Man Charged with Faking Own Death to Avoid Paying Child Support

Avoiding Child Support

Paying child support is a serious moral and legal obligation. In New York and elsewhere, governments use varied methods to compel parents to comply with orders mandating that they help meet the financial needs of their sons and daughters. Still, there are people who try to beat the system by collecting income under the table, failing to work and ducking child support enforcement efforts. However, one Kentucky man went even further than that. He faked his own death.

Jesse Kipf pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft and computer fraud after he took a series of illegal actions in order to create a government record indicating that he was dead. He did this to avoid paying what he owed his ex-wife in past-due child support, a total exceeding $100,000. As part of his plan, Kipf hacked into the data systems of three separate states, as well as multiple private businesses. Among other actions, he found the credentials of a doctor and used that persona to certify a death certificate that he forged. Subsequently, he used phony Social Security numbers to establish credit accounts.

Based on federal sentencing guidelines, Kipf could spend several years in prison, but even without an elaborate plan, someone who shirks their child support obligation faces serious punishment. New York has several ways in which to compel a recalcitrant parent into providing what they owe, such as:

  • Seizure of bank funds
  • Payroll deduction
  • Money judgment which increases at a high interest rate
  • Interception of tax refund or lottery winnings
  • Property liens
  • Driver’s license suspension
  • Credit bureau reporting
  • Advance cash deposits that can be accessed if a payment is not made
  • Passport denial
  • Denial of a business or professional license
  • Jail

If you’re a parent who has not been receiving full, timely child support payments as ordered by a court, you should not accept excuses or wait for the past due balance to get out of hand before taking action. An experienced family lawyer can help you take effective steps to address the problem before the amount runs to six figures as it did in Mr. Kipf’s case. On the other hand, if you are unable to fulfill your child support obligation, breaking the law should never be an option. You might be able to obtain a modification that lowers your monthly payment until you regain financial stability. 

Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C. represents clients throughout Long Island in all types of child support matters. To make an appointment regarding your particular case, please call 1.631.479.3839 or contact us online

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