When the State Gets Involved
By: Rachel Smith
Sometimes, the Texas Attorney General is a party to a family law case. This can be a benefit to parents seeking to enforce child support; however it can also obscure the situation.
The AG’s Office provides services to parents, including: locating a parent, establishing paternity, establishing, enforcing, and modifying child and medical support, and collecting and distributing child support monies. The AG’s Office gets involved in one of two ways. The parent or guardian of a child can apply for their services, or they are automatically involved. Recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) of some Medicaid benefits automatically get an open case with the AG’s Office. The State is automatically involved when state money goes toward the support of a child.
This means additional resources that assist parents collecting child support; however it cannot be overemphasized that the AG’s Office does not represent either parent. They work for the best interest of the child by representing the State’s interests.
Cindy Diggs, Board Certified in Family Law and Civil Trial Law, Holmes, Diggs, Eames & Sadler 5300 Memorial Drive, Houston, Texas 77056, 713.802.1777 www.houstondivorceoffice.com