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Proposed Oregon Senate Bill 341, Repeal ORS 107.108

July 14th, 2013 update: SB 341 died in the 2013 senate judiciary committee.

Ali Kimele

Support proposed Oregon Senate Bill 341. The proposed bill repeals ORS 107.108, which authorizes payment of support for an adult child attending school and limits obligation to pay child support to children under 18 years of age or, if child is still in high school, 19 years of age or less.

ORS 107.108, in the court’s own words, “…is not a perfect remedy for the problem”, the existing statute is based on assumptions, and it is used “to advance the state’s interests[1].”

Multnomah County Judge Kirschner opines, “ORS 107.108 violates the equal protection clauses of both Oregon and United States constitutions.”

“This is a case of one class of citizens being burdened with circumstances that are not imposed on another.” – Becky Kiely, Second Wives Cafe

A well-educated populace is vital for the State of Oregon.  However, ORS 107.108 does not treat all Oregon Capital Buildingdeserving citizens with equal protection of the law at either the Federal or State levels.  It is not the sole responsibility of child support obligors to provide a well-educated populace.  It is every parent’s moral responsibility.  As a person who is obligated to pay child support, I do so diligently and I intend to support my children throughout my life.  But, the State of Oregon assumes that I will not fulfill my moral obligation to my children and instead becomes the father to my own children in my place.

In McGinley v. McGinley (D8712-68732; CA A101792), Multnomah County Circuit Court judges incorrectly conclude “…that divorced parents have not been the subject of stereotyping or prejudice to an extent that would render them a suspect class.”  Non-custodial parents are subject to prejudice and stereotyping from State and Federal governments in that non-custodial parents paychecks are automatically garnished regardless of prompt payments.  Our own Attorney General wants to “go after deadbeat dads” and child support obligors without the ability to pay are known in the child support industry as “turnips.”  Non-custodial parents are a stigmatized minority, outnumbered politically, the target of long-standing and continuing invidious legal discrimination, and thereby subject to intermediate scrutiny.

Oregon has many issues to tackle with child support.  Current child support laws in Oregon encourages single-parenting as these laws provide more assurances of income to single parents than couples have when living together.  Supporting one’s adult child should be a moral obligation, not a legal one.

 

[1]Crocker v Crocker (Multnomah County, 8706-64201; CA A99888 judges Warren, Edmonds, and Armstrong): “…ORS 107.108 does not provide a perfect remedy for that problem…”

“…there does not have to be a perfect correlation between the state’s interest and the means it uses to advance that interest.”

“…the state assumes that, as a result of the divorce or separation, many of them will no longer be able to work together to make responsible decisions about how to support their children.”

  • HadItDad

    Besides being flawed in every way that you have already pointed out, I would like to point out that ORS 107.108 enables AND encourages adult “children” to be irresponsible, dishonest manipulators of the system.

    Recently, my husband’s 19 year old “child” dropped out of beauty school (after being enrolled for 2 1/2 months). We were not informed of her dropping out of school because Oregon does NOT require the adult “child” that is receiving child support payments to submit any kind of documentation regarding enrollment status, attendance, and/or academic progress. The only way we can be certain she is enrolled in school full time, attending, maintaining a “C” average is if my husband, the obligor, requests it. Which, essentially, means that EVERY MONTH it is OUR responsibility to contact the school she is enrolled in and inquire as to her academic progress, caseload, and enrollment status. This kind of situation is parallel to getting a paycheck from your employer without turning in your time card to verify your hours worked. Or getting food or monetary assistance each month without having paperwork to fill out and documentation to turn in. Or getting unemployment benefits without ever having to prove your unemployment status or income or lack thereof. It should NOT be the obligor’s responsibility to make sure the adult “child” is fulfilling their duties of the ORS 107.108 laws. The 19 year old adult “child” is the one that should be held accountable and responsible for submitting paperwork each month to PROVE her eligibility, NOT the other way around.

