What are the responsibilities of the Family Court Unit of Reimbursement?
Reimbursement is responsible for making recommendations to the Family Division regarding a parent's ability to contribute toward the cost of care, attorney fees, clinical evaluations, and other costs related to the child(ren). Once a court order has been entered, this office is responsible for collection of those fees [MCLA 712A.18]. The Unit is also responsible for collecting all fees ordered to be paid by the child.
Why is a financial statement required?
The Family Division refers parents to Reimbursement to submit financial information at the point when costs are involved. After a financial statement is taken, a court order is entered based on the parent's ability to pay. If a recent financial statement is not available, a full-cost order is entered. The cost for room and board at Children's Village is in excess of $160 per day.
What type of financial information is required?
- All sources of income and/or benefits
- Pay stubs
- W-2/1099 forms
- Federal Tax Return and Schedules
- Checking/savings account information
- Verification of assets
- Monthly living expenses
- Installment payments
Information provided to determine financial liability will be treated confidentially and released only to those persons immediately concerned with reimbursement for costs.
How are child care assessments determined?
Child care assessments are based on guidelines recommended by the State Court Administrator's Office. They are based on a graduated percentage of income and the number of dependent children in the home. Assets may also be used in establishing an assessment.
If a child is declared as an exemption on a Federal Tax Return, an assessment may be levied based upon the credit that is received as a result even though the parent may be unemployed.
Both parents will be held financially responsible regardless of physical custody.
The full monthly assessment will be charged each calendar month, regardless of days of care, as long as the assessment is not more than the actual cost of care.
Are there fees if my child is on home supervision or probation?
A monthly service fee will be assessed when a child is placed in the home under supervision or on consent, standard, or intensive probation. Monthly fees will continue to be added if the case is extended.
Is there a fee for clinical evaluation?
If the Court orders a clinical evaluation, then a fee is assessed whether or not the individual complies with the order.
Where should restitution be paid?
Reimbursement collects and disburses restitution due to the crime victim. Victim issues are referred to the Family Court Victims Rights Unit.
If a parent is not satisfied with the court-ordered assessment, can they appeal?
If the parent is not in agreement with the court-ordered assessment, a re-determination of the amount may be requested by contacting this office. If an agreement cannot be reached, the parent has the right to request a financial rehearing before a judge in the Family Division. A motion must be filed or letter written requesting a hearing to the supervising judge.
Are bond monies applied to court/case-related costs?
Bond monies will be retained by the County to apply toward costs associated with the case such as childcare, court-appointed attorney fees, and service fees [MCR 5.935(c)(6)(a)].
If I'm receiving governmental benefits for the child, do I have to turn the money over to the County?
The child's portion of any governmental benefits must be turned over to the County to apply toward the cost of care; for example, Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Veterans' Administration.
Will I continue to receive my child support payments if my child is in placement?
If child support payments are being made for the court ward and the Family Division places the child in a residential facility, Reimbursement should be notified immediately. Upon notification, Friend of the Court should forward child support payments to apply toward the assessment of the parent ordered to pay support.
Can I make payment plan arrangements?
The court order will specify the day payments to Reimbursement are due. Payments must be received by that day each month in order to appear on that month's statement. Any monies ordered are considered due in full within 30 days unless a satisfactory payment plan is established.
Will I receive a monthly statement?
A computerized statement detailing new charges or payments received in the previous month will be sent on a monthly basis, as long as the account is not in arrears. The top portion of the statement should be returned with the payment. The account number must be noted on the check or money order.
What method of payment is acceptable?
Cash, checks, money orders, cashier checks, MasterCard, Visa and Discover payments are accepted. The cardholder must appear to complete the transaction. Online payments are accepted at www.oakgov.com
(go to Online Services, then pay Reimbursement Fees). Voluntary income withholding may also be arranged.
What are the penalties for non-payment of fees?
Failure to pay may result in:
- Order to Show Cause action with additional costs being assessed
- Intercept of state tax refund
What if I move (change of address)?
It is the responsibility of both parents to keep the Court informed of any change in address. Reimbursement may be informed in the following manner:
- Call 248-858-1130 or 248-858-1129
- Note the address change on the top portion of the monthly statement when the monthly payment is mailed
- Inform receipting staff when making a monthly payment in person