Nova Scotia Liberals are pushing for tougher enforcement to help families collect about $80 million in court-ordered spousal and child support payments.
Kelly Regan, the member for the Halifax-area district of Bedford-Birch Cove, says there are nearly 9,000 cases in arrears, almost 2,200 of which are in excess of $10,000.
The money is collected under the Maintenance Enforcement Program which is administered by the Department of Justice.
Justice spokeswoman Tara Walsh says half the outstanding amount involves cases that are being actively monitored and enforced.
The rest is either owed by people who have no means of paying, can't be found, or are living outside of the province.
Walsh says they have a full-time investigator dedicated to tracking down people who owe spousal and child support.
She says in the past four years, the program has reduced arrears by about $22 million while increasing compliance by about 10 per cent.