Justice

Maintenance Enforcement Program

Information for Recipients

 

When a relationship ends, the financial obligations often continue to ensure the well-being of children and other dependants. The Maintenance Enforcement Program needs you, the recipient, to be a key partner in collecting maintenance payments on your behalf. We CANNOT GUARANTEE that you will receive your maintenance support payments. Here are some important facts you should know about the Maintenance Enforcement Program.

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RECEIVING MAINTENANCE PAYMENTS

Our goal is to work with you so your payments arrive regularly.

If the maintenance is being paid through garnishment of wages, you may not receive your payments on the same day they are due under your court order or agreement.

You must keep your own record of maintenance payments for income tax purposes. The program does not issue tax receipts.

You CANNOT receive direct payments and remain enrolled in the program. DO NOT accept direct payments from your payor.

WHAT THE PROGRAM CAN AND CANNOT DO

The program cannot change your support order or agreement in any way. Any changes you wish to try to make are considered a private legal matter between you and the payor. Your lawyer can help you with these matters.

Even when the need for maintenance payments has ended the program will continue to collect payments until a written consent or a court order stating payments are no longer required is received. If you don't let us know that payments should stop and too much is sent to you, you may be ordered by the Courts to refund the overpayment.

The Maintenance Enforcement Program cannot provide legal advice or act as a lawyer or counsellor for you or the payor.

The Maintenance Enforcement Program cannot be involved in child access or visitation problems. This is a private legal matter between you and the payor. You may wish to speak with your lawyer.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MAINTENANCE SUPPORT PAYMENTS ARE NOT MADE?

The Maintenance Support Program is not a detective agency. You are the best source of information that can help us collect money owed to you.

If you have information about the payor's address, place of employment, bank accounts, property or other property or other income sources, please write us or phone and let us know. The information could lead to collection of monies owed to you.

Maintenance Enforcement Officers are required by law to collect money owed to you wherever possible. The Officers will determine the best approach to use to collect that money.

We know that waiting for money owed to you can be frustrating and stressful. Please remember that the program is working hard to collect. Enforcement takes time. The information you provide may be invaluable. Please keep in mind that repeated phone calls to the program only reduce the amount of time an officer has available to collect funds on your behalf.

IF THE PAYOR LIVES OUTSIDE MANITOBA

Manitoba has reciprocal agreements with all Canadian provinces and territories, the United States and some other countries.

If you know the payor has moved out of the province, please write Manitoba's Maintenance Enforcement Program and provide as much information as you can about the payor's new residence, job, etc.

Manitoba's Maintenance Enforcement Program will work with the enforcement agency located in another province or country to try to collect your maintenance payments. Please keep in mind that the Manitoba Program has no control over another agency and the way it is handling your case.

If the payor moves back to Manitoba, please notify the program and provide what information you can immediately.

COLA

If your order or agreement has a COLA clause the Program will calculate the annual COLA amount if it is based on the Consumer Price Index or other public information. All adjustments will be calculated back to the adjustment date of your order or agreement.

If the COLA calculation is based on other information such as the percentage increase in the payor's annual income, then you or the payor must provide the necessary information to the program.

CONTACTING THE MAINTENANCE ENFORCEMENT PROGRAM

Our offices are located at 100-352 Donald Street, Winnipeg MB R3B 2H8. Our phone number is 204-945-7133, or 1-866-479-2717 toll-free in Manitoba. The phone lines are very busy. Whenever possible, we would recommend writing us a letter or sending a fax to 204-945-5449.