TARGET 8: Father charged nearly $200 to collect child support he's owed

3 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, November 01 2017 Nov 1, 2017 Wednesday, November 01, 2017 6:32:00 PM CDT November 01, 2017 in Target 8
By: Kyrah Davis, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

STURGEON - Imagine raising a child with no help but a few sporadic child support payments, only to be charged just to get the money you're owed. That’s what happened to Sturgeon resident Elba Roark, and he said it’s a slap in the face. 

“I could understand if it was a small fee, $25, $50. I could understand that,” he said, “but $160 is a little excessive.” 

Roark is a father of seven. In 2009, he went to court for custody of his son, after which the non-custodial parent was ordered to pay a monthly child support payment of $232 per month. According to Roark's records, the mother's payments have been anything but consistent. And sometimes, like when she went to prison, the payments were simply nonexistent. 

She was released from prison in August 2016 and moved to Arkansas almost immediately after. Roark didn’t receive another payment until March 1, 2017, and it was only $50. 

According to Missouri law, non-custodial parents are still expected to pay child support even while imprisoned. Family Support Division Deputy Director of Child Support John Ginwright said the agency will pursue payments, even during incarceration. 

“If the person obligated to pay support goes to prison, the support order still continues," he said. “We will continue to pursue avenues to collect the support if there are any assets known. If there are still bank accounts or anything that we can collect it off of, we will continue to collect the support.”

But Roark never received anything while his son's mother was imprisoned. In total, court records show she owes $20,871.32 on one order and $711.78 on another. According to Missouri law, if a parent fails to pay for 6 months within a 12-month period or goes $5000 in debt to the custodial parent, it’s considered a criminal offense. According to Roark's documentation, she has violated both measures. 

In August of this year, the state of Arkansas sent Roark a billing statement for $160 to enforce his court order. When Roark inquired about the hefty bill, he said the Missouri department told him it had sent a notification in November 2016 warning him that Arkansas might charge a fee.

Roark said he did not hear anything until after he contacted Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley. Shortly after, on September 12, he received what looked to be a copy of the previous notification with the November date marked. 

“I’ve never received anything up until, of course, they sent me this copy.” 

If he did receive something earlier, Roark said he would have said something. Ginwright said there are only two fees Missouri assesses, and they’re minimal. 

“One is a $10 fee if you don’t have your child support case open with the state agency,” he said. “The other fee is a $25 fee that is federally mandated, and that is assessed against the non-custodial parent." 

He said that only goes into effect if there’s more than $500 collected that fiscal year and the parties involved in the case have not filed for public assistance. 

“There are no fees assessed to the custodial parent if the case is opened with the state of Missouri,” Ginwright said.  

Ginwright said enforcing child support is generally the same as if they were living in Missouri. But as far as waiving fees from outside states, Missouri doesn't have that authority. 

More News

Grid
List
TIPTON - What started off as a one-day service project has turned into a month-long fundraiser. Members of the... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 12:28:00 PM CST February 21, 2018 in News
TUSCUMBIA - The Miller County Prosecutor's Office charged a man with murder on Wednesday in connection with a September 2017... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 12:09:48 PM CST February 21, 2018 in News
JOPLIN (AP) — University libraries across Missouri are spending more of their budgets on online resources and subscriptions, as... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 11:26:29 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
FORSYTH (AP) — Forest Service officials say wildfires in Taney County last week are being investigated as possible arson.... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 11:15:00 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An Illinois megadonor is contributing $500,000 to the effort to make Missouri a right-to-work... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 10:59:41 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Officers arrested a man on Tuesday following an investigation into alleged domestic assault. The 74-year-old female... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 10:53:00 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
TRENTON (AP) — Authorities say a man has been arrested in the theft of an ambulance from a northwest... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 9:37:11 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
MARCELINE (AP) — Authorities say a train has struck and killed a third-grader in northern Missouri. The... More >>
2 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 9:28:00 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Solid Waste Utility and Downtown Community Improvement District will meet Wednesday night to discuss the... More >>
3 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 7:50:00 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- It’s no secret anything related to a Disney character can dazzle a child. Lauren Kight, a senior at... More >>
3 days ago Wednesday, February 21 2018 Feb 21, 2018 Wednesday, February 21, 2018 6:00:00 AM CST February 21, 2018 in News
Jefferson City - In mid-Missouri, there are few opportunities to take to the ice like your favorite Olympic figure skater,... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 8:30:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in News
SEDALIA - Icy weather hit Sedalia and other western counties on Tuesday. The conditions are expected to continue through... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 8:03:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The 2018 Economic Outlook Conference kicked off at Columbia College with a laugh and speakers discussing how... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 7:06:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri House has given initial approval to a bill outlawing so-called "revenge porn." ... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 6:34:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in Top Stories
KOMU-8 viewers shared their favorite pictures of their pets for National Love Your Pet Day Tuesday. Show your pets... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 5:04:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - A University of Missouri team of researchers created a massive new area of research. A multi-disciplinary... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 5:00:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Attorney General Josh Hawley announced Tuesday he is taking a stance against harassment and discrimination in the... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 4:14:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - A judge sentenced Anthony Quin Hodges of Fulton on Tuesday for receiving and distributing child pornography. ... More >>
3 days ago Tuesday, February 20 2018 Feb 20, 2018 Tuesday, February 20, 2018 3:23:00 PM CST February 20, 2018 in Top Stories
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 37°
9am 40°
10am 41°
11am 43°
12pm 45°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

8:00a
Journey with Dylan Dreyer
8:30a
Naturally, Danny Seo
9:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
8:00a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition
8:30a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition
9:00a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
2018 Olympic Winter Games
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld