Governor Brown Signs Bill Incentivizing Child Support Compliance to Combat Poverty
SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 380, which modifies the California Work Opportunities and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program to allow a family to choose whether or not to request CalWORKs aid for a step or half-sibling of an aided child, when the step or half-sibling receives child support payments from a non-custodial parent.
“Thank you to the Western Center on Law and Poverty for their sponsorship of SB 380, which will improve child support compliance and the relationship between non-custodial parents and their children,” said Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena).
Current state law requires that CalWORKs calculate eligibility by classifying child support received for a step-child as income. It also requires that all but $50 of such child support payments be captured by the state to recover the cost of the family’s CalWORKs grant.
“SB 380 corrects an injustice that we have been trying to address for decades and so we are thrilled to see it become law”, said Jessica Bartholow of the Western Center on Law and Poverty, the bill’s sponsor.
“Allowing a child-support payment to support a step or half-sibling will reduce poverty among low-income families and underscore the integrity of the child-support system, which requires non-custodial parents to contribute to the care of the child, not to pay for the costs of public aid paid to other members in the household.”
Senator Bradford represents the Los Angeles County communities of Carson, Compton, Gardena, Harbor City, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lennox, San Pedro, Watts, Willowbrook, and Wilmington.