SRS Payment Problems

By: Paul Aker
By: Paul Aker

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Child support is the only way for some single parents to make ends meet. It's money that buys clothes, food and other necessities for kids.

The Kansas Department of Rehabilitation Services is in charge of distributing the money.

SRS reports non-payments to credit agencies, but sometimes it's the SRS that's to blame for payment problems.

But for Kevin Harrison, mistakes made by the state really hit home.

Harrison's problems started not because he failed to pay his bills, but because his daughter needed more child support.

Harrison notified the Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services of his decision to voluntarily raise his child support from $129 to $329 a month. SRS then sent him to the county courthouse.

That's where he filed certified court papers putting everyone on notice that he was voluntarily upping his payments. But for some reason, at SRS nobody was taking the money, Harrison complained for months.

Harrison claims that he complained by writing letters, filing paperwork, and making calls.

His daughter couldn't wait any longer. So he decided to pay the extra $200 directly, and Harrison says the SRS gave him the go-ahead.

After months of feeling like he was just going round and round between the SRS and the courts, there were more problems.

Harrison's credit is now stained, and why? The state sent him to collections. They say he owes $1,200 worth of child support he already paid.

KAKE On Your Side went to SRS to track down some answers. The Wichita office told us to call Topeka.

Even with Harrison's permission SRS wouldn't talk to KAKE about his case.

Harrison says that he thinks that SRS should revisit their system set-up and hopes someone will eventually be held accountable.

Here are a couple of tips to protect yourself from false reporting: keep records of all your child-support payments, call your caseworker and ask them to review your payment history, and it's always a good idea to keep on eye on your credit. Check your report at least once a year.

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