    So, since the 19 year old “child” dropped out of school in November and we weren’t aware of this until February (when we did finally receive a response to our inquiry that was sent January 3rd as to her enrollment status and academic progress), she had been cashing our “child” support check for three months that she, according to ORS 107.108, was ineligible to receive. BUT the best part is, the State of Oregon considers her eligible for that “child” support because they didn’t receive paperwork from ME contesting the “child” support until March 6th. Even though the 19 year old “child” had dropped out effective November 27th. Even though she didn’t attend school in December (support paid) or January (support paid) or February (support paid). Even though in December she texted my husband asking if we mailed her check. Even though in January she again texted my husband asking if we mailed her check. (Both times we had mailed the checks but they were in the “system”.) She KNEW she had dropped out of school, wasn’t fulfilling her obligations under ORS 107.108 yet still wanted/requested/expected a “child” support check! This is fraudulent!!! AND the frosting on the cake? The State of Oregon “doesn’t do refunds or reimbursements”. If we want to get that three months of “child” support back, we will have to SUE his daughter in civil court because she is, after all, an adult. Ironic, isn’t it? We have to sue my 19 year old adult daughter for overpayment of “child” support that she wasn’t entitled to…and this is the same adult that the State of Oregon considers a “CHILD” per ORS 107.108! This is an outrage!

    So what is the State of Oregon by way of ORS 107.108 teaching these young adult “children”?? That is OK to lie and manipulate through omission. That it is OK to take money that you didn’t earn. That it is OK to expect hand outs for doing nothing. That you don’t have to work hard to achieve a goal in life. That they aren’t accountable to anyone. That they aren’t responsible for anything.
    ORS 109.010 provides that “parents are bound to maintain their children who are poor and unable to work to maintain themselves…”. How about giving them a little incentive to work and maintain themselves?! How about encouraging them to work at least part time instead of expecting/receiving a hand out from the parent that is LEGALLY obligated to do so instead of morally obligated?!

    ORS 107.108 hasn’t given my step daughter a “leg up” on a secondary education because she has chosen to drop out and to fraudulently cash our “child” support checks. It has done nothing but cause dissension, resentment, bitterness, hostility, and destruction of our familial relationships, as I’m sure it has for other families.
    I believe ORS 107.108 is flawed in every single aspect and should be repealed!

  • Fed up

    How do you support this bill? The current law is unfair and should be repealed.

    • rebelwords

      The best way to support the bill is to write to the Senate Judiciary Committee:

      sen.floydprozanski@state.or.us (Committee Chair)
      sen.betsyclose@state.or.us
      sen.jackiedingfelder@state.or.us
      sen.jeffkruse@state.or.us
      sen.arnieroblan@state.or.us

      Copy and paste the below into your own email. I’ve yet to receive any kind of response, however. Also, I’ve not seen the bill scheduled for a hearing.
      ===

      Dear Chair Prozanski and members of the Judiciary Committee,

      I’m writing you to share my support of proposed Oregon Senate Bill
      341 (http://landru.leg.state.or.us/13reg/measures/sb0300.dir/sb0341.intro.html).

      The bill repeals a statute authorizing payment of support for
      adult child attending school and limits obligation to pay child
      support to children under 18 years of age or, if child is still in
      high school, 19 years of age or less.

      In the court’s own words (Crocker v Crocker, Multnomah
      County 8706-64201; CA A99888), ORS 107.108 “is not a perfect
      remedy for the problem”, the statute is based on many assumptions,
      and ”

      there does not have to be a perfect correlation between the
      state’s interest and the means it uses to advance that interest.”

      Oregon law can be better than statute 107.108.

      I recognize and agree that a well-educated populace is beneficial
      for the State of Oregon. However, it is not the sole
      responsibility of child support obligors to provide a
      well-educated populace. It is every parent’s responsibility. As
      a person who is obligated to pay child support, I do so diligently
      and I intend to support my children throughout my life.

