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CA: Lackey Bill Would Put Child Support Evaders on Blast

[ – 2/27/19]

A bill introduced last week by Assemblyman Tom Lackey would call for the State of California to create a website which would list parents who owe more than $5,000 in child support.

According to Assembly Bill 1498, it would showcase delinquent parents who have not been making court-ordered child support payments. The website would publicly display:

Obligor’s name
amount of child support owed.


Read more about this proposed registry


Join the discussion

  1. mike r

    Sounds like shaming to me….. Apparently that is exactly the purpose of the website.

  2. Steve

    Yes that will work. Shame them into payments for money they probably don’t have and then be blackballed for jobs so they can’t earn the money to make their payments. Do you think we’ll hear any opposition legislators say registries don’t work?

    • mike r

      Same as suspending your drivers license. Although I have to admit, that did force me to address and pay mine. I racked up 16,000 from right after I got arrested until the time I finally got another job after prison. That was like a 7 year span and that was for only one child. Paid that shit off with a quickness really. I would have paid anyways, but the suspension made me have to do it immediately out of my meager pay checks at the time. Almost killed me and my job when they suspended my license and attached my wages and my employer had to deal with it and see that I owed. I still drove on a suspended anyways. Had to, had no choice, no bus there, no other way to work, so it was either find another job where a bus went, good damn luck with that, I only got the job I had from a recommendation from a friend of mine, or just give up and live homeless forever. But hell I was struggling at the time is the only reason I was not paying yet so it is a killer for most. Just as this site will be.

      • C

        “…with a quickness .” Now there’s a phrase That haven’t heard since, well, my time in the joint. Ah, good times…

  3. Buster S.

    This is hardly a “registry”. All persons affected are in active violation of their court ordered payments. As far as I am concerned, failure to pay child support is theft. Theft against the child, its family, the tax payer in general. All these people have to do is come current / comply with their court order (again – court order), and off the list they go.

    Whether or not this approach is effective in the end, or whether it is becoming of a “civilized” society is neither here nor there.

    But it is not a registry in the sense of this site. Apples and Oranges.

    • Buster S.

      Heck, even this beauty here is not a “registry”

      It is an accurate snapshot in time. It is the same public record that can be accessed right now and forever in the past. In the courthouse of conviction, but public record regardless. The web site just takes it the next step in terms of publishing.

      It is very different from displaying CURRENT address, photo, weight, markings, scars, vehicles, etc. It is very different from being required to report once a (quarter/half) year, or for any number of future changes – all under the threat of prosecution. It is very different from being restricted from residence in many places, access to all kinds of public amenities, many professions, access to federal programs and emergency shelters, etc etc.

      Quite frankly I do not see why not all criminals in the Hoosier State and beyond are not only on a web site, but are required to register like those convicted of sex offenses – with equal ramifications. I have a right to know. Don’t I?

      “The best way to defeat a bad law is to (apply it to all equally and) strictly enforce it. ~Abe Lincoln and Buster S.

      • Will Allen

        All correct.

        Registry Nazis love to say that they have a right to know. But obviously they don’t. They don’t have a legitimate argument for that in any way. They should be told that every single day by hundreds of thousands of people.

        F these people that support Registries. Do not let them live in peace.

        • Dustin

          Funny how even those that claim to have the “right to know” don’t seem very inclined to go to the courthouses to look for it themselves. They apparently believe it should be supplied to them.

          Yet, even when it was, they weren’t paying much attention. Pretty sure that’s what led to sheriffs and others publishing registry info in newspapers and mailers and so on. Even though their registries are publicly available on line, no one was looking at it.

    • Anonymous

      I pay 3600.00 a month in child support. If I lose income for not even a month and a half, Ill be on this list. What about those who pay more than 5,000?
      State laws say, 55% of income. What happens if you dont make enough to cover a higher amount 2months? On the list?

      Theres a huge difference in circumstances from person to person. It takes some a whole lot longer to get to 5k than others , who may be a day, week, month past due.

      If you file for change in circumstances and it takes 5-7 months for the appeal, is that person added?

      Every circumstance is different, there are people who are clearly doing the right thing and people who do not care. But to lump them all together? Sounds like a so registry too me.

    • Dustin

      @ Buster S:

      Why is there a presumption that those behind on child support are living large and partying and have barrels of money to burn and are such scum they simply refuse to support their own kids? There are a handful of those, to be sure. But the overwhelming majority of fathers (and make no mistake, this bill is directed at fathers, not non-custodial mothers) are behind due to individual circumstances, not indifference.

      If the intended purpose of this bill is to get people behind on child support to catch up (and I for one don’t believe it is), it is not going to work. All it will do is hinder those who are behind due to circumstances beyond their control and have no effect whatsoever on those who aren’t paying because they don’t care or are just plain jerks. Whether you consider it a registry or not, the effect is the same – arguably (and very disputably) well intended but completely counterproductive to its supposed intended purpose.

