Failure to Attend

If Only One Party Appears at the Conference

If the plaintiff (the person asking for support) fails to appear for a scheduled conference, the case may be dismissed. However, if the plaintiff is on public assistance, the case will continue in his/her absence and the Department of Public Welfare will be notified that the plaintiff has failed to cooperate. This could result in the plaintiff being taken off public assistance.

Requesting Income From Employer

If the Domestic Relations Section was given the address of the defendant’s employer before the conference or hearing, the income information will be requested directly from that employer. This provides the necessary proof of earnings.

Proof of Notice

Before a support order can be entered, the law requires proof that the person against whom the support claim is made (the defendant) has been given notice of the claim and a date to come to a conference or hearing. If receipt of that notice can be proven and the defendant (the person being asked to pay support) fails to appear, and if it has been determined how much the defendant earns, a support order may be entered.

Otherwise, the proceedings will be delayed, and the defendant may be sent a notice of warrant for arrest for his or her failure to appear.

Please note: Failure to appear as directed by the court is a serious matter that could result in fines, imprisonment, or both.