The problem with child support payments

Child support is an interesting thing. Everyone agrees that it is a necessary expense. I have yet to meet anyone, man or woman, who legitimately believes that any child’s life would be better without it, yet almost everyone thinks the system isn’t working for them enough. Payors feel that they shell out too much while payees feel they do not receive enough, and yet they are completely unaccountable to the state or the payor they benefit from.

It would be asinine to claim that taking care of a child financially begins and ends with food, clothing, and shelter, but shouldn’t child support go towards just that? Support for a child? There is no oversight at all on what the payee spends their support payments on and the payor is unable to seek any assistance from the courts unless it is obvious that a child’s wellbeing is grossly and evidently neglected. It’s fascinating, really. The payor is ostensibly providing for the financial upkeep of a child (hence, “child support”) while in their custody, as well as another’s, and yet the recipient doesn’t need to make any effort on their part if they are not inclined. The payor is expected to pick up a second job, an endeavor that may physically prevent them from seeing their child, and yet the recipient of the support is not required to keep even a single occupation.

In the past, keeping payees honest about their expenses would have been daunting, but now they have the convenience of receiving payments on a prepaid debit card called the EPPICard. Food stamp recipients can only spend their money on food. Even if they try to place a food order with non-food items in it, the system is able to discriminate between the items and not cover the non-food items. This technology clearly exists and is available to the government and businesses alike, so why can’t it be implemented elsewhere? Undoubtedly, there will be an outcry over privacy and government overstepping itself, but if the government is already forcing people to give up a portion of their earnings unwillingly (but for a great reason), don’t those same people deserve to make sure their funds are well spent?

  • Blake Belleman
  • I'm Blake Belleman, a young cook trying to make the best of a beautiful, yet sometimes harsh world. When I'm not trying to learn something new such as knitting, screen printing, or how to prepare a different cuisine, I like to spend my time hearing people's stories and relaxing with good company.

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