Question 58: How does the judgement enforcement agency collect the payment for child support from the non-compliance parent? By deducting it from his or her salary through bank accounts or by seizing and selling his or her properties?

When a non-custodial parent has the obligation to provide child support under the Court’s judgement or decision upon divorce, but that he or she does not voluntarily perform or evades the obligations, the custodial parent has the right to request the judgement enforcement agency to enforce the Court’s decision or judgement. However, the process of enforcing a judgement on child support may be extended due to the fact that the obligor deliberately evades it and the enforcement of the judgement execution agency also faces difficulties due to the enforceable value in the request being too small compared to the seized asset[2].

Upon receiving a request for judgement enforcement, usually from the custodial parent, the enforcer who accepts the case will notify or send the judgement enforcement decision to the non-custodial parent obligated to provide child support. He or she will have 10 days, from the date of receiving the decision or valid notice of the decision, to voluntarily perform the obligation[5]. After 10 days, if that person, although being financially capable of paying child support, chooses not to comply instead, coercive measures could be taken[6]:

  • Deducting the payment from his or her account; revoking, processing that person’s money or valuable papers;
  • Deducting from his or her income;
  • Distraining and selling his or her properties, including properties kept by a third party;
  • Utilising his or her assets;
  • Forcing him or her to transfer properties, property rights, certificate of asset; and
  • Forcing him or her to do or not do a certain action.

Usually, enforcers of the judgement will first resort to simple enforcement measures such as deducting money from the obligor’s account or recovering and processing money/valuable papers from the obligor first. The person submitting the request must provide the obligor’s bank account with a positive balance to be deducted for the payment of child support. In cases where the obligor does not have enough money to fulfill his or her obligation, the enforcers will decide to deduct it from the obligor’s monthly income. If this solution is unenforceable since the obligor does not have a stable income, then there is no ground for the enforcer to deduct it from his or her income. In this case, the next solution would be a property seisure.

However, as mentioned above, the enforcers usually deliberate carefully when distraining and selling the obligor’s asset before making the decision, as sometimes the amount of money for child support is only a few hundred thousand VND/month/a child, which is too small compared to the value of the distrained asset. Therefore, in many cases, the judgement enforcement agencies decide to deduct the requested amount within a stage of enforcement from small-value assets such as television, motorbike, etc. rather than high-value assets such as houses, rights to use land, etc.

[2] Hoang Thanh Hoa, “Some difficulties in enforcement of obligation to provide child support”, Vietnamese Law Newspaper, 26/08/2019.

[5] Article 45 of the Law on Civil Judgement Enforcement as amended, supplemented by Article 1.19 of the Law 2014 on amendment and supplement to the Law on Enforcement of Civil Judgement.

[6] Article 71 of the Law on Civil Judgement Enforcement 2008.

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