No. DCSS does not represent either party, but represents the public interest in having children supported. You may retain an attorney to represent you.
Can I file for custody or visitation?
Yes, but DCSS will not be involved in these issues.
When will the first payment be due, following the hearing?
This depends on the court order. The Court may order payments to begin the first of the next month or may order the payments to begin at a later date. Make your payments based upon the court's order.
Who should I make the payments to?
All payments should be made through the State Disbursement Unit. Payments should not be made directly to the custodial parent.
What is the Facilitator's Office and how can it assist me?
The Facilitator's Office (located in Room 101 on the 1st floor of the LJC at 341 The City Drive in Orange) provides child support information and assistance to parents. It can also help parents obtain and complete court forms and all services are provided free of charge. The Facilitator's Office is not part of the Department of Child Support Services.
What if custody/visitation changes?
If custody/visitation changes significantly, please contact DCSS so that your file can be reviewed for a modification. Also, you may contact the Facilitator's Office in Room 101 to ask about how you can file for modification.
What if I lose my job and cannot pay?
You should ask DCSS to review your case, but remember to make all payments that become due. DCSS may file a motion with the court to modify your support order.
How does a wage assignment work?
The amount due for the child support is deducted from your paycheck(s) each month and paid directly to DCSS.
What if I do not have health coverage through my employer?
The court may take this into consideration. However, the court still has the authority to order you to obtain some form of health insurance for your child(ren). If you do have health insurance coverage available through your employer, the Court may order you to provide coverage for your child(ren).
What if the custodial parent is on welfare; does the money go to that parent?
No. The money will go to the County to reimburse it for the cost of the aid being provided to the custodial parent and/or child(ren).
What if I am already ordered to pay support in another county or in the same county for different children?
The Court will take this into account when you appear at your hearing. Make sure to have any statements and/or court orders regarding those cases, and any proof of payment on those cases, at the hearing with you.
How long am I responsible for paying the child support?
It generally continues until the child turns eighteen years old. However, if the child remains a full-time high school student, child support will continue until the child graduates from high school or turns nineteen, whichever occurs first.** However, if there are arrears (past due child support) owing, then the arrears continue to be due until the account is paid in full. ** There may be exceptional circumstances where child support may be ordered to continue beyond these dates.