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General Laws

Section 1. It is the public policy of the commonwealth that dependent children shall be maintained, as completely as possible, from the resources of their parents, thereby relieving or avoiding, at least in part, the burden borne by the citizens of the commonwealth. It is hereby declared to be against the public policy of the commonwealth for a court of competent jurisdiction to enforce an agreement between parents if enforcement of the agreement prevents an adjustment or modification of a child support obligation when such adjustment or modification is required to ensure that the allocation of parental resources continues to be fair and reasonable and in the best interests of the child. The existing remedies pertaining to the support of dependent children are to be augmented by the additional remedies provided in this chapter so as to establish a comprehensive and effective child support enforcement program through expedited processes for obtaining, modifying and enforcing child support orders, including orders for health care coverage, and establishing paternity. This chapter shall be liberally construed to effectuate the policy stated herein.

There is hereby established within the executive office for administration and finance, the child support enforcement commission. Said commission shall consist of six members who shall be the secretary of the executive office for administration and finance who shall serve as chairman, the commissioner of revenue, the attorney general, the chief justice of the trial court, the commissioner of public welfare and a district attorney who shall be designated by the governor. Said commission shall monitor the child support enforcement system of the commonwealth and shall, from time to time, advise the IV-D agency and other agencies of the commonwealth, including the appropriate divisions of the trial court department, in matters for the improvement of the child support enforcement system of the commonwealth.

The department of revenue shall be the single state agency within the commonwealth that is designated the IV-D agency pursuant to Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act and hereinafter in this chapter shall be referred to as the IV-D agency. The commissioner of revenue shall establish a division of child support enforcement which shall be provided, subject to appropriation, with such resources as may be necessary to implement the provisions of this chapter. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to limit the authority of the commissioner to delegate to the IV-D agency any child support enforcement powers or duties assigned to him under any provision of law. Said commissioner may promulgate regulations for the effective administration of the child support enforcement program.

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