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Enforcing Support

In Manitoba, support payments in court orders (including recalculated child support orders), family arbitration awards, and some written agreements, can be enforced through the Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP). MEP is a free service offered by the Government of Manitoba to assist a support payor with meeting their spousal and child support payment obligations to the support recipient. MEP works with support payors to voluntarily meet their payments. However, if payments are not received as required, enforcement action could be taken.

The Maintenance Enforcement Program has a number of administrative options for ensuring that support is enforced in a fair and reasonable fashion:

MEP is unable to: To assist families, the MEP:

Guarantee payment of support.

Will attempt to facilitate regular payments of support through voluntary payments or enforcement actions if needed.

Change the payment obligations in a support order or agreement.

There are some circumstances where MEP has authority to change the enforcement of the support terms. For more information, visit:

Assist with collection of support when there is no support order or agreement.

Refer families to the Child Support Service to seek a child support calculation or recalculation decision

Refer families to public and community based resolution options that may result in an enforceable court order, separation agreement or family law arbitration award.

Work with any parts of a support order not directly related to support payments. For example: MEP cannot administer parenting or contact orders (child custody/access), division of property, etc.

Refer families with concerns to public and community based resolution options.

Provide legal advice or representation to families.

Refer families to public, private and community based options for legal advice or representation.

Share information about a MEP file

There are some exceptions where MEP may share file information as necessary for the enforcement of support.

Further information can be found on the Maintenance Enforcement Program website.

No one is required to have their support payments enforced through the Maintenance Enforcement Program (unless they are receiving social assistance and assigned their payments to social assistance). If a support recipient does not want to be enrolled in MEP, they should consult a lawyer to see what steps to take to enforce the order if payments are not made as required. While there are many enforcement options available to private individuals, they are more limited than those available through the Maintenance Enforcement Program.