Johnson County Kansas District Court
 
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District Court Trustee; Appointment; Enforcement of Support; Income Withholding Orders; Temporary Orders; Hearing Officers; Contempts; Appeals; Procedure. 

1. Appointment of District Court Trustee. The judges shall appoint a District Court Trustee and deputy trustees, to serve at the pleasure of the court, who are licensed to practice law in the State of Kansas and who shall be prohibited from representing parties in domestic relations actions in Johnson County, Kansas, except as required in the performance of the duties of the trustee or as otherwise authorized by the Chief Judge.

2. Powers of Trustee. The powers of the trustee shall include all those set forth in K.S.A. 23-375 et seq., as amended. The trustee shall also have the power and the duty to preside as a hearing officer at summary administrative hearings and domestic contempt hearings as needed.

3. Appointment of Hearing Officers. The Chief Judge shall appoint hearing officers to serve at the pleasure of the court, who are licensed to practice law in the State of Kansas and who shall be prohibited from representing parties in domestic support matters in Johnson County except as required in the performance of the duties of the hearing office or as otherwise authorized by the Chief Judge.

4. Payment and Enforcement of Support.

       A. Payment of Support Through Kansas Payment Center. All payments of support shall be made payable to the order of the Kansas Payment Center and mailed to P.O. Box 758599, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8599, or such other address as may be designated from time to time, unless otherwise ordered by the court All support payments shall reflect the court order number preceded by the letters “JO” (e.g., JO 99CV001234).

      B. Enforcement of Support by District Court Trustee. All orders for support shall be enforced by the District Court Trustee unless otherwise ordered by the court for good cause shown upon motion with notice to the parties of record and the District Court Trustee.

 5. Costs of Enforcement. The trustee may charge 2% of the funds collected, not to exceed $10.00 per calendar month per case, to defray the costs of enforcement, to be placed in a special depository account and to be disbursed as ordered by the court. Such fee may be adjusted by order of the Chief Judge.

 6. Support Orders.

          A. Mandatory Information. Upon the filing of each new or modified order of support, except for ex parte orders, each party shall complete and file an information form in such format as may be specified by the trustee. Each party shall provide updated information to the trustee within 7 days following a change of name, address, or employment. The trustee shall forward to the obligee and obligor the trustee's information form upon the commencing of a new action or modification of an old action. Failure of a party to provide or update this information may be considered an indirect civil contempt of court.

          All support or maintenance orders shall provide for payment on a monthly basis the amount to be paid per pay period, and the date by which the first payment shall be made. Absent language to the contrary, the payment schedule shall be on the first of each month. The court trustee shall have no responsibility to recompute the amount to be paid pursuant to any order which provides for periodic modification based upon income information to be provided by the parties or on changes in any cost of living index.

          B. Ex parte/temporary support orders. The clerk shall transmit to the trustee a copy of all ex parte and temporary orders for support and the domestic relations affidavits required by Supreme Court rule or Kansas child support guidelines. The residence, business address, and social security numbers of both parties shall be contained in the affidavit. The trustee shall not enforce any ex parte paternity orders unless there is compliance with K.S.A. 23-2224. The trustee shall enforce ex parte and temporary support orders unless the Court makes a finding upon a showing of good cause that the District Court Trustee shall not enforce ex parte or temporary orders for support.

          Enforcement of ex parte or temporary orders for support by the District Court Trustee shall not occur until child support is delinquent more than thirty (30) days and maintenance is delinquent more than sixty (60) days. The calculation of this time frame shall occur from the date of service of the party responsible for the payment of child support and/or maintenance.

          The trustee may present the following ex parte orders to the assigned judge or hearing officers: Orders in Lieu of Payment of Social Security Benefits, Orders Transferring to Court Trustee, Orders Withdrawing Court Trustee Enforcement, Orders Setting Lump-Sum Judgments, and such others as approved by the assigned judge or hearing officer.

          C. Support Orders Entered at Trial and in Post-Trial Proceedings. The clerk shall transmit to the trustee a copy of all support orders entered at trial or in post-trial proceedings, together with the domestic relations affidavits required by Supreme Court rule, and the child support worksheet required by Kansas child support guidelines. The required factual statement shall include the residence, business address, and social security numbers of both parties. Each final support order containing orders of child support or spousal support shall include the following provisions:

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that all support and maintenance payments shall be made payable to the order of the Kansas Payment Center P. O. Box 758599, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8599. Each payment must include the Court Order Number (case number) preceded by the two digit alpha character identifier for Johnson County (JO).

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the District Court Trustee shall enforce the orders of support entered herein. Each party shall inform the District Court Trustee in writing of any change of name, residence, and employer (with business address) within 7 days after such change.

          D. Mandatory Income Withholding Language in Child Support Orders. The following provision shall be contained in all orders of child support or child support and maintenance orders:

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that unless the court makes findings in conformity with K.S.A. 23-3103(j), income withholding shall take effect immediately to enforce the order of child support or child support and maintenance granted herein.

