Parents of a child might separate for different reasons. The child could be under the care of only one parent who may not have the ability to provide all of the necessary care for their welfare. Feeding, clothing, medical, school fees, and other expenses. It is possible that this financial burden may prove too heavy for one person. Child support laws in Connecticut aims to help with this and balance the costs of raising a child. They determine how much each custodial parent can receive from non-custodial parents.
However, not every states in the US enforces child support. You can find the full list from “Which States in the US do not enforce child support?“.
The Process For Child Support After Divorce
Custodial parents may choose to have an attorney represent them in court, or they can represent themselves. The easiest route is to contact the Office of Child Support Services, which is part of the Connecticut Department of Social Services. It handles child support cases. A custodial parent can apply by completing and submitting the form for child support. The application is free of charge and there will be no charges. However, the OCSS will collect $35 per year from child support payments. If the child support paid exceeds $550, and the custodial parent is not a recipient of public financial assistance, this amount will be collected.
OCSS assists in locating the non custodial parent to notify them of the request for child maintenance. The Office of Child Support Services will take steps to determine the paternity of the child in such cases. DNA testing helps confirm paternity. Requirement of some documents by the OCSS from the custodial parent is important in order to file for child support. These documents may include identification cards, pay slips, and details about the non-custodial parents. The failure to submit the documents may cause the stalling of the case and the parent not receiving cash benefits.
Once all items have been provided and paternity established, the OCSS will be able to establish a child support order. To cover medical expenses or payments, the OCSS may issue medical support orders. The OCSS will then receive the payments from non-custodial parents and distribute them to the custodial parents.
Visit the Office of Child Support Services application for further details. A quick guide to child support processes in the state is here.
How Do You Receive Child Support in Connecticut
The OCSS allows custodial parents to pick their preferred method of receiving child support payments. The money could come in via a direct deposit arrangement. In this case, the funds are applied to the bank account of the parent receiving support. For this arrangement to work, the custodial parent must already have an existing savings account or a checking account to register with the OCSS.
Parents who do not have a bank account can opt to receive their child support payments through the Connecticut child support debit card. The funds will be paid directly to the card and used from there. Holders of this debit card can use them to make withdrawals or purchase items. Additional details on this are available on the Connecticut State Official Site.
The Maximum Amount That Your Family Can Receive
In deciding how much the non-custodial parent owes as child support, the court makes use of certain guidelines. These guidelines give an idea of what the financial obligation should be after considering things like income, number of children, medical benefits, etc. Parents whose employers offer medical insurance at a reasonable cost may also have a medical insurance order set. Overall, the guidelines give a mathematical formula for fairly distributing the obligations of child support between both parents. Child support orders also change as the income of parents changes.
The child support guidelines give percentages for various income brackets ranging from $50 to $4000. Additionally, exemption to pay child support is possible for parents with income below $50. Those with a combined income greater than $4000 will have their obligation calculated by multiplying the applicable percentage for $4000 by their actual income. For more of these Child support guideline details, visit the State of Connecticut page.
Enforcement of Child Support in Connecticut
The Office of Child Support Services has a duty to also enforce the child support orders. To do this, certain actions may be taken against parents who default and are owing child support. The OCSS may seize various financial assets of the parent, make a report to the credit bureau, withhold income, intercept lottery winnings, withhold tax refunds and even initiate a passport denial for the parent. These are done with hopes of coercing the non-custodial parent to pay what he/she owes. In some cases, eventually prosecution of the parent is possible for failure to pay up. It is important to note that child support services can still be provided even if the non-custodial parent does not reside in the state.