Drunk drivers in Texas who kill a child’s parent or guardian in an accident are now obligated to pay child support, per legislation that took effect on Friday.
The initial filing of Texas House Bill 393, also known as Bentley’s Law, occurred on November 14 of last year. On June 2, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed the bill.
The Republican governor wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, “Any time a parent passes is tragic, but a death at the hands of a drunk driver is especially heinous,.” “I was proud to sign HB 393 into law this year to require offenders to pay child support for the children of their victims.”
According to the law, intoxicated manslaughter offenders are only liable until the victim turns 18 or graduates from high school.
“The court shall determine an amount to be paid monthly for the support of the child until the child reaches 18 years of age or has graduated from high school, whichever is later,” the text states.
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Determining Child Support Payments and Options for Incarcerated Parents
Multiple factors determine the quantity of child support, including the child’s educational needs, medical requirements, and reasonable child care costs. The child’s accustomed standard of living is also considered.
Those who are incarcerated and unable to make payments may be eligible for a payment plan.
“The defendant shall begin payments not later than the first anniversary of the date of the defendant’s release from the facility,” states the law. “The defendant may enter into a payment plan to address any arrearage that exists on the date of the defendant’s release.”
“The defendant must pay all arrearages regardless of whether the restitution payments were scheduled to terminate while the defendant was confined or imprisoned in the correctional facility.” the law adds.
Source: Fox News