William Booth, LAD conduct child support help program

 The Salvation Army William Booth Legal Clinic and Legal Aid and Defender Association, Inc. (LAD) conducted a child support help program on Saturday, Oct. 25 at Detroit Public Library, 5201 Woodward Ave.

Participants could learn how to check their child support accounts on line, seek appropriate child support reductions and modifications, and consult with volunteer attorneys.

The program was one of a series of “Everyday Legal Issues Seminars” supported by various community agencies, including Wayne County Head Start, JVS Jewish Vocational Services, Detroit Head Start Fatherhood Initiative, Wayne County Friend of the Court, Abundant Children & Family Services Agency, Wayne County Mediation Center and Wayne County Community College District.

Among the attendees were Robert J. Colombo Jr., chief judge of Wayne County’s Third Circuit Court; Kathleen M. McCarthy, presiding judge of the court’s Family Division; and Kent Weichman, interim friend of the court.

“Paid child support is so important,” Colombo said. “Children want to know they’re being supported.”

“We do these programs as often as possible,” McCarthy said. “The Third Circuit is the largest court in Michigan and the eighth largest in the country. Our judges have heavy caseloads, and we’re woefully underfunded.”

“We’re proud of our Friend of the Court,” Colombo said. “They do more with less than any other Friend of the Court in the state.”

“We know court can be scary, so it’s better to take care of problems early,” Weichman said. “Child support is serious, because if you don’t pay, you can go to jail. Don’t hide, bad things can happen.”

“Remedies are available if you can’t pay,” Weichman said, citing changes in the law on arrearages.”

Attendees received information folders that told them how to contact the Friend of the Court and how to manage their cases and obtain legal help online. For further information, visit https://www.3rdcc.org/FOC.aspx#/list.