On June 16, 2008 I decided to contact the Support Kids website to collect the arrears that were owed to me by my children's, sperm donor aka NCP after he had racked up over $4500 in arrears. He lives in Montana, & I was not aware that my case with the NCCSE was moved over to an interstate case, which means that both CSE offices in both states work together to locate my ex. I think he kept on moving from town to town to keep from paying child support.
So after seeing a t.v. advertisement, which turns out that they use false advertising to snag unsuspecting mothers, such as myself, to use their services.
I decided on the date above to go ahead & fill out an application & have them try to collect on the arrears. I understood the Agreement for Services form they sent me & I signed it, & waited to see if this would help him pay.
In August I decided I was not satisfied with any results that I was getting from Support Kids. They made it sound like they were working very hard on my case & this is what kind of result I was getting from them, that my case is in LOCATE, & they have exhausted ALL efforts in locating the NCP, which means they can't find him, unless I have a phone # or address where they could contact him.
So on August 29, 2008, I decided I wanted to terminate my case with them. So I wrote them a letter, sent it by snail mail & sent an e-mail to the clientline to let them know of the termination request. On August 17th, 2008 I did not know I had a letter in my mail from NCCSE that MT had issued an income withholding order, which means MTCSE found him, plus ordered him to pay extra per month to go to arrears balance. I received a notice on the Support Kids website that my case would go under review in 30 days to determine if they could terminate my case on September 3, 2008.
During this time I started to research for anything negative about Support Kids. I can't believe what I found out about all the other mothers, they have done this to.
I decided to call the company a couple of days later, which took me 20-30 minutes before anyone answered the phone, it's a long distance number, mind you. I can't afford to be on the phone for this long & run up my mothers phone bill, seeing it was her phone I have to use. Why can't this company, that is bringing in $475.00 plus 34% of child support per person, afford to have a toll free number?? And why is there NEVER any supervisors there for frustrated people to talk to??
Well, the lady I talked to & I am sorry I can't remember what her name was, told me that I had to send a written request to them requesting termination. Plus, I had not given them a chance to do anything on my case, & why couldn't I supply them with a # or address to where they could contact the NCP. They have laws they have to go by, they just couldn't go bang on his door & demand payment, is what I was told. So I requested a copy of my agreement & then she told me that, it was not her responsibility if I did not read my contract. Are they not supposed to make sure you understand what you are about to sign, if they are working so hard no your behalf??
On October 2, 2008 I got this e-mail from Support Kids:
Thank you for writing.
I'm sorry you feel the way you do. However, you signed a legal and binding contract for us to collect your child support payments. The fees are clearly outlined in the contract. Supportkids is not responsible or accountable for clients not reading the contract they signed. Fax: (866) 337-3387
Mail: Supportkids, Inc.
PO Box 18988
Austin, TX 78760
A case with Supportkids, Inc. can be terminated in three ways.
(1) Supportkids collects the Specified Amount.
(2) I notify Supportkids in writing within seven (7) days of my signing this agreement that I wish to end this agreement.
(3) Or, if 12 consecutive months pass during which no payments have been collected or received directly from the NCP and I notify Supportkids in writing that I wish to end this agreement. I understand that I cannot end this agreement if Supportkids has had a lien placed against NCP's property or has hired an attorney for me.
Please note, once your request is received it will go through a review process. You will be notified of the decision made by Supportkids about closure of your case in a few weeks.
On October 2nd , 2008 this is the message I got via Support Kids website:
10/02/2008 Locate work on your case is complete. Depending on the information that we have, your case will either move to Enforcement or remain in Locate, where we will continue to try and find helpful information.
Hello, they still can't locate him!!
October 6th, 2008 again I checked the SupportKids website again & this is the following message:
10/06/2008 After careful review of your case, the terms of the contract for services you have signed and your request to terminate service, we have concluded there is not sufficient cause to cancel your contract. You will receive a notice of this decision in the mail.
So on October 8th, 2008 I went to Swain County CSE to talk to my case worker, & she told me the state was about to close my case, because I was using SupportKids, & I could not have them both working for me. I made them aware that no matter what DO NOT CLOSE MY CASE, because I just came from the clerk of courts office where I had a Power of Attorney Revocation notice notarized & just mailed (certified mail) a copy to SupportKids & to put one in my file, that SupportKids will no longer be working on my behalf. I do have the right to revoke the POA privileges at anytime for any reason.
The same day Support Kids mailed a letter stating, While they regret my dissatisfaction, after careful review of your letter & the specifics of your case, we have concluded that for the following reasons we will not close your case: Supportkids has begun collecting the specified amount, & SupportKids has time remaining, per the contract, to begin/resume/continue collecting. Since the time you enlisted our services, we have put our resources to work in good faith to collect your unpaid child support. Highly trained specialists & investigators have worked-& continue to work- on your behalf. When you chose Support Kids to work for you, you agreed to a legally binding contract. Unfortunately, you do not meet the terms to cancel your case as outlined in your contract.
We are devoted our full efforts to collecting all the money due you as quickly as possible. It is important to us that we have your full cooperation & confidence as we move forward.
Yeah, right. They lost my confidence about 2 months ago! I have yet to hear they're response on the POA revocation. On the Supportkids website on October 14th, 2008 they have left a message on my answering machine (voicemail). Hello, my phone is off due to no money to pay it!
I thought this company would do me some good for my kids, all they have caused is frustration, grief, & headache. How could they advertise that they get the money that you deserve. I do deserve my child support, my kids need clothes pluse there are fees they have at school as well. This company does not support any kids, in opinon they are only in it to support them selves. Whatever you do if you read this report, & are thinking about using this Austin based company, don't! They are not worth it. Please don't loose faith in the state, they may be overloaded in work, but at least you get the money, eventually, hopefully.
Cherokee, North Carolina