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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 29, 2004

Gov. Blagojevich signs laws to strengthen child support enforcement system
New laws give prosecutors more power to go after deadbeat parents and circuit court clerks power to collect overdue fees

SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich signed legislation today expanding the court’s ability to collect child support from deadbeat parents.  An initiative of the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, House Bill 4076 gives Illinois state’s attorneys the power to subpoena state tax records of non-custodial parents who refuse to pay court-ordered child support.  The Governor also signed House Bill 4106, which gives Circuit Court clerks the power to intercept state tax refunds to collect overdue court fees.
 
“My administration is committed to doing everything we can to ensure that children and struggling single parents get the child support they are entitled to,” said Gov. Blagojevich. “This law gives prosecutors one more weapon to use as we step-up our crackdown on non-custodial parents who shirk their legal obligation to provide financial support to their children.”
 
Under current law, child support deadbeats can evade and delay proceedings for long periods of time.  The new law will strengthen the hand of State’s Attorneys and speed up the handling of cases by allowing them to send a subpoena to Illinois Department of Revenue to determine whether a non-custodial parent has income available to provide child support. The data will be held by prosecutors under seal but can be used to intercept state tax refund money from non-custodial parents who owe past due support.
 
HB 4076 was sponsored by Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Des Plaines) and Sen. Don Harmon (D-Oak Park).  HB 4106 was sponsored by Rep. Richard Bradley (D-Chicago) and Sen. Iris Martinez (D-Chicago).
 

This legislation amends Illinois Department of Revenue Law to allow the Clerk of the Circuit Court Clerk to establish a pilot program with the Department for the purpose of collecting overdue court fees by intercepting state tax refunds.



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