      Procedures like these are far too susceptible to abuse. There are scores of mothers who hook up with deadbeats and deliberately get knocked up specifically to live on welfare and child support. Why should they get off scot free? They’re just as responsible for these children. Why should their foolishness be rewarded by free room and board? Having children is a blessing, not a living.

      Personally, I don’t think anyone should receive welfare or child support without at least a showing of effort to get or remain employed, with welfare/child support limited to making up the difference in actual earnings and a reasonable cost of living (which, of course, varies by location).

      Go ahead and bring the hate; I can take it. Just like my stance on the registry and the absurd laws and rules attached to it, I’m getting pretty sick of “solutions” based on stereotypes that do absolutely nothing toward their original purpose but enacted simply to do “something.”

      • ThoughtasWeak

        Exactly! How can we fight against the punishment the SOR brings, but be in support for another such registry. This has no benefit to society, and certainly doesn’t help encourage people to pay up (who are dead beats).

        This is nothing more than a shaming (punishment) scheme, and is a violation of a person’s civil liberties.

      • RegistrantNotAnOffender

        If you let a gold digger trick you into having a baby just for child support shame on you.

        I remember being incarcerated and seeing guys spend 100s in jail on drugs but couldn’t provide their spouse 50 bucks

  4. AO

    Why do politicians constantly do crap like this “for the children” when in reality it actually harms children more than helps them? Just like with the SOR, this information will be used against the very children its trying to help. Bullies constantly use crap like this to victimize people.

  5. bob

    Yep another loser politician spending tax dollars on waste !
    I’m just waiting for there to be a registry for not paying restitution to the court ! Ill be on the TOP of the list (maybe) ahah at 12k !

    In which the state will never get a red cent !!

  6. Lists, lists, and more lists

    How about we just have a directory of EVERY person in the world, their pic, their EVERY offense going back to kindergarten, and let others just search and shame the offense of their choice.
    We could search by name , or offense, or country. Wouldn’t that solve everything?
    What an asshole this guy is!

    • not sold

      You will understand if I withhold judgement on the idea of weakening all registries.
      Warped political minds have found ways to maintain a throttle hold on us. I can’t see this bill making a difference in our lives by its implementation.

  7. C

    Beat or kill a child? Do your time and rejoin society to start life anew.

    Late making those child support payments? Publicly shamed for life, plus collateral damage to your children.

    Seems fair to me.

  8. AJ

    They best be careful with this one….there may be plenty of “bycatch” of friends, relatives, and coworkers.

    • David

      (I recently heard an ad for California almonds. In it, they referred to shells and husks as “co-products”. So perhaps those family members, friends, and co-workers should be referred to as “co-catch”.)

  9. Janice Bellucci

    Assemblyman Tom Lackey is not a friend to registrants or their loved ones. His introduction of this bill could have an unintended consequence, however, that helps both registrants and their loved ones. How? The creation of a new registry for those who have failed to pay child support could deflect interest from those on the sex offender registry and could also weaken the impact of being on any registry. Never thought I would say thank you to Mr. Lackey, but here goes. Thank you, Mr. Lackey for introducing AB 1498.

    • AO @ Janice

      While I agree with you, it’s incredibly unfortunate we need to “celebrate” even more people being put in harms way (including children via collateral damage) in order to make things right down the road. Our system seems incredibly broken. My hope is that we’ll someday implement a system where something like these registries would first require extensive studies to validate their need and effectiveness.

      • Dustin

        Ordinarily, there are studies and research going into law, in practice if not statute (such as financial and environmental impact). But those procedures are always disregarded in registry and sex crime legislation, simply for political expedience. Few, if any, legislators will say, “Yeah, I want to screw SOs as much as anyone, but this proposal is a waste of time, money, and effort and will make no difference all around.”

      • AJ

        While I would wish a registry on nobody, if the path to their destruction is through their further creation, I’m for it. I believe that’s the gist of Janice’s message, too.

        Sometimes you have to go backwards to make progress.

    • R M

      Unless a child support registry punishes those for life and disregards the constitution, about the only thing it will do is shame….. and for what? Why? Deflect interest?… nope. Sex crimes vs not paying child support… I highly doubt it.

    • Harry

      This registry provide for number loop holes that is not afforded to SOR. It do not say they have go the PD within 5 business days of birthday, every year, otherwise off to the state prison you go.

  10. Mot

    If we get to put out a registry for all FELONY crimes listing the names and addresses of each convicted felon. Each DUI, murderer, assault, robbery, burglary, so that they public can be aware of someone nearby who might commit the crimes again. Then it would be fair to us on Megan’s. Also it would show how crazy it is to list us. We do not repeat with any rate even close to these felonies.

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