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FRO Warnings

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  • FRO Warnings

    I've been reading a lot of negative experiences with FRO lately, and it's got me a little scared.

    My fiance has a court order to pay child support based on an amount he no longer makes (due to job loss). We filed a motion to get the amount reduced (based on a new presumed amount for his new job). We are asking the court for the new amount to begin from the month after my fiance lost his job (also a month before he started his new job, but we're being "nice" by not letting a month go unpaid). In the meantime, while we await our court date (3 months from now) FRO is regularly withdrawing the amount based on the current (old job) order from his bank account. We are hoping that once FRO gets the new court order based on the new reduced amount sometime this summer, we will be compensated the amount we overpaid.

    Is this wishful thinking or is it what is most likely to happen?

    Any advice, suggestions, glance into how FRO actually works... would be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    I can tell you from experience that FRO will not do anything with out a court order. They can be very slow too. As awful as that sounds I hope it will be helpful in some way. My spouse has long standing issues with them as do I. Keep the most accurate detailed records in everything you do with them. Copies of letters and write down who you spoke with and what it was about. PM me and I would like to talk further. Share what we have been thru.


    • #3
      I don't have anything nice to say about FRO in the least. Being the recipient, I think they are pathetic and rude.
      I got a court order for support on Sept 16th with payment due on the 30th of each month starting Sept 30th. They sent the deduction order to his employer on Oct 3rd - I could see via photocopy that his pay was garnished Oct 10th, and again Oct 24th (bi-weekly pays), but here's the kicker....
      FRO allows the employers an additional 35 days to submit the payment. Meaning although he had paid nothing for Sept (this is being dealt with now) his Oct payment was due for Oct 30th, but the employer has 35 days FROM the due date to remit payment. I did not receive Oct 30th payment until Nov 25th. I have yet to see the Nov payment, and according to FRO they sent an adjusted order to his employer to start collecting the arrears.

      Why in the name of you know who would they allow employers an additional 35 days after the due date to send in the payment is beyond me. It simply means that the child support will always be in arrears, and I certainly cannot budget the amount in any way because I really don't know when it will arrive.

      I have read that those who have overpaid have to fight tooth & nail to get anything returned to them unfortunately. Whilst they come across as though they will pull out all stops & nastiness to get payment from NCP, they don't appear to be in a rush to ensure the CP is getting the child support in a timely fashion, nor do they appear to be in any sort of a rush to pay back over-payments to a NCP.

      I wouldn't hold your breath about getting the over-payment back from FRO unless you spend more money than you over-paid to get it returned. If you have the case number & PIN, you can try calling to find out some information, but they are not very helpful either. I have had one chewing food in my ear who provided me with no information. I had another who was very rude to me and when I politely asked direct questions, he deemed me disrespectful and claimed I just didn't like his answers (all he told me was that head office would update the case when they get around to it), to a third one who was very helpful, but came across as though I was cutting into his internet browsing, napping, or snacking time & sighed frequently when I asked for clarification on things.

      They really need to change their name, because they are not responsible in the least.

      Best of luck to you!


      • #4
        Thank you both for your responses. I'm sorry your experiences have been anything but good. Thankfully, it's been "so far, so good" with us. From the time we left court, it took FRO less than a month to get their act together and begin garnishments from my fiance's income source. After that, we asked for direct withdrawls, and the second payment came out from my fiance's account instead of his income source.

        However, my stepson's mom did complain to us at one point that she wasn't getting the payments from FRO. We advised her to contact FRO directly, and it seems she got things sorted out in a timely manner by enrolling in direct deposit instead of waiting for a cheque.

        My fear/question is this: Is it reasonable for us to expect reimbursement or a hold of payments until the overpayment equals itself out once FRO receives a new order? (Timeley or not, will the overpayment eventually get sorted out?)


        • #5
          I would request a record of your file from the FRO, it will show all amounts owed, and all amounts paid. Include this in your court records, or ask to present it to the courts if you haven’t for them to determine overpayment. The first request if free, after that there is a minimal fee, but worth it. Sometimes the courts let self rep people enter this kind of info as it is a legal document from a neutral party.
          Once the courts have agreed to your request to adjust, which I do not think they will have a problem with, also ask that they date the new CS amount to commence from the date you mentioned, one month after the loss of his job.
          Ask that the courts define the overpayment so that FRO has a clear path to follow to credit your account going forward.

          It is not unrealistic to ask for this, we did it and had thousands removed from the arrears at FRO when my husband lost his job.


          • #6
            Thank you FL. I'll request it shortly after the last payment before our court date. There will be a 3 week window between the day the payment is taken out of the account and the court date, so hopefully we'll get the paperwork on time and be able to file it with the courts.


            • #7
              They are slow to move on things. You have to activly keep on top of them. I had a support order standing from Dec 2006 by garnishee. In Dec 2007 it was increased significantly by court order. It took me almost 8 months of my harassing them to get the amount adjusted. And well as of today the ex is still in arrears. All a very frustrating system.
              Just a little FYI in getting employers to comply. I am a certified payroll admin. during my training it was relentlessly drilled into us on how to comply with garnisee orders and the results of non-comliance. I take my job seriously. But out of my hassles with FRO, I was told by my local MP that there has never been any employer ever that has been prosecuted for non compliance. Guess they all decided to work it out in the end. Good for me as a professional, but frustrating for a recipiant. FL's advice is sound in my opinion.


              • #8
                I do have direct deposit, it's a matter of the employer not sending the money for some time. His Pays in November were garnished - Nov 7th & 21st - ample time to submit them to FRO for the 30th, yet today is December 16th and they have not sent in the money.
                It's a very frustrating system that's for sure. Good luck to everyone that has to deal with them.


                • #9
                  One thing I was told By FRO is that it can take them typically 10 days to process a payment. From when they recieve it to when it is released to you. And the onus is on when/if they have recieved it.


                  • #10
                    Funnily enough, they told me it took them 24 to 48 hours to process the payment & deposit it to my bank account.
                    I do know when the money is garnished from the ex's wages, I simply do not know how long it takes for them to submit the payment, nor the 'truth' about when FRO processes it.
                    Crazy system.


                    • #11
                      I guess luckily (for the recipient) my hubby's payments aren't garnished straight from his employer, but are automatically withdrawn in their entirety from his bank account on the 1st of each month.

                      The only thing that I find positive about the payments being garnished directly at the income source is that if ever the payor does not make enough money one month, only 50% of his earnings are garnished, even if that is less than the amount of child support. But otherwise, I think it's a hassle. That's why we changed to automatic deductions directly from the payor. Even though it's draining our account now that hubby hasn't had a paycheck in almost 2 months!


                      • #12
                        That's very difficult for you both, but also, what great parents you both are to ensure that the child does not go without.
                        I have no other choice but to have my ex's waged garnished, he will not pay otherwise, so all I can do is sit & wait in hopes that something arrives at some point in the month.


                        • #13
                          I have had to do the same Kimberly. My spouse was the same he told me if I was lucky I would get $75 a month CS and spousal does not exist in Canada. Boy was he wrong. I will be respectful and not say how much but it did not help that he lied about his income.
                          As for the time it takes FRO I have heard both stories out of them. So I guess most days your guess could be as good as mine.


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