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Improving child support payment compliance through an app

Being a divorced parent in New York is never easy. As single parents, moms and dads throughout the state find themselves managing child-support payments, childcare requirements, pickup schedules and visitation situations. After those parents have been cut loose from the support that directly comes from mediators, attorneys and the general court system, it can be difficult to manage on their own. That is why a new market has sprung up to provide additional support for parents who need assistance with family schedule management.

News reports show that the 35-year-old mother of a 10-year-old child has developed new software that can help both payers and recipients track child support requirements and guidelines, helping them guarantee that payments are in compliance with legal mandates. This new software, which has been on the market for a relatively short time, is designed to prevent financial missteps from both parties in a child-support agreement.

A shocking one in three parents who owe child support are not paying the correct amount. Those rates of noncompliance are much higher among parents who do not have visitation with their children. In all, government officials estimate that 14.4 million parents owe child support, with the national total approaching $37.9 billion. In other words, this is a very big problem for New Yorkers and other Americans.

Now, the new software will allow people to pay child support online, offering additional services to manage responsibilities that are involved in co-parenting. Parents are allowed to see their child support deadlines, check additional data and even schedule payments in advance, according to news reports. Even though the software has only picked up a modest following, experts in the field are optimistic that child-support awareness could be a key to improving payment compliance. In our increasingly tech-focused society, and app or software program could make all the difference for those who are seeking to comply with child-support guidelines.

Source: The New York Times, "Software for Sorting Out Child Support" Quentin Hardy, Dec. 26, 2013

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