June 7, 2019

New child support payment card coming July 1

BATAVIA, Ohio (June 7, 2019) –  Ohio’s Child Support Program  will replace the e-QuickPay Debit Master Card with the smiONE payment card starting July 1. For a smooth transition, Clermont County Child Support Services urges parents to:

  • Make sure Child Support Services has their correct address on file.
  • Keep their e-QuickPay card until they spend down the balance. The balance will NOT transfer. The card can be used after July 1.

The smiONE payment card offers EMV chip security, mobile wallet, secondary cards, no fees or teller withdrawals, and more in-network ATMs.

“The new card brings many benefits to parents,” said Brenda Gilreath, deputy director of Clermont County Child Support Services. “However, it’s very important that we have their latest address information to ensure they receive the card timely.”

Clermont County Child Support serves 45,391 individuals, of which 18,629 are children.

Visit jfs.ohio.gov/OCS or www.clermontsupportskids.org., or contact Clermont County Child Support at 513-732-7248 or 800-571-0943.

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May 28, 2019

Judy Eschmann, Director of Job & Family Services, is retiring

Judy Eschmann

BATAVIA, Ohio (May 28, 2019) – Judy Eschmann, the Director of the Clermont County Department of Job & Family Services, is retiring on May 31 after five-and-a-half years at the helm of the agency here, and a career of 33 years in social work.

That can be a tough and challenging profession, but for Eschmann, it’s been a rewarding one. The Batavia native went to the University of Cincinnati intending to become a school teacher or social worker. After college, she took the civil service test required to work for what was then known as the county welfare department.

“Hamilton County hired me (a very young and green version of me) and I set out to ‘save the world’ and the next 33 ½ years just flew by,” she says.

As a lobby receptionist for Hamilton County, she was the first face that hundreds of people saw each day as they came in for assistance. “I worked my way up a career ladder and had an opportunity to work in many positions including case worker, supervisor, trainer, and policy coordinator,” Judy said. “In 2010, I became the director of Clinton County DJFS which is structured very similar to Clermont DJFS, but on a much smaller scale. It was a great place to learn about all the connections among agency programs including funding, shared services, program mandates and overlaps and most importantly our shared customers.

“In 2013, I became director of Clermont County DJFS and have loved every minute of it,” she says.

As director in Clermont County, Judy said she is most proud of the summer youth employment program that DJFS manages and that enlists local employers to hire youth from low-income families for summer jobs. Those jobs, which pay $10 an hour, can make a big difference to the kids – and their families.

“I remember only having a few months to pull that program together,” she says.” Our entire agency assisted with identifying eligible youth as well as reaching out and recruiting employers to serve as worksites. That team effort was the foundation for a program that has grown each year and served hundreds of youth.”

Eschmann says that it’s easy to misunderstand exactly what DJFS does – because it encompasses so many divisions.

“The name of Job and Family Services is vague and does not describe who we are, and most people don’t realize what we do,” she says. “We are a social service agency with a team of dedicated, talented, compassionate staff. In our Public Assistance Division, we assist families with temporary and long-term benefits (food, cash and Medicaid). In our OhioMeansJobs Center, we provide services to job seekers and employment training. In our Child Support Division, we establish paternity and enforce child support orders. In our Children’s Protective Services Division, we work with families to overcome barriers to keep children safe.”

As she starts a new chapter, Eschmann says, “I’m so glad I had the opportunity to end my JFS career in the county I call home. I believe the programs we administer help assist individuals and families with self-sufficiency, assist with supporting a healthy community and assist with keeping children safe. I am fortunate to work with a talented team and all our accomplishments were possible because of my team.”

After relaxing with her family a bit at home, Eschmann says she’s ready for a new career. “While I’m not as young or as green as I once was, I still have a fair amount of ‘save the world’ left in me.”

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February 6, 2019

Clermont County courts, other offices to close Friday for detective’s services

Detective Bill Brewer

BATAVIA, Ohio (Feb. 6, 2019) – All Clermont County courts and many county offices will be closed Friday, Feb. 8, to allow employees to attend, view or participate in services for Sheriff’s Detective Bill Brewer, who lost his life in the line of duty on Feb. 2.

CLOSED

Sheriff’s Office: Administrative offices close at noon Thursday and all day Friday.

Common Pleas Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday. This also includes Probation, Law Library, and Court Services.

Juvenile Court/Probate Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday.

Prosecutor’s Office: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday.

Domestic Relations Court: Closes at 2 p.m. Thursday and all day Friday. All hearings will be scheduled to the next available time.

Board of County Commissioners’ office, and departments including Water Resources Administration Building, Building Inspection, Permit Central, Job & Family Services, OhioMeansJobs/Clermont County, and Department of Community & Economic Development: Closed Friday.

Municipal Court: Closed Friday. Those who have an arraignment scheduled for Friday will be sent a new court date. They can also check the Clermontclerk.org website for updated information.

