List of so-called 'deadbeat' parents to be released this weekend - WDRB 41 Louisville News

List of so-called 'deadbeat' parents to be released this weekend

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- If you are behind on child support payments, you have two choices: pay up or pay the price, which could come with a major embarrassment this  weekend.

Every year, the county attorney's office puts the names of hundreds of so called "deadbeat" parents in the local newspaper. Joe Leavell, Assistant Director of the Jefferson County Child Support Office, said there are 500 people on the list this year, all of which are wanted for flagrant nonsupport.

The theme for this year's annual delinquent child support insert is "Warrant Amnesty," so the goal is not jail time.

"Incarcerated persons can't pay support," Leavell said, adding that they want noncustodial parents working and financially supporting their children.

The list will be released this weekend, and it always generates a spike in payments.

"Probably the highest amount owed would be about $100,000," Leavell said. "Over the last 12 years, the Courier-Journal insert is directly attributable to about $15 million in support."

The insert also seems to cause widespread panic from some noncustodial parents. Some fear they could be on list.

"'I've seen my name in the insert," said Julie Smith, a longtime employee at the child support office.

Smith is responsible for training the staff at the child support office. She said the call center is always busy before and after the names are released. There's even a tip line.

"The supervisor will take all the information or voicemail messages that come in off the tip line, and she'll divide it out, or she'll work them one-by-one," Smith said. "We all pitch in to help."

Meanwhile, there's no extra pay for the extra hours, but  Leavell said there is a reward in the cards that line his office. They're from the families he serves.

"For me, it represents a family that this division has served so well that they really took time out to come back and say thank you," he said.

Despite 27-years on the job, Leavell said he has always approached each case the same.

"I've dedicated 27-years of my life to this business," he said. "I have always worked every single case as though it were my child that depended on me to do a good job."

The list will be released on Sunday. You will be able to see the names right here on wdrb.com

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