The SDO contains crucial information, such as the addresses of the recipient and the payor, the name and address of the payor’s income source(s) and the payor’s social insurance number. FRO staff then uses the information contained in the SDO together with its powers, to attempt to collect support monies from the payor’s “income source(s).” FRO can demand records from any person which includes a corporation or public body.
In addition, FRO can access all records in the possession of any government of Ontario office, board, commission or agency to search for records concerning payors.
There may be additional problems where time has passed and the support orders have not been changed to reflect the new circumstances.
Our payor clients may have enjoyed income increases for several years but their support obligations have not been changed during those years to reflect what could be a higher support obligation for their children and/or spouse.
Or, there may be situations in which a support payor or support recipient have either experienced increases in their incomes, decreases or have suffered the misfortunate of employment loss.
Because support orders in Ontario are normally enforced by the provincial government agency known as the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) they may be facing several thousands of dollars worth of support arrears because FRO has continued to debit them with the amount set out in the existing order or agreement.
The Family Responsibility Office (FRO) is the provincial body that collects child support based upon a court order.
The amount collected is based on the number of children being supported and the payor's income.
Some media and politicians criticize annual reports of public watchdogs as self-promotional. We are funded by taxpayers and our annual report not only educates and informs them of how we can be of assistance and serve the public interest, it is our accounting to the public about how we dedicate our resources and the outcomes we achieve.
For example, in our latest report you could learn that: - The Family Responsibility Office (FRO), our top source of complaints for most of the past decade, made significant changes to improve its enforcement of family support orders, setting up an internal complaints office at the assistant deputy minister level.
Even when what we do is clear — we investigate and resolve complaints about more than 1,000 public sector bodies — many people are confounded about how we do it. That voice need not always be heard from the rooftops.