Behind On Child Or Spousal Support? ICBC May Now Take Your Driver’s License.
Child support and spousal support are often awarded in family law proceedings. However, it is common for these amounts not to be paid as ordered by the court after separation or divorce. In fact, it is has been reported that there is over $500 million owing in unpaid child support and spousal support in British Columbia alone https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/deadbeats-in-b-c-owe-538m-in-support-1.2784655.
In order to make child support and spousal support enforcement more effective, The Family Maintenance Enforcement Program (FMEP) introduced new changes to their program. As of March 1, 2019, ICBC now has the power to cancel driver’s licenses for BC parents who owe more than $3,000 in child support payments https://www.citynews1130.com/2019/02/28/icbc-revoke-drivers-licence-child-support/.
FMEP is a free service of the British Columbia Ministry of Attorney General and they help families and children entitled to maintenance, child support or spousal support, receive the payments issued under agreements or maintenance orders. In many cases, the payor makes the payments voluntarily, but if necessary, FMEP will take steps to collect the outstanding funds.
Where the child or spousal support is not paid, FMEP can:
- Intercept federal sources of income such as income tax or EI;
- Attach wages, bank accounts or other sources of income;
- prevent a driver’s license or motor vehicle registration from being issued or renewed;
- suspend a passport or federal licenses such as pilot’s license;
- report unpaid maintenance to a credit bureau;
- summons the payor to a default hearing in court;
- issue a lien against the payor’s personal property or land;
- In addition, they also charge interest and default fees on late or missed payments.
FMEP will not automatically stop enforcing a child or spousal support order. If your circumstances have changed due to the loss of a job of if a child is now an adult you must get a new court order to send to FMEP.
If you are dealing with FMEP or have any questions related to child support or spousal support, the British Columbia family lawyers at Crossroads Law can help. Please give us a call to set up a consultation in person or over the phone.