Child Support Services

Child Support
Criminal Nonsupport Handbook

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May 25, 2007

Dear Prosecuting Attorneys:

Our collaborative efforts have made a very real difference in the lives of Texas children. District attorneys across the state, in cooperation with our field investigators and assistant attorneys general, have successfully prosecuted 263 criminal cases against parents for failure to pay child support. That is a good start; but with your assistance we can do better.

Thousands of Texas children rely on child support payments for a fair start in life. Parents who do not follow the law must be held accountable for refusing to take care of their children. Failure to follow court orders that require payment of financial and medical support must be prosecuted to ensure that Texas children receive the support they need. Without enforcement, compliance will wane.

To help district attorneys with child support prosecutions under Texas Penal Code Section 25.05, we developed the criminal nonsupport handbook. It is an easy to use guide that provides all the essential information. It also outlines how the Attorney General's Child Support Division can assist you with criminal nonsupport cases.

Because of the wide range of services my office can provide, prosecutors who have worked with us on these cases have found that they take little time and effort to prepare, present to a grand jury, and plead out.

Additional copies of this handbook are available from the child support section of my website at For more information, you may also contact Penny Denmon, field operations investigator, at 512-460-6276.

If your office has been reluctant to prosecute these cases, please consider joining forces with my Child Support Division. Together, we can ensure that children receive the support that is essential for their future.


Abbott signature

Greg Abbott
Attorney General of Texas

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