Child Support Treaty Approved After Sharia Law Scare


North Carolina residents may be aware that the implementation of an international child support treaty was recently jeopardized by lawmakers in Idaho. The Idaho legislature cited concerns over Islamic law influencing American courts when a bill to adopt the treaty failed to pass in April. However, the vote left Idaho facing a financial crisis due to the loss of $46 million in federal funds. The Idaho governor subsequently called lawmakers to a special session, and a bill to adopt the treaty was passed on May 18 after a contentious debate.

The treaty is designed to make it easier for custodial parents to receive funds in international child support proceedings, and it has been adopted by dozens of countries since negotiations were finalized in 2007. United States law requires the terms of the treaty to be approved by all 50 states, and this is why the vote in Idaho was taken so seriously by the federal government.

Prior to approving the bill, Idaho lawmakers heard from critics who said that the threatened loss of federal funding and the denial of access to payment processing systems amounted to bribery and extortion, but government representatives said that these funds had always been contingent on mandated legislation. They also said that the initial fears about the growing influence of Sharia law lacked merit.

Many custodial parents face severe financial hardships when mandated child support payments are not received in a timely fashion. While noncustodial parents may sometimes resent being required to pay child support, they may face severe consequences if they do not make the required payments. An experienced family law attorney could assist custodial parents in this situation by initiating legal action on their behalf. This action could seek to have the wages of the delinquent parents garnished or liens placed against their property.

Source: Fox News, “Legislators pass child support bill that had been nixed over Islamic law”, Associated Press, May 18, 2015