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For Immediate Release
January 14, 2010

Contact: Erika Monroe-Kane, Department of Children and Families, 608-266-9000

Child Support Change Provides Nearly $130 Million to Custodial Parents

A recent change in federal child support disbursement policy will ensure more money will be going to support the children of low-income, single parents. Under the new policy, parents receiving public assistance, who also had child support owed to them, can collect the entire past due amount of child support and receive public assistance benefits. This new approach also makes it possible for nearly $130 million in unpaid child support to be collected by custodial parents who either currently receive or previously received public assistance.

"Child support is an important source of income for single parents especially in these tough economic times," said DCF Secretary Reggie Bicha. "The receipt of previously owed child support will help parents gain financial stability and will play an important role in raising families out of poverty."

As part of the federal Deficit Reduction Act, this change is intended to increase child support payments and improve the lives of children because custodial parents will now receive more money to provide for their children and assist families in transitioning off public assistance. Non-custodial parents have the reassurance that they are contributing directly to their child's care and research shows that parents are more likely to pay child support when they know the money is directly supporting their children.

"Child support is paid to provide the essential economic support that helps children thrive," stated Bicha. "With this change, we are making sure children will benefit from 100% of that money."

For more information about this change, visit the DCF Child Support Assigned Support page.

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