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Riverside County

Department of Child Support Services

Frequently Asked Questions

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Collections

Q.As soon as the other parent is notified about enforcement, he/she moves. How will I ever be able to collect child support?

Q.I have a California support order. The noncustodial parent now lives outside of California. I asked the RCDCSS to try to help me collect support. The judge in that state lowered the payment amount. Is that legal?

Q.I have a California support order. The noncustodial parent now lives in another state. I know he/she has land and other assets in California. Can the RCDCSS help me collect on the past-due amount.

Q.Can paternity be established for my child if the father lives in another state?

Q.What should I do if I am planning to move to another state?

Q.What happens when the noncustodial parent has money to pay child support but still won't pay?

Q.What should I do if the noncustodial parent moves away?

Q.I have a California support order. The other parent lives in another state. I asked the other state to help me collect support. The judge lowered child support. Is that legal?

Q.May I look at the payment records?

Establishing an Order

Q.I am sure the other parent is willing to pay support. Can we make an agreement between ourselves and present it to the court?

Q.My spouse and I are working out a joint custody agreement. How would the court decide the amount of child support for us?

Q.Can the other parent be required to include our child(ren) under the group health insurance available where he/she works?

Q.The other parent is in jail. Can I get support?

Q.I am a noncustodial parent. What should I do when I get the Summons and Complaint?

Q.What if a noncustodial parent ignores or forgets about the Summons and Complaint?

Q.If I file a Response with the court, will I have a chance to talk to the judge?

Q.How will the court decide how much child support I have to pay as a noncustodial parent?

Q.How will my employer know how much money to take out of my paycheck to pay my child support?

Q.Is there any way to avoid having to go to court?

Q.What else is in a stipulation?

Establishing Paternity

Q.What if he denies he is the father, or says he’s not sure?

Q.Is there an age limit for the genetic tests to be done on a child?

Q.Despite the genetic testing, the alleged father still says he is not the father. Will the case be closed?

Q.What happens if the father leaves the state before paternity is established?

Q.Why should paternity be established if the father has no money to support the child?

Q.What happens if paternity is established?

Q.Can paperwork be filed to establish paternity while the mother is pregnant, before the child is born?

Q.Can I get child support if I'm not sure who the father of my child is?

Q.Can paternity be established for my child if the father lives in another state?

Q.What if one parent wants to sign the Declaration of Paternity and the other parent does not?

Q.What if the parents do not want to provide all of the information requested on the Declaration of Paternity form?

Q.Can minor parents complete and sign the Declaration of Paternity?

Q.Can a mother sign the form if the father is deceased during the pregnancy?

Q.If the parents return to the hospital to sign a Declaration of Paternity after the mother and baby have been discharged, are hospital staff required to accept and process the form?

Q.Will the father’s name be placed on the birth certificate if the Declaration of Paternity form is not signed?

Q.Can the parents rescind or cancel a Declaration of Paternity after it is signed?

Q.Can new parents complete and sign the Declaration of Paternity when a child is born alive and then dies shortly after birth? ( A Certificate of Live Birth is prepared in these situations).

Q.Can any special arrangements or provisions be made for completing a Declaration of Paternity when the father is in jail or away in the military and cannot be present at the hospital or should both the mother and father sign the Declaration of Paternity form together in front of the same witness?

Q.What can a mother do with regard to a Declaration of Paternity and getting a father’s name on the birth certificate when the child’s father has died prior to the birth of the child?

Q.On or after January 1, 1997, would the Declaration of Paternity completed by parents in another state for a child born in California be accepted in California?

Q.If the mother is married to someone else but not cohabiting with them at anytime during the pregnancy, or has never filed for divorce, can she and the father who is not the husband sign the POP form?

Q.Can we accept the services of a Notary Public in another country where the father is located?

Q.What if the mother is not married and the father of the child is married to someone else?

Q.Can same sex couples who adopt a child or conceive a child through artificial insemination sign a Declaration of Paternity?

Q.How will a child benefit if the parents sign the Declaration of Paternity?

Q.Is the Paternity Opportunity Program a voluntary program for hospitals to administer?

Q.Can the Declaration of Paternity be signed prior to the birth of the child?

Q.If the parents are unmarried and a Declaration of Paternity is not completed at the hospital, does the clerk completing the birth certificate enter the other information about the father even though his name is not entered on the birth certificate?

