Family Court Act, Article 4, Support Proceedings Part 2, § 429: Sequestration of respondent's property

In New York the process for getting the non-custodial parent to pay child support to the custodial parents involves going to Family Court and petitioning the court for such an order. After you as the petitioner submit a child support petition to the court, a summons will be issued that must be served to the person from whom you are seeking child support, referred to as the respondent. Ideally the process server will be able to personally serve the respondent with the summons without a problem. If personal service is not possible, the law allows other types of service including giving the summons to an appropriate person at the respondent's place of business or sending the summons to the respondent via certified mail. However, there are instances in which the respondent takes steps to intentionally avoid service. If this is the case then the court will step in. Under Family Court Act, Article 4, § 429 if service of the summons cannot be completed because the respondent has left the State of New York or is hiding in an effort to avoid service and avoid paying child support, then the court can sequester the respondent's assets that are within the State of New York. Sequestration involves the court seizing assets and holding them. The assets will then be used for the benefit of the respondent's children.

Related Statutory Provisions
  1. Service of summons: New York Family Court Act, Article 4, Support Proceedings, Part 2, § 427
  2. Issuance of warrant; certificate of warrant: New York Family Court Act, Article 4, Support Proceedings, Part 2, § 428
  3. Temporary order of protection: New York Family Court Act, Article 4, Support Proceedings, Part 2, § 430
Family Court Act, Article 4, Support Proceedings, Part 2, § 429: Sequestration of respondent's property

Where in a proceeding under this article it appears to the court that the respondent is not within the state, or cannot be found therein, or is concealing himself or herself therein, so that process cannot be personally served upon the respondent, the court may at any time and from time to time make any order or orders without notice directing the sequestration of his or her property, both real and personal and whether tangible or intangible, within the state, and may appoint a receiver thereof, or by injunction or otherwise take the same into its possession and control. The property thus sequestered and the income therefrom may be applied in whole or in part and from time to time, under the direction of the court and as justice may require, to the payment of such sum or sums as the court may deem it proper to award, by order, and during the pendency of the proceeding or at the termination thereof, for the education or maintenance of any of the children of a marriage, or for the support of a spouse, or for his or her expenses in bringing and carrying on said proceeding; and if the rents and profits of the real estate, together with the other property so sequestered, be insufficient to pay the sums of money required, the court, upon such terms and conditions as it may prescribe, may direct the mortgage or sale of sufficient of said real estate to pay such sums. The court may appoint the petitioning spouse receiver or sequestrator in such cases. The court may authorize such spouse to use and occupy, free of any liability for rent or use and occupation or otherwise, any house or other suitable property of the respondent spouse as a dwelling for himself or herself with or without the children of the marriage, and may likewise turn over to the petitioning spouse for the use of such spouse with or without the children of the marriage any chattel or chattels of the respondent spouse. The relief herein provided for is in addition to any and every other remedy to which a spouse may be entitled under the law.

New York Child Support Lawyer

If you are involved in a child support dispute it is important that the procedural rules are followed. If a petitioner is attempting to serve you with a summons regarding a child support proceeding, failure to accept service could result in your arrest or your assets being seized. If you are the petitioner and are attempting to serve the respondent, then there are steps that can be taken to ensure that a support order is issued and enforced. The staff at Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC has years of experience successfully representing clients in New York Family Court in matters related to child support enforcement, child support reduction, and other types of issues related to support. Contact us at 1.800.NY.NY.LAW (1.800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those involved in child support matters in the following locations:

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1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529)