H. B. 2977
(By Delegates Manchin and Caputo)
[Introduced February 12, 2003; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary.]
A BILL to amend and reenact section eight hundred two, article
thirteen, chapter forty-eight of the code of West Virginia,
one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to
compelling the investment of excess child support for the
benefit of the child.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section eight hundred two, article thirteen, chapter
forty-eight of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred
thirty-one, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as
ARTICLE 13. GUIDELINES FOR CHILD SUPPORT AWARDS.
§48-13-802. Investment of child support.
(a) The court has the discretion, in appropriate cases, to direct that a portion of child support be placed in trust and
invested for future educational or other needs of the child. The
court may order such investment when all of the child's day-to-day
needs are being met such that, with due consideration of the age of
the child, the child is living as well as his or her parents or
when the child receives direct or collateral support benefits
provided by third parties, whether those benefits are in cash or in
kind, or whether those benefits are supplied gratuitously or by
providence: Provided, That the value thereof to the child equals
at least fifteen percent of the ordered support being provided by
the noncustodial parent.
(b) If the amount of child support ordered per child exceeds
the sum of two thousand dollars per month, the court is required to
make a finding, in writing, as to whether investments shall be made
as provided for in subsection (a) of this section.
(c) A trustee named by the court shall use the judgment and
care under the circumstances then prevailing that persons of
prudence, discretion and intelligence exercise in the management of
their own affairs, not in regard to speculation but in regard to
the permanent disposition of their funds, considering the probable
income as well as the probable safety of their capital. A trustee shall be governed by the provisions of the uniform prudent investor
act as set forth in article six-c, chapter forty-four of this code.
The court may prescribe the powers of the trustee and provide for
the management and control of the trust. Upon petition of a party
or the child's guardian or next friend and upon a showing of good
cause, the court may order the release of funds in the trust from
time to time.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to conserve for the benefit
of the child that part of ordered support which, intended for the
care of the child, is being provided by third party sources, with
the result that those excess funds, plus their earnings, will
remain the property of the child and not be spent as surplusage by
the custodial parent.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would