June 28, 2012 06:07
State Rep. Vince Pierre wants his child support payments reduced due to his decrease in salary as an elected state lawmaker, but a hearing officer agrees with his ex-wife's assertions that the state rep is ‘voluntarily underemployed' and should not qualify for a reduction in support payments. A hearing officer's report on state Rep. Vincent Pierre's request to reduce his monthly child support payments confirms what The Independent first reported in November 2011: Pierre lied about "what he does for a living" prior to the election - and now as a state lawmaker, he says his decrease in salary qualifies him for a reduction in child support payments to his two children.

Pierre, the Lafayette Democrat who unseated former state Rep. Rickey Hardy last year in a contentious race for the House District 44 seat, repeatedly maintained throughout his campaign that he was a businessman and co-owner of a local dry-cleaning business. But when he recently asked for a reduction in child support payments due to his decrease in salary as a state rep., the facts of a hearing officer conference contradict much of Pierre's pre-election employment claims:
When the last support judgment went into effect, Mr. Pierre earned approximately $5,384/mo. from the dry cleaning facility.

Some time in March 2010 Mr. Pierre was terminated from the dry cleaning facility by the majority interest owner. Subsequently, he worked as a land man earning $150/day, however, he did only one job which lasted from April 2011 through June 2011. After he concluded this job, Mr. Pierre began concentrating on his campaign for state representative.

As a state representative he earns approximately $1,400/mo. except when he is in session from March through June at which time he earns approximately $3,000/mo.

[His ex-wife] argues that the defendant is voluntarily underemployed. She argues that he has a college degree in marketing and is capable of earning more income. According to Mr. Pierre's attorney, he has filled out numerous job applications, however, it is hard for him to find work due to his political schedule when he is in session.

Hearing officer finds that Mr. Pierre is not entitled to a reduction in child support ... Vincent Pierre shall be cast with court costs.
Other court documents reveal that Pierre is ordered to pay $1,443.55 to his ex-wife in monthly child support payments, a figure that's more than his current salary except for the few months he's in session every year.

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