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39-755. Actions by secretary to establish parentage and to enforce support rights; necessary parties to proceedings; counsel; orders; application of section. (a) In cases where the secretary for children and families is deemed to have an assignment of support rights in accordance with the provisions of K.S.A. 39-709, and amendments thereto, the secretary is authorized to bring a civil action in the name of the state of Kansas or of the obligee whose support rights are assigned to enforce such support rights, establish an order for medical support and, when appropriate or necessary, to establish the parentage of a child. The secretary may also enforce any assigned support order or file a motion to modify any such order.

(b) The secretary for children and families shall be deemed to hold the interests of all persons, officials and agencies having an interest in the assignment. The court shall determine, in accordance with applicable provisions of law, the parties necessary to the proceeding and whether independent counsel should be appointed to represent any party to the assignment or any other person having an interest in the support right. In any action or proceeding brought by the secretary for children and families to establish paternity or to establish, modify or enforce a support obligation, the department for children and families' attorney or the attorneys with whom the agency contracts to provide legal services shall represent the Kansas department for children and families. Nothing in this section shall be construed to modify any statutory mandate, authority or confidentiality required by any governmental agency. Any representation by such attorney shall not be construed to create an attorney-client relationship between the attorney and any party other than the Kansas department for children and families.

(c) Any support order made by the court in such a proceeding shall direct that payments be made to the secretary for children and families so long as there is in effect an assignment of support rights to the secretary and, upon notification by the secretary to the court that the assignment is terminated, that payments be made to the person or family.

(d) The provisions of this section shall also apply to cases brought by the secretary on behalf of persons who have applied for services pursuant to K.S.A. 39-756, and amendments thereto.

(e) In all child support actions initiated before the effective date of the governor's 2012 executive reorganization order 41, whenever the department of social and rehabilitation services, or words of like effect, are referred to or designated in case names and captions, pleadings, and all filings of any kind used by the department for children and families in the ordinary course of business with any court, business, agency, person or political subdivision of this state, such reference or designation shall be deemed to apply to the Kansas department for children and families.

History: L. 1976, ch. 210, § 4; L. 1980, ch. 125, § 3; L. 1985, ch. 115, § 46; L. 1986, ch. 137, § 24; L. 1994, ch. 292, § 13; L. 2014, ch. 115, § 87; July 1.

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