FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)

General Questions | Custodial Parents | Non-Custodial Parents

General Questions

Custodial Parents


Non-Custodial Parents

 

Who is eligible to receive child support services?

Any parent, guardian, aunt, uncle or grandparent who has physical custody of the minor child(ren) in need of financial support.

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Whom should I contact about child support or about my case?

Call the Kids Line at 1-800-840-8757, which is available 24 hours a day. The automated response provides only certain information. You can access your specific case information using your Social Security or ISETS (Indiana Support Enforcement Tracking System) or write to the State of Indiana.

When neither parent is in the home, such as in a foster care situation, each parent has a case number. Case numbers should be kept confidential because they allow access to sensitive case information.

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Can the Child Support Division modify support orders?

Our office can petition the court to modify support orders if you complete and return the Status Request form and return it with your most recent W-2; your four most current pay stubs; and receipts for daycare expenses, if applicable.

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Can the Child Support Division help me get a divorce?

The Child Support Division cannot by law get involved in divorce-related situations. Contact a private attorney for divorce matters.

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If the non-custodial parent misses payments, will the Child Support Division seek jail time for him/her?

The Child Support Division has several methods of enforcement. If the non-custodial parent fails to make payments, criminal prosecution and subsequent jail time may result.

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I cannot make it to a court hearing. How do I reschedule?

If you have been ordered to appear for a court hearing, either you or your attorney must appear. If neither you nor your attorney is present, the court may issue a bench warrant for your arrest for failure to appear. In advance of a hearing, you may file with the court a request to continue (reschedule) the hearing. However, if you do not receive notice that the court has granted your request, you must still attend the hearing.

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When child support is taken from the non-custodial parent's paycheck, why does it take so long for the custodial parent to receive payment?

Several factors may cause delays. Employers may not send payments until the end of the month, or they may not properly identify the check with the correct case number or ID. If the employer's payroll department is located in another state, payments also may be late. Additionally, if more than one child support agency is involved in the case, a delay may result.

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I have payment questions; whom should I contact?

For payment information, call the Kids Line at 1-800-840-8757. Child Support Enforcement agencies do not handle payments, including tax refunds that are intercepted. Every person who is at least $150 behind in his/her child support payments is automatically submitted for tax intercept, federal and state.

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Do I have to report a change of address?

Yes. You must report in writing to change your address:

Elkhart County Clerk Support Desk
315 S. Second St.
Elkhart, IN 46516

You also can complete this Change of Address form and submit it to the clerk.

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How can I make a status request or get an update?

If you send requests or updates in writing, we can get answers much quicker. Download and fill out a Status Request form and return it to our office. The Child Support Division will send a status update to you in writing as soon as the information is obtained. Caseworkers are very dedicated and care about your children. Because of the volume of cases we handle, we are trying our very best to take care of each and every case. Out-of-state cases are difficult because we are at the mercy of the child support offices in the other states. We will update you when we are updated.

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What are child support guidelines based on?

Support orders are based on both parents' income, daycare expenses, health insurance and "shared parenting" visitation credit.

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What are Locator Services?

Federal law requires each state to centrally store all child support cases and support orders. Basic information in each State Case Registry is sent to the Federal Case Registry, which is a national database that enables states to locate custodial and non-custodial parents. Information in the database is compared whenever a new entry is made, alerting states when a participant is involved in a case or order in another state. Additionally, child support cases and orders in the Federal Case Registry are compared to data in the National Directory of New Hires, which keeps a listing of all employees in the United States.

Local child support agencies access the state and federal databases to locate parents and their employment information in order to establish payment methods or to initiate income tax return federal and state intercepts. See the Federal Parent Locator Service Web site for more information.

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Is the Child Support Division my attorney?

No. The Child Support Division represents the State of Indiana on behalf of your child. You have the right to consult your own attorney about child support issues. For other matters, such as divorce, visitation or custody issues, you need to contact a private attorney.

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How do I get my case reviewed for possible modification?

You need to contact the Child Support Division. You will need to apply to the program if you are not already a program participant and provide the following:

  • The name, address and employer of the non-custodial/custodial parent
  • Your current address, phone number and Social Security number
  • Your current employer's name and address
  • Documentation of your last two tax returns, last four check stubs, bank statements or other financial information
  • Any verifiable information available to you concerning the other party
  • A brief and to-the-point statement expressing your reasons that you believe there has been a sufficient change in cirumstances to warrant a modification of the order

Your case will not be reviewed if you fail to provide any of the required information. Whenever the court reviews a support order for modification, it is possible the support order may go up or down. Download a Status Request form.

