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Seek Work Order

An Administrative Seek Work Order is an enforcement remedy used to require an obligor (NCP) who is unemployed or under-employed to participate in a job-finding or job-training program. “Under-employed” is defined as: An obligor who is employed less than full time or is in an occupation that pays less than the obligor’s skills and education could reasonably expect them to earn, thus the obligor could not meet his/her support obligation.

Required Elements:

  1. An obligation to pay child support through an order of district or administrative court has been established
  2. Open child support case
  3. Obligor is unemployed or under-employed

If these elements are present, child support may file administrative action for the obligor to maintain gainful employment sufficient to meet the support obligation.

A notice to the obligor (who is not complying with court order for support). The notice must contain:

  1. Name of the child for whom support is ordered.
  2. The name of the judge and date of the arraignment
  3. Name of the child for whom support is ordered. The name of the judge and date of the arraignment
  4. Custodian of the child
  5. That the obligor is not complying with the order of support and is delinquent in a certain amount
  6. That it appears that the obligor is unemployed or under-employed so they cannot meet the support obligation
  7. Date for a show cause hearing for the obligor to show cause why (s)he should not be ordered to participate in job-finding or job-training programs

Show cause hearing

  1. If it is determined that the obligor is unemployed or under-employed or if the obligor fails to appear, an order will be entered which will require the obligor to participate in a job-finding and job-training programs and to accept available employment
  2. The order can be docketed with the district court in the county of residence of the obligor and can be enforced by contempt proceedings
  3. Order
  4. If it is determined that the obligor is unemployed or under-employed by the Department or fails to appear, the Department shall enter an order setting forth the Department’s findings and requiring the obligor to participate in job-finding or job-training program and accept available employment
  5. The order shall state: When the obligor shall report and where the obligor reports
  6. The order may be docketed in district court and mailed to the obligor’s last known address

Defenses

  1. The obligor shows good cause why an order should not be entered for job-training, job-finding or accepting employment
  2. Good cause is defined as establishing, by expert medical opinion, that the person is mentally or physically unable to work or such other grounds as the Department determines is good cause
  3. The obligor may appeal the results of the hearing to district court within 30 days of the date that the obligor is notified of the order

Legal Authority(ies):

Administrative Seek Work Orders 56 O.S. § 240.10
Judicial Review 75 O.S. § 318

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