in particular countries. Contact the Office of American Citizens Services to see if such information is available.
4. Retaining a Foreign Attorney: Some foreign attorneys are willing to proceed on a contingency basis, charging no fee for services until the child support is collected. A list of English speaking attorneys is available from the U.S. State Department Office of American Citizens Services. It may be helpful to provide your foreign attorney with copies of any state laws concerning reciprocal enforcement of child support orders with foreign states, including foreign countries (UIFSA, URESA, etc.)
5. Legal Aid: Some countries provide legal aid services in child support cases. The legal attache consular section of the foreign embassy in Washington, D.C., may have specific guidance. Legal aid information may also be available from a local branch of the International Social Service. The ISS headquarters are in Geneva, Switzerland, but information or assistance may be available through its New York branch at 10 W. 40th Street, New York, N.Y. 10018, 212-532-6350.
6. Authentication and Translation of Documents: It may be necessary for you to provide foreign authorities or your attorney with authenticated, translated copies of your child support order and any other pertinent documents. Consult your foreign attorney before going to this expense.
7. Service of Process: If you need to serve process on a person abroad in connection with a child support case, you may obtain copies of country specific judicial assistance flyers.
8. U.S.-Based Private Employment Abroad: If the parent from whom you are seeking child support enforcement works for a private U.S.-based employer, ask your local child support enforcement office about procedures for garnishment of wages.
9. Foreign-Based Private Employment Abroad: State child support enforcement offices in Texas advise they have found it useful to pursue all possible avenues to attempt to collect child support from the person in the foreign country, including contacting the individual’s foreign employer, including the president of the company, providing authenticated, translated copies of outstanding court orders, warrants, etc. Contact your state child support enforcement office for guidance on this process.
10. U.S. Military Service Members Abroad: If the parent from whom you are seeking child support enforcement is an employee of the U.S. military abroad or a U.S. military retiree abroad, contact the local office of child support enforcement for assistance in coordinating with the appropriate U.S. military offices cited below. Garnishment: Contact the general information operator at the Pentagon, Tel: 703-545-6700 to reach the appropriate Judge Advocate General’s Office.
11. U.S. Department of State Employees Abroad: On February 27, 1995, the President signed Executive Order 12953 that requires all Federal agencies, including the Department of State, to cooperate fully in efforts to establish paternity and in the collection of child and medical support from agency employees.
Service of Process: The Department must make its employees stationed abroad available for service of process in state court civil cases concerning paternity and child support. This means employees may not use their diplomatic or consular status to avoid acceptance of service in such actions. The Department will not accept papers or service of process on the employee’s behalf, but it will require the employee to arrange an acceptable method for acceptance of service. The Department (L/DL) will waive diplomatic immunity, if necessary. An employee who refuses to accept service in violation of this order may be subject to immediate curtailment of tour and disciplinary action, as appropriate. The Department office responsible for facilitating availability for service of process on employees is the Office of Employee Relations, Conduct, Suitability and Discipline Staff (PER/ER/CSD), SA-6, Room 431, 1701 N. Ft. Myer Drive, Rosslyn, VA 22209, (703) 516-1674 or (703) 516-1837. Garnishment: The Department will also garnish the wages of an employee to pay child support and alimony when served with court orders for garnishment. Send court orders for such garnishment to the Office of the Legal Adviser, Legislation Management, L/LM, Room 5425 N.S., Department of State, 2201 C Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20520, Tel: (202) 647-6668.
Contact(s): Office of Employee Relations, Conduct, Suitability and Discipline Staff (PER/ER/CSD), SA-6, Room 431, 1701 N. Ft. Myer Drive, Rosslyn, VA 22209, (703) 516-1674 or (703) 516-1837. Office of the Legal Adviser, Legislation Management, L/LM, Room 5425 N.S., Department of State, 2201 C Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20520, Tel: (202) 647-6668.
12. Other U.S. Government Employees Abroad: The salary of a federal government employee may be garnished for the purpose of enforcing a legal obligation to provide child support or alimony. (See 42 U.S.C. 659; 5 C.F.R. 580.101 et seq.) However, no garnishment procedures can be effectuated until evidence as to the legal obligation is furnished, such as a court order or decree. To ascertain procedures for garnishment of the salary of a federal employee other than U.S. military or U.S. Department of State described above, contact the Personnel Office or the Office of General Counsel of the employing agency. Your local child support enforcement office may be able to assist you with this process.
13. Locating the Absent Parent Abroad: Contact your local IV-D child support enforcement agency which will contact all appropriate sources for assistance in locating the absent parent, including the Federal Parent Locator Service (FPLS), Office of Child Support Enforcement, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L’Enfant Promenade, 4th Floor East, Washington, D.C. 20447, Tel: 202-401-5367; Internet Home Page: http://www.acf.dhhs.gov . That Office=s services involve searching federal databases, including U.S. tax records, that have proven useful in cases involving an absent parent abroad. The U.S. State Department, Office of American Citizens Services cannot arrange for U.S. embassies or consulates abroad to conduct actual searches for the whereabouts of U.S. citizens abroad who may owe child support. If the person’s whereabouts are completely unknown, and the FPLS is unable to locate the person through Federal databases, it may be necessary to retain private detectives through your local foreign counsel or other sources.
