To obtain an order for child support, first the parties must establish paternity of the children. Obtaining an order is a legal process and involves court action. Your caseworker is available to answer questions.
|Steps to Obtain an Order||What does it mean?|
|Summons and Complaint||The Summons and Complaint is a legal document prepared by Child Support starting the process to obtain an order. It starts the lawsuit and lists both parents and Child Support as parties to the legal action.|
|Service||The Summons and Complaint is delivered to the parties named in the document.|
|Proof of Service||It’s necessary to have “proof” that the parties received the Summons and Complaint so they are aware of the legal action. Certified mail is one way proof is obtained. It can also be done by arranging to pick up the documents from a Child Support office, having the sheriff deliver the documents, or, in rare cases, by publication in the newspaper.|
Gathering Financial and Health Insurance Information
*In split custody and equal physical custody cases, both parents must provide this information.
Completion of the Financial Declaration and Medical Support Affidavit is one of the ways Child Support gathers information from the parent who will be paying support. The forms should be completed thoroughly to assure the most accurate support amount is calculated.
Child Support may secure financial information by obtaining tax records and contacting employers as needed.
|Guidelines Calculation||The information provided in the Financial Declaration, Medical Support Affidavit, and any other information obtained is used to calculate the support amount. Calculations are based on the Child Support Guidelines.
Use the Calculator to estimate the support amount.
|Settlement Proposal||Documents provided to the parties explaining the outcome of the guidelines calculation.|
|Stipulation & Judgment||The stipulation is a legal document the parties can sign when they agree with the settlement proposal. The signed stipulation goes to the court. If the court approves the stipulation, it is signed by the judge or referee and becomes a judgment.|
|Hearing & Judgment||If either party disagrees with the settlement proposal, a court hearing will be scheduled. Both parties will be notified of the hearing date and time, and have the opportunity to participate in the hearing.|
|Default Judgment||If neither party responds or objects to the settlement proposal by the required date, the court will adopt the settlement proposal. It will be signed by the judge or referee and become a judgment.|