Common Pleas Clerk’s Office, Domestic Relations Clerk and all auto title offices: Closed Friday.

Public Defender’s Office: Closed Friday.

Auditor’s Office: Closed Friday.

Recorder’s Office: Closed Friday.

Engineer’s Office: Closed Friday.

Public Health: Closed Friday.

Coroner’s Office: Closed Friday; on call at 513.543.0129.

OPEN

Some county offices will be open, including the Treasurer’s Office, which is accepting payments for first-half property taxes, which are due Feb. 13. The Municipal Clerk of Court Office will be open Friday. The Board of Elections office will be open Friday.

Bus service in Clermont County, including Dial-A-Ride, will operate normally.

The county website, www.clermontcountyohio.gov, has separate pages for each county office, including how to contact them. Check there if you have questions on whether an office is open or closed.

Services for Detective Brewer are as follows:

Family and friends are invited to a public visitation from 4-8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 7, at Mount Carmel Christian Church, 4110 Bach Buxton Rd, Batavia, OH 45103, under the direction of E.C. Nurre Funeral Home in Amelia. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at the church. Interment will follow at Pierce Township Cemetery.

September 18, 2018

Amnesty to be offered for parents with child support warrants in October

BATAVIA, Ohio (Sept. 18, 2018) — Clermont County Child Support Services will offer amnesty during October to noncustodial parents who have outstanding civil warrants relating to a child support hearing. The amnesty does not include criminal cases that are filed in Common Pleas Court.

During the month of October, parents who have failed to appear for a court hearing, or to report to jail to serve a sentence relating to child support only, should contact the Child Support Services.

The child support agency will suspend or withdraw civil bench warrants for those parents who arrange to make payments toward their child support, who are employed or registered with Ohio Means Jobs, or who meet certain other criteria. There will be no fee for this service.

“The goal of the amnesty program is to reduce the number of outstanding civil warrants and to try to get these parents back on track and heading in the right direction,” said Brenda Gilreath, assistant director of Child Support Services. “This amnesty program will allow the parents who have warrants an opportunity to reach a legal resolution by working on a compliance plan – and the resolution is at no cost for the service.”

In March 2017, Child Support Services held an amnesty, and were encouraged by the response. One hundred twenty noncustodial parents had their warrants removed and began paying child support. “Our message then, and our message now, is that this is the right thing to do,” said Gilreath. “Parents who are in jail cannot hold a job, and cannot pay child support. If the parent is serious, we will do everything we can to help them so that they can help their children.”

The child support program serves more children than any other public program in Ohio, second only to the Department of Education. In 2017, the Clermont County agency collected almost $36 million in child support. The agency currently has 719 civil warrants associated with child support cases, representing $10.3 million in past due support.

To find out more, or to start arrangements, noncustodial parents can call the warrant caseworker at 513.732.7334 at any time (leave a voicemail after hours), or visit the Child Support  Office from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday during the month of October. Appointments are not necessary during these hours but are encouraged.

Noncustodial parents can also email shonna.johnson@jfs.ohio.gov. Find out more information on the Child Support Services website,  www.clermontsupportskids.org.

Media: For more information, contact Theresa Bechtel Ellison, Lead Attorney, or Brenda Gilreath, Deputy Director, at 513.732.7429. 

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July 25, 2018

August is Child Support Awareness Month

BATAVIA, Ohio – Today (July 25) Commissioners recognized August as Child Support Awareness Month.

Brenda Gilreath, Assistant Director of Clermont County Child Support Services, noted that in 2017, her office collected almost $36 million on behalf of more than 13,000 families.

Gilreath said that in Ohio, more than $1.8 billion is collected annually in child support, making it one of the most crucial elements of a family’s stability. She thanked employers for being such good partners with Child Support Services, along with the courts and Sheriff’s Office.

“During Child Support Awareness Month, we recognize all parents who are deeply committed to the success of their children,” Commissioner David Painter said as he read the proclamation. “Our children’s lives count enough to make every possible effort to ensure that a solid foundation is established for every child in Clermont County.”

This year, Clermont County Child Support is participating in a statewide coloring contest for children.

Children are encouraged to create and turn in their hand-drawn artwork to the Child Support office by 4 p.m. on Aug. 31. The artwork can be dropped off or mailed to: Child Support Services, 2400 Clermont Center Drive, Batavia Ohio 45103.

Prizes will be awarded for the top three submissions ($20, $15, $10 gift cards to McDonalds) and the first-place submission will be referred to Child Support’s state office to be considered for a statewide calendar for distribution during 2020 Child Support Awareness Month.

The artwork requires an authorization by a parent or guardian. More information on the contest can be found here: https://bit.ly/2O3Xgju.

April 10, 2017

#MarchAmnesty for civil child support warrants a success

BATAVIA, Ohio  (April 12, 2017) —  One hundred two civil warrants were withdrawn against noncustodial parents during the #MarchAmnesty campaign held by the Clermont County Division of Child Support Enforcement – making it a big success, according to Deputy Director Brenda Gilreath. In addition, 18 cases have been approved and just need to be completed.