14. Searching Passport and Embassy/Consulate Citizen Registration Records Abroad for the Absent Parent: Information regarding the whereabouts of U.S. citizens abroad, contained in passport records or U.S. Embassy/Consulate registration records abroad, is protected by the Privacy Act. For consideration of a request for release of such information from Embassy/Consulate registration records, the state child support enforcement office must submit a written request to the Consular Section, American Citizens Services Section of the nearest U.S. Embassy/Consulate or to the U.S. State Department, Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Policy Review and Interagency Liaison (CA/OCS/PRI), Room 4817, 2201 C Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20520, Tel: 202-647-3666, citing the specific law being enforced for which release of information is being requested under the law enforcement provisions of the Privacy Act. Direct requests for information from passport records to the U.S. Department of State, Office of Passport Services, Research and Liaison Branch (CA/PPT/TD/RL), Suite 510, 1111 19th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20522-1705, citing similar provisions.
15. Passport Issuance Restrictions For Persons Owing Child Support: Sections 370, 652(k) and 654(31) of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) (Pub. L. 104-193), which amends 42 U.S.C. 452, the Secretary of State must deny a passport to a person who is in arrears of child support of more than $5,000 upon certification to that effect by the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). The certification of the Secretary of HHS is based upon the certification by a state agency in accordance with Section 454(31) of the PRWORA. The effective date of Section 370 is October 1, 1997. For further information regarding HHS certification for purposes of passport denial, please contact your local child support enforcement agency or the Department of Health and Human Services, OCSE/DPO, 370 L’Enfant Plaza, 4th Floor East,Washington, D.C. 20447, tel: 202-401-5367; Internet Home Page: http://www.acf.dhhs.gov . U.S. passports cannot be denied based on requests from private individuals. There are, however, passport regulations (22 CFR Section 51.70, et seq.) under which a person’s passport will be denied or revoked when the U.S. Secretary of State is notified by a competent authority that the person is subject to a criminal court order forbidding his or her departure from the United States. Such a request must be made by an appropriate law enforcement agency to the Department of State, Office of Citizenship Appeals and Legal Assistance (PPT/PAS), Suite 260, 1111 19th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 2062 tel: 202-955-0231.
16. New Measures In Progress: On August 22, 1996, the President signed into law The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-193), which includes provisions regarding international child support enforcement. The PRWORA designates the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Child Support Enforcement as the U.S. Central Authority to facilitate child support enforcement. Section 371, Section 659A and Section 654(32) of the Act provide that the Secretary of State, with the concurrence of the Secretary of Health and Human Services, is authorized to “declare any foreign country to be a foreign reciprocating country if the foreign country has established, or undertakes to establish, procedures for the establishment and enforcement of child support owed to persons who are residents of the United States.”
COUNTRIES WITH RECIPROCAL ARRANGEMENTS – CENTRAL AUTHORITIES
AUSTRALIA: Attorney-General’s Department, International Civil and Privacy Branch, National Circuit, Canberra, ACT 2600 Australia; tel: 011-61-6-250-6211; fax: 011-61-6-250-5939. AUSTRIA: Federal Ministry of Justice, P.O. Box 63, A-1016 Vienna, Austria. BERMUDA: The Family and Child Support Officer, Magistrates’ Court, 23 Parliament Street, Hamilton HM 12, Bermuda. CANADA: Competent Authorities in Canadian Provinces and Territories with Reciprocal Arrangements with U.S. States: Alberta: Alberta Justice, Maintenance Enforcement, P.O. Box 2404, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T5J 3Z7; tel: 1-403-422-5554; fax: 1-403-422-1215. British Columbia: Family Justice Programs Division, Reciprocal Program, #304-1175 Cook Street, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada V8V 4A1; tel: 1-604-356-1555; x1560; x1563; fax:1-604-356-8902. Manitoba: Manitoba Justice, Maintenance Enforcement Program, Woodworth Building, 2ndFloor, 405 Broadway, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3C 3L6; tel: 1-204-945-7133; fax: 1-204-945-5449. New Brunswick: Registrar’s Office, Court of Queen’s Bench, Justice Bldg., Room 201, P.O. Box 000, Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada E3B 5H1; tel: 1-506-453-2452; fax: 1-506-453-7921. New Foundland/Labrador: Director of Support Enforcement, P.O. Box 2006, Corner Brook,
