News & Resources

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APA and Child Support Enforcement Working Together

BY: William Dunn, CPP | 02/04/20

An article written by APA, Moving from Cooperation to Collaboration, appears in the January 2020 issue of Child Support CommuniQue, published by the National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA). In it, APA explores the collaborative partnership it enjoys with state and federal child support enforcement agencies, especially as agencies seek to increase withholding from lump-sum payments like bonuses.

The federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) reports that, in 2018, nearly $30 billion in child support was collected. Employers collected 75% of that through wage withholding. OCSE also reported that $118 billion went uncollected in 2018. Reducing the amount of support that goes uncollected will require creative thinking, new legislation, and collaboration among all interested parties.

To help accomplish that goal, APA joined the Employer Lump-Sum Collaborative Workgroup, which is led by the National Council of Child Support Directors (NCCSD) and is comprised of OCSE, 24 state child support enforcement agencies (CSEAs), and APA.

The Workgroup set out to draft model state legislation to establish rules for withholding child support from lump-sum payments. After a year, the Workgroup completed its draft of model state legislation. The effort required compromise from CSEAs and APA members to develop processes and procedures that would increase collections without overburdening CSEAs and employers. In 2020, APA hopes to see the model act before state legislatures.

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William Dunn, CPP, is Director of Government Relations for the APA.