Office of the Attorney General News Release Archive

Tuesday, August 28, 2001


New Financial Institution Data Match system producing results

AUSTIN - Texas Attorney General John Cornyn today announced a $50,929 child support collection made possible by the new Financial Institution Data Match program. This program enables state child support enforcement agencies to locate assets of noncustodial parents failing to pay child support, held in financial institutions across the nation. In this instance, the collection comes from a Houston man, and has gone to his two children and their mother in Hidalgo County.

"Parents who fail to pay their child support should know that my office will use every legal means to see that they own up to their responsibilities," said Attorney General Cornyn. "The Financial Institution Data Match program is another useful tool to ensure that parents live up to their moral and legal responsibility to support their children."

In the $50,929 collection, the Office of the Attorney General used the FIDM program to locate the delinquent parent's checking account. The Attorney General placed a lien on the account, thus freezing the assets. After spending time in jail following an arrest earlier this month for failing to pay child support, the delinquent parent agreed to pay his child support. He liquidated the frozen assets and made a $50,929 payment against his $53,000 child support debt.

The Financial Institution Data Match program, operating at the Texas Office of the Attorney General, is designed to improve the collection of past-due child support. In December 2000, the Attorney General's Child Support Division began matching information on delinquent child support obligors with a database of depositors supplied by multi-state financial institutions. This month, the Child Support Division expanded the process by matching delinquent child support cases with data from financial institutions operating within Texas. When a match occurs, a lien may be placed on the delinquent parent's account.

In Texas, the OAG has the authority to freeze assets held in checking, savings, demand deposit, time deposit and money market mutual fund accounts. Cases submitted for the Financial Institution Data Match involve a child support delinquency of at least $150. More than $3 million in delinquent child support has been collected since December 2000, when the program began.

For more information about the Office of the Attorney General, please visit the agency's website

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