41st Circuit grants 'Amnesty Week'

CRYSTAL FALLS, Mich. (WLUC) - The 41st Circuit's 'Amnesty' Week will allow individuals who have bench warrants out for their arrest to approach the Friend of the Court without being arrested or punished.

The Amnesty event will run December 11 through December 15.

"A lot of times, someone, you know, may fall behind in paying child support whether it's mom or dad and they don't come to court when they're supposed to," said Jodie Barrette of the Menominee County Friend of the Court. "They get a bench warrant issued for them and they're afraid to come deal with it."

"We will help assist them w their case to see whether or not there's an adjustment that needs to be done, do we need to update information," said Heidi Vanslooten of the Dickinson and Iron County Friend of the Court.

The amnesty does not apply to felony cases or warrants.

The idea came from a state-wide amnesty event and the 41st Circuit says they could not do it alone.

"It's support of all of the judges in all three counties and that's important to us," said Vanslooten. "The judges are willing to work with us and work with the recipients and payers of support to make sure that everybody is treated fairly."

The amnesty event allows individuals to stop in, call or contact the Friend of the Court Office even if they just have questions about their specific case.

The 41st says it could not come at a better time for families.

"Those who have gone without seeing their children as a result of having a bench warrant out, this allows some parenting to be, to begin again," said Barrette.

"Especially right before Christmas, if there is a parent who has avoided the friend of the court's office or has fallen behind on child support and there's a bench warrant for them," said Barrette. "Let's reunite some children with their parents for the holidays."



 
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