      But, the State of Oregon assumes that I will not fulfill my moral
      obligation to my children and instead becomes the father to my own
      children in my place. Oregon has many issues to tackle with child support. Current
      child support laws in Oregon encourages single-parenting; the
      laws provide more assurances of income to single parents than
      couples have when living together.

      I implore you to seriously consider this bill as a step in the
      right direction of child support reform in Oregon. I am happy to
      come to the bill’s hearing and testify before your committee.

  • John

    Thanks for posting. This subject has been something i’ve become increasingly annoyed with. Having been divorced for several years and already seen the attempts at social engineering on the part of the State of Oregon via the Child support system, i’m glad something is being done to rectify, in part, the child support mechanism in the state.

    • This bill died without any hearing by the judicial committee. Zero responses from any of the elected senators on the committee after email and letter-writing. I suspect that elected officials are not interested in considering something as politically sensitive as this without a considerable presence by those who support the bill.

      • Matthew S

        Since it now has died, I may use your email template to send it to them as a ‘past failure that needs addressing still’ type request. Thanks for making me aware of your blog, we need more support against the OCS system in portland!

    • You should check out the Oregon Child Support Program’s website’s stock images of children: http://tinyurl.com/l75bo57

  • Keoni

    I wrote my legislators and nothing. That said, anyway to identify groups of individuals that can be brought together to force this bill to a vote? I for one wouldn’t mind helping to get people together, but need some help identifying what groups already exists to help get this through.

  • iagreewithchildsupport

    I agree with you, I have a long and bitter story, however I won’t go to deep into it now. After paying child support faithfully for over 18 years, this means that I am now within the guidelines of “child attending school” rules, I have learned that the law does not look at child support that way that most rational human beings do. the perspective is that the “child” is entitled to my earnings, though I have other children that I have to support, all custodial, one special needs.
    Anyone that has to meet a monthly financial budget knows that the price of everything is endlessly going up, for the exception of the wages. This means that it is excessively difficult for me to support my “children”.
    The point that I am trying to make is that if child support in the state of Oregon really cares about the “children”, the laws would reflect that. whether the children are in the system or not.

    I will be posting more comments in in the near future.

  • Michelle

    Senate Bill 341 has been re-submitted and will have another chance in the 2015 regular session. This is a great chance to join the majority of states and allow Oregon parents to decide on their own how they would like to assist their adult children. Senator Betsy Johnson is to be thanked for her work and persistence. Now is the time to write to our officials to share our support of this bill and let them know we want our constitutional rights upheld.

  • DAD-711

    Please tell me how to support this bill! I’ve always paid my child support. I paid $600 a month for 2 children. My son is 20 1/2 year old and just finished a post high school career and no longer qualifies, but I’m still paying $600 for ONE? for my daughter who just finished high school and will be attending college.
    I’m trying to have it recalculated at this time, but I don’t think it is fair for her to get $600 a month when my son only got $300 while he was in college. I also do not think its fair for just the father to be ordered to pay support, specially when the mother makes more money! please help! this need to stop!
    My children NEVER appreciate or see it as I’m helping them at all. They see it as it is OWED to them because I am being ordered to pay child support.

    • Mx

      I’ve been paying child support for 17 years – for the past 4 years it has been just under $1000 a month – my older child got married – my younger child turned 18 and I’m being required to pay $1000 a month for just ONE “child”. Completely ridiculous!!!!

  • *RUMBLEINTHEJUNGLE*

    None of laws that govern child support in the state oregon will change unless there is a massive , outpouring of support from average working people tired of getting fucked over by “oregons” beyond unfair child support “slave laws” every lawmaker in the state capitol in Salem Oregon that refuses to address this corrupt child support system, and simply turn their heads ot to be run out of office.. please remember congressman and lawmakers we elected you we can also have you removed…!