New Foundland, Canada A3H 6J8; tel: 1-709-637-2608; 1-709-634-9518. Northwest Territories: Commissioner, Government of the N.W.T., P.O. Box 1320, Yellowknife, N.W.T., Canada X1A 2L9; tel: 1-403-873-7400; fax: 1-403-873-0223. Nova Scotia: Courts and Registries Division, Department of Justice, P.O. Box 7, Halifax, NovaScotia, Canada B3J 2L6; tel: 1-902-424-4030; fax: 1-902-424-4556. Prince Edward Island: Maintenance Enforcement Office, 42 Water Street, P.O. Box 2290, Charlottetown, P.E.I., Canada C1A 8C1; tel: 1-902-368-6010; fax: 1-902-368-0266. Ontario: Ministry of the Attorney General, Family Support Plan, London, 55 Yonge Street 3rd Floor, Toronto, Ontario M5E 1J4; tel: 1-416-326-2556; fax: 1-416-326-2568 Quebec: Deputy Attorney General, Ministre de Justice, Government of Quebec, Direction de la loi sur l’administration et privee, 1200 Route De L’Englise 2 Etage, Sainte Foy, Quebec, Canada G1W4M1 Saskatchewan: Saskatchewan Justice, Maintenance Enforcement Office, P.O. Box 2077, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada S4P 4E8; tel: 1-306-787-8961; fax: 1-306-787-1420. Yukon Territory: Maintenance Enforcement Program, P.O. Box 4066, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada Y1A 3S9; tel: 1-403-667-5437; fax: 1-403-667-4116. CZECH REPUBLIC: Central Office for International Legal Protection of Juveniles, Benesova 22, 602 00 Brno, Czech Republic. (Ustredi Pro Mezinarodne Pravni, Ochranu Mladeze). FIJI: Attorney General, Attorney General’s Chambers, Government Bldg., Suva, Fiji. FINLAND: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, c/o Embassy of Finland, Groot Hertoginnelaan 16, 2517 The Hague, The Netherlands; Mrs. Eila Kurki-Suonio, Legal Officer, Merikasarmi B 1, P.O.B. 176, Fin-00161, Helsinki, Finland. FRANCE: Ministere de la Justice, Service des Affaires Europeenes et Internationales, Bureau L 1, 13 Place Vendome, 75042 Paris, Cendex 01, France. GERMANY: Der Generalbundesanwalt beim Bundesgerichtshof, Zentrale Behorde, (Ministry of Justice Federal Prosecutor at the Federal Court of Justice), Neuenburger Strasse 15, 10969 Berlin, Germany.
HUNGARY: Ministry of Justice, Igazsagugy Miniszterium, Ministry of Justice, Szalay U. 16, Budapest, Hungary. IRELAND: Department of Equality and Law Reform, Mr. Michael Gleeson, 43-49 Mespil Road, Dublin 4, Ireland. (NOTE: On September 5, 1997, the U.S. Acting Secretary of State, with the concurrence of the Secretary of Health and Human Services, designated Ireland a foreign reciprocating country in family support enforcement in compliance with the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 659A.) JAMAICA: Child Services Division, 10A Chelsea Avenue, Kingston 10, Jamaica. MEXICO: Secretaria de Relaciones Exteriores, Consultoria Juridica Homero #213, Piso 17, Col. Chapultepec Morales, Mexico, D.F., C.P. 11570, Tel: 011-525-254-73-18; 011-525-327-32-10; 011-525-254-73-16; Fax: 011-525-254-73-16. NEW ZEALAND: Secretary for Justice, Private Bag 180, Postal Center, Wellington, New
Zealand. NORWAY: National Insurance Office for Social Insurance Abroad, Child Support Division, Post 8138 Dep. N-0033, Oslo, Norway. POLAND: Ministry of Justice, (Ministerstwo Sprawiedlivosci), Al. Ujazdowskie 11, 0950-Warsaw, Poland; Consul General, Republic of Poland, 1430 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60610; or Pekao Trading Corporation, 2 Park Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10016. SLOVAK REPUBLIC: Center for International Legal Protection of Children and Youth, entrum pre medzinzrodno-pravnu, ochranu deti a mladeze, Pitalska 6, P.O. Box 57, 814 99 Bratislava, Slovak Republic. SOUTH AFRICA: The Director-General, Departy of Justice, Attn: Diverse Legal Matters, Private Bag x81, Pretoria, South Africa 0001. SWEDEN: Stockholm County Social Insurance Office, Enforcement Division, (Forsakringskassan, Stockholms Lan, Utlandsavdelningen), BDF, S-105 11 Stockholm, Sweden. UNITED KINGDOM: England and Wales: Reciprocal Enforcement of Maintenance, Lord Chancellor’s Department, Selborne House 54/60 Victoria St., London SW1E 6QW, U.K. Scotland: The Scottish Courts, Administration, Hayweight House, 23 Lauriston St., Edinburgh EH3 9DQ, Scotland. Northern Ireland: The Lord Chancellor’s Department, Windsor House, Bedford St., Belfast, BT2 7EA, Ireland.http://aces-childsupport.org/international/http://aces-childsupport.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/give20woman-e1483054529526.jpghttp://aces-childsupport.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/give20woman-e1483054529526-150x150.jpgHow to Collect Child Supportabroad,child support enforcement,country,InternationalSTEPS TO SEEKING CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT ABROAD 1. Do Reciprocal Arrangements Exist With The Foreign Country? Yes, see list below. Your state may be working on arrangements with new countries. For details, contact your state child support enforcement office (generally known as state IV-D Agency, for Title IV-D of the...Gerri JensenGerri Jensengerrijensen@gmail.comAdministratorMentor - founder of ACES, Association for Children for Enforcement of SupportACES Child Support Alumni