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Does the DA ever handle child support cases for arrears? Is there anyone to report the Dept of Child Support to?

Riverside, CA |

My ex is over 38,000 in arrears. It took over a year for the DCSS to even file a contempt charge and now its been another long year of continuances and the motion has still not gone forward. I feel that DCSS lets the non custodial parent get away with murder. He is able to waltz in and get a continuance or not pay, make up jobs, etc. and there is no recourse. In the meantime, I pay for everything and he doesn't even see our child.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. I have heard from clients that Child Support Services drags their feet on a lot of things, but that is because they are simply overwhelmed with the case load they have. You would get far better results on child support enforcement with a private attorney. But that will cost a lot of money, especially if the non-custodial parent is being difficult. If you know where there is a source of money from which you can be paid, then your best bet is to hire a private family law attorney and pay out of pocket for his/her services. The other parent can't possibly stay "underground" forever. I mean, he's screwed if he ever files tax returns, wants to buy a house, etc. He can't file for bankruptcy, and if he ever gets a decent job, you can garnish his wages, intercept his tax returns, levy his bank account, put a lien on his home, etc. Your arrears will accumulate 10% interest per year so while I know things are tough making ends meet, you may get a big payday someday in the future for your children. Best of luck to you.

    If you found this answer helpful, let me know by clicking the "Mark as Helpful" button or "Best Answer" at the bottom of this answer. By answering this question, the Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton does not intend to form an attorney-client relationship with the asking party. The answers posted on this website should not be construed as legal advice. The Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton does not make any representations about your family law matter, but rather, seeks to provide general information to the public about family-law related matters. You should consult with an attorney to discuss the specific facts of your case. Thank you.


  2. There's an alternative: hire a private support collection attorney; some will work on a contingency fee basis (i.e., they get paid a percentage of what they collect for you). Otherwise, since CSSD works for you for free, you can't expect much customer service. DCSS exists mostly to collect aid reimbursement for the taxpayers, and only very secondarily to collect child support in non-aid cases. They're badly over-worked..


  3. Are the children over 18 and your case arrears only now? DCSS places lower priority on cases that do not have an active order for support. I also agree that you should seek outside assistance from a child support collection agency. DCSS may let him get away with murder, but the court and/or sheriff's civil collections unit will not be so forgiving.

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