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I am calling on behalf of an escrow company. With whom should I speak regarding a lien release?

Provide the case, court or Social Security number or name of the individual in writing via fax: (574) 522-4965. His/her file will be reviewed, and you will receive a response within a timely manner with the current arrearage amounts.

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I represent the employer of an individual who pays child support. The employee says that his child support is delinquent, but we make the payments as ordered. What is the problem?

Confidentiality codes permit our office to discuss case status with only the non-custodial parent. Please have him/her contact us. As a result of your inquiry, we will review the non-custodial parent's case and have information ready for him/her when he/she contacts our office.

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Why should I join the Title IV-D Program?

The program will help you to meet the medical and financial needs of your child(ren).

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What do I need to provide the Prosecutor's Office?

Any court documentation regarding custody and support orders currently in place; child's birth certificate; and address and employment information for both you and the non-custodial parent. Visit the Getting Started page for details.

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When can I expect to receive child support once the order has been entered?

You should receive your support within 2-3 days from the Indiana Department of Child Services, Indianapolis, once payment has been received. Allow at least four weeks for an income withholding order to ake effect.

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If an income withholding order was issued in my case, when will I receive payment?

Employers must begin deducting child support within 10 days of receiving the income withholding order. The employer then has 10 more days to submit to our system distribution unit in Indianapolis, which will then disburse the payment to the custodial parent.

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Can I open a case only for arrearage?

If you have an enforceable court order for child support, you can open a case for arrearage only by filling out an application.

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When does collection begin from the non-custodial parent once my case is open?

The collection process begins immediately through various enforcement methods, such as income withholding for state and federal tax intercept and credit bureau reporting.

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The non-custodial parent took my child(ren) away during a designated weekend but will not bring the child(ren) back. Can the Child Support Division help?

The Child Support Division does not have the authority to handle such disputes. However, the Victim Assistance Division of the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney may be able to help. You also should contact your local police department to file a complaint.

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Can the Child Support Division help me get a restraining order against the non-custodial parent?

The Child Support Division cannot by law get involved in these situations. Contact the Victim Assistance Division for protective order paperwork.

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How long can I get child support?

Indiana law declares child support to be enforceable until the child turns 19 years of age, unless the court finds the child is self-sufficient prior to age 19.

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If a non-custodial parent is hiding assets or not reporting all income, how do I get child support?

It is difficult to collect in a situation like this, but the Child Support Division may access various sources of information to verify assets and income. To assist our investigation, please provide all the information you have regarding the non-custodial parent's employment, salary, bank accounts, real or personal property and other valuable information.

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I am a non-custodial parent whose passport application has been denied because I have a child support arrearage. What should I do?

Contact the Child Support Division to make arrangements to pay your child support arrearage. If you owe child support in more than one state, you must make arrangements with all involved states before you will receive your passport. Because passports are issued through the federal goverment, states must request to have your name removed from the Passport Denial Program. You will then need to reapply for a passport.

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Can I find out when my last child support payment was received and how much it was?

Call the Kids Line at 1-800-840-8757. Have your Social Security or ISETS number ready and follow the automated voice response to access your case information.

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I am a non-custodial parent and disagree with the amount of arrearage. What should I do?

Contact the Child Support Division to request a review of your payment history. The Child Support Division will review your request and send you a status report. If you recorded a payment that is not included in your payment history, you must provide a copy of the front and back of the cancelled check. If you disagree, you can request a meeting, at which time you will need to provide your payment records and calculations.

If you feel you no longer owe arrearage due to the emancipation of your child, his/her marriage or other reasons, ask for a Request for Review of Arrears so that you my clarify your reasons and have the dispute on record. Download and print a Status Request form.

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My driver's license was suspended, but I don't understand why. What should I do?

Your license was suspended because our records show that you are deliquent in payments. If you dispute this, complete the Request for Review form that arrived with the Intent to Suspend Notice and send the Request for Review form to the Child Support Division.

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If my tax refund has been taken even though I have been making payments as ordered, can I get my refund back?

If your account has no outstanding balance, you may get your refund back. Remember that you may have had arrearage, which withheld income may not have covered. You must request an administrative review in writing and provide the Child Support Office with a copy of your offset notice showing the exact amount of your refund that was intercepted.

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I have always made payments by income withholding. Why am I delinquent?

Several factors may result in delinquent status. Until an income withholding order is implemented, the non-custodial parent must make payments to the INSCCU (Indiana State Central Collection Unit), P.O. Box 7130, Indianapolis, IN 46207-7130.

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