Question: Can I make a payment today? I just got divorced and don’t want to fall behind in my support.
Answer: Yes, on new divorces or dissolutions, the CSEA will accept payments made by the Obligor, and forward them to the Obligee. The CSEA cannot issue a wage withholding to an employer until the written Judgment Entry is signed by the Judge and received by the CSEA. You may want to be in touch with your Attorney as to the status of the entry.
Question: What exactly is SETS?
Answer: SETS stands for Support Enforcement Tracking System which is the State of Ohio’s child support computer system. SETS was designed to create a uniform, statewide system that follows state Child Support statutes. Through SETS all Ohio counties can communicate with each other and share information.
Question: When does the CSEA collect processing fees?
Answer: All child support orders include a 2% processing fee; however, the CSEA only retains these fees when all current support owed to the Obligee is paid in full for the month. So if the Obligor is paying $221.00 per month ($216.67 for current support and $4.33 processing fee) and is paid weekly from his employer, the total weekly amount ($51.00) will be sent to the Obligee until the current support for the month is completely paid. Once the Obligor’s balance to the Obligee reaches $0 for the month, the CSEA will collect current processing fees. So it may be possible that your child support payment received may be less than expected from time to time.
Question: What happens if I (the Obligor) don’t work enough hours to meet my support obligation for the week?
Answer: Should the Obligor experience a reduction of pay during a payroll period, the Obligor has the protection of the Consumer Protection Act. The maximum amount that the employer should withhold from the wage is: if the Obligor is supporting a spouse or other dependent children, 50% of the disposable income (net amount after required taxes) is the maximum. If the Obligor is not supporting someone else, then 60% of the disposable income is the maximum. If the Obligor is behind in support by 12 weeks or more, an additional 5% is added to either of the above. If there are any questions regarding this, the Obligor or employer should contact the CSEA.
Question: I am a single Mom and the father of my child is reluctant to acknowledge he is the father stating he wants to be sure first. What can I do?
Answer: You can make application for child support services to your local CSEA and genetic testing will be administratively ordered. There is no cost to you for this highly accurate test. If the results come back that he is found to be the legal father, the CSEA may then proceed to obtain a support order if you desire. If this administrative process is not successful, a Complaint can be filed with the Court to achieve compliance.
Question: Before I was divorced I had a temporary order for support, now that I have received a divorce and have a final support order, what happens to the arrears on my temporary order?
Answer: Unless specifically addressed in your final divorce decree or dissolution, the arrears on a temporary order are removed from your case. The effective date of your support order then becomes that of the final divorce decree or dissolution.
Question: What changes do I need to report to the CSEA?
Answer: Both the Obligor and Obligee are required to report in writing any changes in address to the CSEA. The Obligor must also report any changes in employment status in writing. It is extremely important to be able to communicate between you and the CSEA concerning your child support order. A lack of ability to communicate with the CSEA is a leading cause for contempt actions to be filed with the Court.
Question: I just received an ‘Addendum Withholding Notice to Parties of a Support Order’ in the mail. What is this and do I need to do anything?
Answer: Each time a new wage withholding is mailed to an Obligor’s employer, the CSEA is required to send both the Obligor and Obligee this Addendum. If you have any changes that need to be reported to the agency, please complete the form and return it to the CSEA.
Question: Will the CSEA enforce spousal support (previously referred to as alimony) only cases?
Answer: No. The CSEA enforces child support orders only. The Agency will administer a spousal support order, i.e., send income withholdings and collect and disburse the money, but is not permitted to enforce a spousal only support order.
Question: How long will it take to get a payment after a new income withholding is sent to the Obligor’s employer?
Answer: It is difficult to determine exactly when the first payment will be received from the employer. Reasons for this include the length of time the order is in the mail as it goes to the employer, the employer's payroll cycle, and the amount of time it takes for the deducted amount to reach Ohio Child Support Payment Central (CSPC). Under normal circumstances, it will take between two and four weeks for the employer to begin to send the first payment to CSPC.
Question: I usually get my check on Wednesday and now it is Friday, and I haven’t gotten it yet. Where’s my check?
Answer: In order to protect the privacy of the Obligee and Obligor, the CSEA will not give out financial information over the telephone; however, you can call the state’s Interactive Voice Response system (IVR) at 800-860-2555 to receive account balances and the date of the last payment made. The date a payment is processed will fluctuate from week to week depending on when the monies are received by CSPC; delays may include: mail service delays, holidays, vacations, etc. CSPC processes checks within 2 business days of receipt if the payment is easily identified.
Question: When I call the IVR I’m asked for a PIN number. I don’t have one; how can I get a PIN?
Answer: PIN resets can only be completed through a faxed or mailed written request. Send your written request to: ODJFS, Office of Child Support, PIN Reset Center, 30 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43215-5903. You can also fax your request to the PIN Reset Center at 614-995-7159 or 614-728-5070. The request must be signed, dated and accompanied by a copy of both a photo ID and official documentation of the requestor’s social security number. A copy of your driver’s license can be used if it contains both items. PIN resets will occur within two business days.
Question: How does the CSEA collect on past due support?
Answer: There are several enforcement tools that are used to collect on past due support. Once an Obligor goes into default (over one month behind in their support obligation), a notice is sent to them to establish an arrearage payment of 20% of the current support obligation. The CSEA will also intercept tax refunds and lump sum bonuses. Other options may include placing liens on personal and real properties and withhold monies from a financial institution.
Question: What happens to my support checks if I receive a cash public assistance grant from ODJFS?
Answer: If you (the Obligee) are a recipient of a cash public assistance grant, you have assigned your right to current and back support to the State of Ohio (other States will have a similar requirement). All support received will be sent to the State of Ohio (or other requesting State) for the duration of the time you receive the cash grant. Once you no longer receive a cash grant, the Distribution Formula will determine how much of the back support is yours and how much has been assigned to the State for past assistance. All support received after you stop receiving a cash grant will go to you until your account is made current. After that, you will receive the current support amount and any arrearage payment will be paid to the State until that amount is paid in full.