          E. Mandatory Income Withholding Language in Orders for Spousal Support Only. The following provision shall be contained in all orders wherein spousal support, and no child support, is ordered: IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that all spousal maintenance payments shall be subject to income withholding but only if (a) there is an arrearage in the payment of maintenance in an amount equal to or greater than the amount of maintenance payable for two months, (b) the obligee spouse or ex-spouse is not living with a child of the obligor for whom an order of support is also being enforced, and (c) there has been compliance with K.S.A. 23-3103(h).

7. Record of Support Payments. The trustee shall maintain a record of child support and maintenance payments.

8. Trustee’s Records. Except for printouts of payment records, copies of motions, and briefs of the parties, and orders of the hearing officers, documents, and records maintained by the trustee may be obtained only by order of the District Court upon motion with notice to all interested parties, including the trustee.

9. Imminence of Delinquency Action. Whenever an obligor is 7 days delinquent in any payment, the trustee shall notify the obligor of the delinquency and that action (including income withholding) will be taken to enforce the support order unless the support payments are immediately paid.

10. Powers of Hearing Officers.

      A. Hearing officers shall preside at summary administrative hearings to establish, modify, or enforce support orders; to determine the division and payment of health expenses; to impose interest on arrearages; to enforce existing parenting time orders for parents, to enforce visitation orders for non-parents; to hear all domestic relations contempt matters; and to conduct proceedings under K.S.A. 23-3106 to contest or stay withholding orders.

      B. The hearing officer shall have the authority in summary administrative hearings:

(1) To take testimony and prepare recommended written findings of fact and conclusions of law which shall constitute the summary record;

(2) To evaluate evidence and decide the most expeditious manner either to establish or to enforce court orders;

(3) To accept voluntary acknowledgment of support liability and stipulated agreements setting the amount of support to be paid;

(4) To accept voluntary acknowledgment of parentage;

(5) To make recommended orders, including recommended default orders; and

(6) To hear and issue orders in contempt proceedings relating to non payment of support.
      C. The hearing officer shall have the following additional authority in domestic relations contempt matters:
(1) To appoint legal counsel;

(2) To approve appointed counsel fees. (Exceptional fee applications that exceed the current maximum amount may be approved by the district court judge); and

(3) To order obligors to repay the costs of appointed counsel as a part of any domestic relations contempt order. The trustee may charge 20% of the funds collected to defray costs of enforcement for collection of these costs and fees.
11. Hearings Before Hearing Officers.

      A. Procedure: Record. All matters concerning modification and enforcement of support shall be heard by the hearing officer pursuant to Kansas Supreme Court Rule 172 except that:

         (1) the modification and enforcement of ex parte orders of support shall be heard by the assigned District Court Judge, and

         (2) modification and enforcement of support issues coupled with other post divorce or similar issues such as enforcement of parenting time, the enforcement of visitation and child custody may be set for hearing before the assigned District Court Judge.

         (3) The Hearing Officers, for good cause, may retain the child support portion of a case that would normally go to the District Court Judge.

If a verbatim record of any hearing officer's proceeding is desired it shall be the responsibility of the party requesting the record to make appropriate arrangements in advance of the hearing. The costs of the verbatim record shall be borne by the requesting party.

      B. Orders. The hearing officer shall prepare proposed orders on a judgment form approved by the Chief Judge. The hearing officer shall announce the decision, after administrative approval by the District Court, by mailing a copy to counsel for all parties, to all pro se parties, and to the trustee.

12. Review of Contempt Findings. Any party placed in custody as punishment for the contempt shall be entitled, upon request, to a hearing before a District Court Judge within 48 hours thereafter. Notice shall be given to the District Court Trustee.

13. Finality of Orders, Review Hearings, and Motions for Rehearing.

      A. Final Judgment. An order of the hearing officer which is approved by a judge of the District Court and filed with the clerk shall become a final judgment of the District Court unless a party requests either (1) a rehearing before the hearing officer or (2) a review hearing before the District Judge pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 172(h). The request shall be by written motion filed within 14 days of the filing of the judgment and served on counsel for all parties, on all pro se parties, and on the trustee.

      B. Rehearing or Review Hearing. Motions for a review hearing or rehearing shall be served upon counsel for all parties, on all pro se parties, and on the trustee. Forms for such motions shall be made available by the trustee. A motion for rehearing shall be summarily granted or denied by the hearing officer within 14 days of the filing of the motion. The moving party shall have 14 days following the filing of an order denying rehearing to request a review hearing before the assigned District Judge.

      C. Review Hearings before the District Judge. Within 30 days after filing the motion for a review hearing, the movant shall obtain from the court a date for the review hearing. If a hearing date is not timely obtained, the motion will be dismissed for lack of prosecution pursuant to K.S.A. 60-241(b)(2).

14. Time Standards. The Chief Judge of the District Court shall monitor all cases subject to the expedited judicial process in order to insure that actions to establish, modify, or enforce court obligations are completed from the time of filing to the time of disposition as follows:

      A) 90% in 90 days.

      B) 98% in 180 days.

      C) 100% in 365 days.

      If a case involves complex issues which cannot be resolved within these time standards, a temporary support order shall be entered by the hearing office under expedited processes and the unresolved issues shall be referred to the District Court.

 
Phone: (913) 715-3300 Johnson County District Court
100 N. Kansas Ave.
Olathe, Kansas  66061
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