Sunday, January 13, 2008

How to Navigate the Child Support System


Okay, so you have gone to court and have a child support order, now where do you go from here? Just because you have a child support order does not mean money will start arriving in the mail immediately. It generally takes six weeks just to get into the child support system. It will take even longer to start receiving checks if the parent ordered to pay child support is not working or you and the agency don't know where they are. It is up to you to help the child support agency in these instances in order to get your child's money. Depending on what state you live in there are rules and regulations to follow, and time frames involved, but you can help your own case by working with your caseworker. These are some basic tips to get your case moving through the system faster when such a glitch has occurred.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You'll Need

  • your court order signed by the Judge or Magistrate.
  • most recent photo of the parent ordered to pay the child support.
  • all updated information you have on the person, including age, date of birth,social security number and possible places they may have worked or lived.
  • notebook with paper and pockets for holding information, leaflets and your court order
  • pen



Step One

Most child support agencies take walk-ins but it is a good idea to call ahead and see if an appointment is necessary. If so make one and get the name of your caseworker.

Step Two

On the day you meet with your caseworker, make sure to get your case number and court order number. Write them down.

Step Three

Give your caseworker all the information you brought with you, such as a copy of the court order, photo of the absent parent (which is the name for the person ordered to pay child support)and all personal information you may have on that person, particularly if they are not working or have disappeared from sight.

Step Four

Listen carefully to your caseworker. Write down any and all the information you are given and file it away in your notebook. Ask all your questions such as is the order in the system yet, do they know the place of employment of the individual, and what is the exact amount you will receive and how often once the order is in place and a wage withholding has been issued to the employer.

Step Five

If the party has dropped out of sight make sure to give the caseworker all addresses they have lived at in the past if you know them along with the address of the party's parents, sisters, brothers or even their current mate if known.

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