Department of Social Services

Child Support Enforcement Program

The Department oversees the efforts of local social services districts to collect child support payments from absent parents. We found that the districts located absent parents and established paternity within the timeframes established by the federal government. However, because information had been purged from Department records, we were unable to determine whether child support cases were initially processed within the required timeframe. In addition, the districts may not have obtained court orders for child support within the required timeframe.

We also examined the Department's oversight of district collection efforts and found that improvements were needed. For example, Department monitoring would be more effective if performance standards were established for various aspects of the collection efforts. Our analysis of the data relating to these efforts identified significant variances in the performance of different districts. If the Department used this kind of analysis to identify practices that were unusually effective, the practices could be implemented statewide. 94-S-89