In a story that would be comical if it weren’t so frustrating and ridiculous. a Texas father, Clifford Hall, is facing jail time over a child support issue. But it’s not what you’re thinking – Hall is in trouble for paying too much child support for his 11-year-old son. Fox Houston reported that, unbeknownst to Hall, his child support amount and visitation schedule was modified. According to his lawyer, Tyesha Elam:
“I discovered for some reason his employer was withholding a large amount some weeks a small amount some weeks a zero amount some weeks.”
Ironically, Hall says that he feared jail time, so he quickly paid almost $3000 in back support payments. This is where the story gets confusing. According to Elam, when she and her client were in court this past November, Hall owed nothing:
“Opposing counsel testified twice that he’s all paid up,” says Elam.
Due to the confusion, Halls apparent over-payment and the snafu with visitation, Hall was sentenced to six months in jail due to contempt, which seems excessive and ridiculous to me. How can Hall pay support to his ex and their child from jail? This is a man obviously dedicated to doing the right thing. According to community activist Quanell X:
“This entire situation is shocking to me. I’ve never seen one like this. The court failed the child. The court failed Mr. Hall the system broke down.”
Make no mistake, Hall is being jailed for OVER payment and OVER visitation, even though he wasn’t made aware of the changes. According to Elam:
“…he couldn’t have gotten a worse result. He could have gone in there with a monkey and gotten a better result. What did I do that my client has over paid over visited and is now paying 3 thousand dollars in attorney fees and is going to jail for six months.”
Thankfully, Hall can still appeal, which is something he and his lawyer are working on. I hope they can work this situation out so he can be there for his child, and not be stuck in jail for half a year.