Watkins Glen, NY--A Cattaraugus County man was sentenced to one year of probation by the Schuyler County Family Court on Tuesday (October 1) for willfully failing to pay child support.
According to County Attorney Geoffrey Rossi, the man, a resident of Gowanda, NY had previously been found in violation in September for failing to pay support to the mother of his minor child and to the Schuyler County Department of Social Services for medical assistance. The case was then referred to court for final sentencing.
Assistant County Attorney Steven Getman prosecuted the case for the petitioners. Evidence before the court demonstrated that the man owed over $11,000.00 in back payments on both cases.
The man was admonished that continued failure to support his dependents could result in incarceration of up to six months on each order for contempt of court. In addition, Family Court Judge Dennis Morris continued the existing support orders.
The mans name was not released to protect the privacy of his minor children, Rossi said.
Under New York State law, a parents failure to pay court ordered child support constitutes prima facie evidence of a willful violation. If no payments are made, the burden shifts to the parent to show credible evidence of inability to make payments. If a willful violation is established, the respondent parent may be subject to garnishment of property, loss of business or recreational licenses and probation or incarceration.
The county attorneys office represents the Department of Social Services in prosecuting child support cases brought in the family court by that agency. In addition, the office provides support collection services for eligible custodial parents seeking assistance in establishing and enforcing orders for child support.
The county attorneys office was assisted in the prosecution and presentation of the case by employees of the countys child support enforcement unit.
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