Q.What items must be completed on a Declaration of Paternity before it becomes valid for the purpose of establishing paternity?

Q.Should both the mother and father sign the Declaration of Paternity form together in front of the same witness?

Interstate

Q.What foreign countries does your State reciprocate?

Q.Regarding the age of majority: What is the age of majority in your state?

Q.What is your State's statue of limitations for Paternity establishment?

Q.What guideline type or method does your State use to calculate child support?

Q.Regarding interest, please indicate whether your State charges interest on Missed payments, Retroactive support, and Adjudicated arrears.

Q.Can your State use income withholding for medical support enforcement? If so, describe your procedure.

Q.Does your State establish, enforce, or modify spousal maintenance orders? If yes, under what circumstances?

Q.What term does your State use to refer to income withholding ?

Q.What type of income specifically cannot be withheld, if any?

Q.With regard to employers: What is the penalty to an employer for failure to remit payments withheld?

Q.How does an obligor contest income withholding in your State?

Q.Regarding income withholding when the obligor has more than one claim for child support against his/her income, indicate: If assistance is not available, explain how employers should proceed, and provide a citation for the State law that governs how they should proceed.

Q.Does marriage constitute a rebuttable presumption of paternity? How is the presumption rebutted?

Q.Does your State have other paternity-related presumptions? If yes, briefly explain.

Q.When the custodial parent and/or other witnesses are not able to appear in person for paternity hearings, what methods of testimony are acceptable (e.g., written, videotape, teleconferencing)?

Q.What criteria for rebutting your presumptive guidelines have been established in your State?

Q.Indicate whether your State has withholding of State funds or benefits available as an enforcement remedy; and, indicate whether you have judicial procedures available, administrative procedures available or both.

Q.Indicate whether your State has other administrative enforcement remedies available.

Q.Indicate whether your State has other judicial enforcement remedies available.

Q.If your State has established specific procedures for registering administrative liens, what are the procedures that must be followed when another state wants to administer an administrative lien?

Q.Regarding enforcing other States’ orders: Has your State adopted the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act(UEFJA)? If yes, please cite.

Q.Regarding reviews: With what frequency are reviews conducted in IV-D cases (e.g., every year, every three years)?

Locating the Parent

Q.My child’s father is in the military, but I don’t know where he is stationed. Can the RCDCSS find him?

Modify an Order

Q.I am a noncustodial parent. If I lose my job, do I still have to pay child support.

Q.I am a noncustodial parent, but my child lives with me now. Can I change the child support order?

Q.My ex-spouse has remarried and has another family to support. How will this affect the support that my children are due?

Opening a Case

Q.Can I still open a child support case even if the other parent has been gone for a long time?

Q.Is my child support case open to the public?

Q.My children and I need financial assistance now. The noncustodial parent left us 10 years ago. Will the RCDCSS still try to find him/her?

Q.I want the RCDCSS to enforce my court order. Is the information I provide open to the public?

Q.I am applying for public assistance. Do I have to personally ask the other parent for child support?

Q.What does it mean to “cooperate” with the RCDCSS?

Q.What happens during an interview with the Riverside County Department of Child Support Services?

Q.What does it mean to “assign my support rights?”

Q.If the RCDCSS cannot find the noncustodial parent, does that mean I cannot get TANF or Medi-Cal benefits?

Q.What information must the other parent or I provide to the RCDCSS?

Problem Resolution

Q.How do inquiries/disputes differ from complaints?

Q.How do I file an inquiry or dispute?

Q.How long does your office have to respond to my inquiry/dispute?

Q.What is a response?

Q.When an attorney represents a person, do the same time frames for responding to inquiries or disputes apply?

Q.How long does your office have to resolve my inquiry/dispute?

Q.How do I file a complaint?

Q.How long does your office have to respond to my complaint?

Q.What type of complaints can be heard at a State Hearing?

Q.When can I request a State Hearing?

Q.How do I request a State Hearing?

Public Assistance

Q.I am on public assistance. How is child support distributed?

Q.If your office cannot find the noncustodial parent, can I still get public assistance benefits?

Wage Assignments

Q.How soon should I begin garnishing wages from an employee after receiving a court-ordered wage assignment?

Q.How long do I have to send a check in to your office?

Q.What constitutes earnings?

Q.What is the maximum amount I can withhold from my employee?

Q.I have two employees with wage assignments to your office. May I combine the withheld amounts and write one check to your office?

Q.What do I do if an employee quits?