Casinos helping recover child support payments
The state Department of Children and Family Services has intercepted more than $806,000 in casino winnings from 599 parents to cover back child support payments.
Secretary Suzy Sonnier said Tuesday that the casino intercept initiative has been a very successful tool in collecting overdue support. The department says collections from 18 participating casinos range from a high of $106,771 from players at the Hollywood Casino in Baton Rouge to a low of $12,218 at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs in Bossier City.
A pilot program was launched in September 2011 at Hollywood, netting $1,995 from a non-custodial father two days after its start. Other states with similar laws include Mississippi, Indiana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Colorado and West Virginia.
The program is badly needed. The same year it launched, 2011, those violating court ordered child support payments had their court information shared online by the state in an effort to gain the public’s help in finding some of those offenders. In Jeff Davis Parish alone, more than 200 people were far behind in child support payments, some owing tens of thousands of dollars.
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