Tennessee Child Support Enforcement Abuses Innocent Dad

Murfreesboro, TN–Background: When discussing child support enforcement, I often refer to them as “The IRS on steroids.” Child support enforcement agencies are notorious for their bureaucratic bungling and incessant computer errors, and there is practically no idiocy which they don’t and won’t commit.

For some examples, see my coverage of the outrageous Herbert L. Chalmers case, as well as Child Support Enforcement Accuses Teenage Boy of Fathering Child When He Was Three from Australia, and some of the cases I document in my co-authored column Memphis Commercial Appeal, Chest-Thumping Sheriff Humiliate Hard Luck Noncustodial Parents (Tennessee Tribune, 4/27/06).

Knock me over with a feather–here’s another abusive Tennessee child support screw-up. The Tennessee Department of Human Services tries to shake down an innocent father for $50,000 for some other guy’s kids, and even years later the problem has not been straightened out.

DHS’s defense? “The children’s welfare is the No. 1 concern.” Of course.

Man Involved In ID Mix-Up Over Child Support
1/15/08, Nashville, TN

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Imagine being told you owe $50,000 in child support for children that aren’t yours.

That’s what’s happening to a Murfreesboro man.

The Tennessee Department of Human Services has thousands of names of parents that owe child support. One of those names is Dennis Joe Brannon.

No one knows where he lives, but the state does know where Dennis K. Brannon lives.

They apparently want him pay for the other guy’s children.

“I’ve been married happily over 21 years and it’s just not possible that I’ve got kids in another county,” said Dennis K. Brannon of Murfreesboro.

Brannon has letters from the state demanding he pay child support.

“It’s in the sum of $50,000,” he said as he looked at the latest letter.

The letter came from the Attorney General’s office in Huntsville, Tenn., which is northeast of Knoxville.

The state is looking for Dennis Joe Brannon, but Dennis K. Brannon is receiving the threatening letters.

Initially, Brannon and his wife thought the mix-up was funny.

“We kind of made a running joke about this, but then it gets aggravating after awhile,” he said. “After two or three years, it’s time to get it straightened out.”

He claims he’s called several times.

“Well I’m sure if he’s been in contact with our office, we would do whatever we needed to do to rectify the situation and make sure we have the right person,” said Lori Jones, Assistant District Attorney of Child Support Division.

That isn’t the case, Brannon said.

“They told me I’d have to come up there and do a DNA test and prove I’m not the father of these children,” he said…

Read the full article here.

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