Late last month, California lawmakers in the state senate approved Senate Bill 585—which would allow Child Support Services to intercept insurance payouts meant for parents who are behind on their child support payments. As
Insurance Journal reports, SB585 was passed with a strong 29-4 vote and is now on its way to the Assembly for further consideration.
Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones introduced the bill in hopes that a government-mandated cooperation between Child Support Services and California insurance providers would mean that more support payments would be made to the children and families who need them. Senator Connie Leyva of Chino agreed following the vote, telling the press that she hoped that the new bill would greatly increase payments.
According to the new bill, insurance companies would work together with Child Support Services to identify customers who have outstanding child support payments. Then, if those customers receive claims, settlements, or awards, those funds would be intercepted by Child Support Services to satisfy child support debts.
Government Enforced Cooperation
Insurance payout intercepts are not a new idea. In fact, Insurance Journal estimates that about a quarter of insurance providers already voluntarily take part in the program. Every year, the voluntary program collects roughly $17 million to help satisfy delinquent child support payments.
SB585 would make this program mandatory for all California insurance providers and is likely to provide a boom in child support payments, if passed. Despite some concerns in the insurance industry, the bill's strong support in the senate may be telling of lawmakers' willingness to push the bill into law.
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