In the Matter of Jagger v. Jagger, the New York Appellate Division, Fourth Judicial Department court dismissed a father’s appeal of a child support order. The court determined that the support order, which was originally entered in another state, was still enforceable in New York.
The Child Support Order Was Initially Entered in Pennsylvania, Granted on Default
In January of 2019, a mother brought a successful claim to get a child support order enforced in New York. The order, which was for her two children, was originally entered in Pennsylvania. In accordance with Article 4 of the New York family court act, she filed a petition to get the child support order enforced in Ontario County. As the father failed to respond, a default judgement was entered in her favor.
The Father Challenged Personal and Subject Matter Jurisdiction
On appeal, the father challenged the Support Magistrate’s order on the grounds that New York lacked both subject matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction over his case. Essentially, a lack of jurisdiction claim argues that court does not have the legal authority to make a ruling over a certain matter.
Subject matter jurisdiction is legal authority over the specific issue in dispute. Personal jurisdiction is legal authority over the party that is being sued. On review, the appellate courts dismissed his claim—finding that it had jurisdiction over the child support proceedings and that he picked the wrong avenue to challenge a default judgement.
Out-of-State Child Support Orders Can Be Enforced in New York
Once again, this case demonstrates that New York courts will uphold family law rulings—including child support orders, child custody orders, and child visitation orders—that arise in other states. If an order is valid in another jurisdiction, it is likely enforceable in New York.
The UIFSA Governs Multi-State Child Support Cases
As explained by Syracuse, NY child support lawyer Richard J. Bombardo, “Interstate child support cases can be especially complex. Multi-state child support disputes are governed by the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA). If you live in New York and you are owed child support by a parent in another state, you have legal options available.” New York child support services and courts can enter orders that allow parents to use all available legal tools to get access to financial support from a parent who lives in another jurisdiction.
Contact the Bombardo Law Office today.