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  10/15/2017 AG Walker updates the public on paternity matters post Hurricanes Irma and Maria  
    
 

ST. THOMAS, V.I. – Attorney General Claude Earl Walker held a teleconference with the media on Saturday to update the public on a number of issues pertaining to the operations of the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Paternity and Child Support Division (PCSD) and child support issues in general since the passage of the recent hurricanes.  Kathryn Jensen-De Lugo, Program Administrator for PCSD, was also on the call. 

AG Walker stated that the Nisky Center location, which serves the St. Thomas-St. John district, is now temporarily relocated to the DOJ, which is housed on the second floor of the GERS Complex.  However, the collection of child support payments will continue to be handled at the Nisky Center office.  PCSD will conduct all other child support-related businesses, such as applications, hearing requests and general inquiries, at its temporary location at the DOJ.  The operating hours for PCSD in both locations will be from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and the public will be notified of any further changes in these hours.

“Despite the fact that we have had some PCSD employees who are currently homeless because of the hurricanes,” AG Walker told reporters, “the entire staff has responded very well in terms of fulfilling its mission to the children of the territory who depend on child support payments and so, there was a temporary suspension of the disbursement of child support payments because of the hurricanes, but now, a large number of disbursements have been made as of this week and PCSD will be current within the next few days.”

Jensen-De Lugo told journalists that in the wake of the hurricanes, some customers – custodial parents, non-custodial parents, child or children – have left the Territory.  She used the occasion to appeal to those persons to immediately inform PCSD of their relocation.

AG Walker also listed other pertinent and important information that customers should report to PCSD.

“PCSD is aware that some customers have also experienced a loss of employment or reduction in hours due to the hurricanes and this information must be reported because a loss of income would directly affect the amount of child support to be paid; however, that determination must be made through the PCSD hearing process, so a request for a hearing must be filed by the non-custodial parent,” AG Walker said.

Some non-custodial parents making overtime, Jensen-De Lugo added, must also report this increase to PCSD.  PCSD must also be notified of any change of addresses, as some persons may be temporarily displaced due to hurricanes, or any change of financial institutions where the parent receives child support payments, Jensen-De Lugo said.  All changes should be submitted by notarized letter and mailed or hand-delivered to PCSD at 8000 Nisky Center, 2nd Floor, Suite 500, St. Thomas, V.I. 00802. 

Jensen-De Lugo advised PCSD customers awaiting child support payments to note the following:

  • Custodial parents receiving payments by check will continue to receive their checks by mail.  Checks pending prior to the passage of Hurricanes Irma and Maria have been processed and disbursed.

  • Custodial parents receiving payments by direct deposit will continue to receive direct deposit payments to their accounts.  We are currently processing all pending electronic payments and continue to work with our partners in the banking institutions to ensure all accounts are brought up to date. 

PCSD remains without communication services, such as telephone and Internet, at its Nisky Center office.  However, persons who have any queries or need clarity on any matter related to child support are advised to call (340) 774-5666, which is the main telephone line for the DOJ, and request to speak to one of the representatives for Child Support Customer Service.  

 
  AG Walker updates the public on paternity matters post Hurricanes Irma and Maria.pdf