“We set a goal of 50 parents coming in to address their situation,” Gilreath said. “So we are pleased that many more parents than that decided to get back on track.”

Child Support Enforcement, a division of Clermont County Job & Family Services, had not offered an amnesty in more than 10 years, and was unsure what kind of response it would get, Gilreath said. At the beginning of the campaign, 692 parents had civil bench warrants against them. Warrants are issued to noncustodial parents who have failed to appear for a court hearing, or to report to jail to serve a sentence relating to child support.

“The warrant hangs over the parent. Even a traffic stop can lead to jail,” Gilreath said. “The amnesty was an effort to get these parents back on track, so that they could then begin contributing again to their children’s support.”

Thus far, 120 warrants have either been recalled or are pending completion, said Gilreath. These parents owe approximately $1.9 million in back child support payments, and have paid more than $10,000 toward what is owed.

It’s unlikely that the total owed amount will ever be repaid, acknowledged Theresa Ellison, a staff attorney for Child Support Enforcement.  “But what we were really trying to do was to have these parents make a good faith effort to begin paying again. It’s important that they continue to pay going forward on a consistent basis.

“Otherwise, cases languish and sit there and nothing happens,” Ellison said. “It’s more important that these families start getting consistent support.”

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February 1, 2017

County to offer amnesty for parents with child support warrants

BATAVIA, Ohio (Feb.1, 2017) — Clermont County’s Department of Job and Family Services, Division of Child Support Enforcement, will offer amnesty during March to noncustodial parents who have outstanding civil warrants relating to a child support hearing. The amnesty does not include criminal cases that are filed in Common Pleas Court.

During the month of March, parents who have failed to appear for a court hearing, or to report to jail to serve a sentence relating to child support only, should contact the Child Support Enforcement Office.

The child support agency will suspend or withdraw civil bench warrants for those parents who arrange to make payments toward their child support, who are employed or registered with Ohio Means Jobs, or who meet certain other criteria.

“The goal of the amnesty program is to reduce the number of outstanding civil warrants and to try to get these parents back on track and heading in the right direction,” said Brenda Gilreath, assistant director of Child Support Enforcement.  “This amnesty program will enable the parents who have warrants an opportunity to reach a legal resolution by working on a compliance plan – and the resolution is at no cost for the service.”

The child support program serves more children than any other public program in Ohio, second only to the Department of Education. In 2016, the Clermont County agency collected more than $36 million in child support. The agency currently has 692 civil warrants associated with child support cases.

This amnesty program does not include a negotiation for the reduction of child support owed.

To find out more, or to start arrangements, noncustodial parents can call their caseworkers at 513.732.7248 at any time (leave a voicemail after hours), or visit the Child Support Enforcement office from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday during the month of March. Appointments are not necessary during these hours but are encouraged. Noncustodial parents can find direct phone numbers and email addresses for caseworkers on the agency website which is www.clermontsupportskids.org.

Email inquiries can be submitted to clermontsupportskids@jfs.ohio.gov.

Media: For more information, contact Theresa Bechtel Ellison, Lead Attorney, or Brenda Gilreath, Deputy Director, at 513.732.7429. 

June 28, 2016

Child Support Division to hold employer workshop, attorney training in August

BATAVIA, Ohio (June 28, 2016) – August is Child Support Awareness Month, and in preparation, the Clermont County Department of Job & Family Services, Division of Child Support, is holding several activities in August:

(Employer Workshop: 8:30-11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Aug. 4, at Minning Hall, Clermont Mercy Hospital, 3000 Hospital Drive, Batavia. The workshop will provide information on implementing child support and medical support orders, new hire reporting, and lump sum requirements and processes. The deadline to register is July 22. You can register by email at ClermontSupportsKids@jfs.ohio.gov with employer name and number of attendees. (This event has been canceled.)

Child Support Program Awareness Regional Attorney Training:  9-11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 19, Batavia Township Community Center, 1535 Clough Pike, Batavia, Ohio.  Legislative updates will be provided on the Child Support Guidelines Bill (Senate Bill 262). There will also be a section on problems associated with child support and deceased obligees. This free training was approved by the Supreme Court of Ohio for two Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Credits.  Registration is required, so please email ClermontSupportsKids@jfs.ohio.gov with name, address and Supreme Court attorney registration number no later than Aug. 12.

Wednesday, Aug. 3, is the annual Wear Green Day for child support awareness. Residents and program partners are encouraged to wear green that day.

In 2015, the Division of Child Support collected $35.7 million in child support. At the end of 2015, Child Support had 13,661 active cases, which included more than 48,000 participants – parents and children.

For additional information on these events and other Clermont County Child Support Program Awareness activities, please visit www.clermontsupportskids.org.

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