Every child living in NH has a legal right to financial support from both parents, even if the parents are divorced, separated or never married. The Division of Child Support Services helps families establish and enforce child support orders - both medical and financial. DCSS can also establish paternity with or without the help of the courts. DCSS provides the services listed below.
- Locates the parent responsible for providing child support.
- Establishes paternity (legal fatherhood) if necessary:
- Paternity may be established voluntarily with an Affidavit of Paternity (available from DCSS, the hospital where the child was born, or the town clerk's office).
- DCSS also arranges genetic testing to establish paternity.
- Maintains NH Putative Father Registry - a repository of Claim of Paternity Affidavits.
- Establishes child support orders through NH courts. Orders include:
- Financial support based on the Child Support Guidelines established in NH Statutes.
- Medical support orders if available at a reasonable cost.
- RSA 458:C2 VI-a defines Reasonable Cost of Medical Support as 4% of gross income.
- Enforces legal orders:
- DCSS will also enforce orders through administrative actions such as withholding wages, taking tax returns, revoking licenses, reporting delinquent payors to Credit Bureaus, placing liens on assets, taking lottery winnings and preventing the issuance of passports.
- DCSS will also work with the courts to enforce orders when the responsible parent does not comply with a child support order.
- Disburses financial support collected on behalf of the children in a child support case.
- DCSS will mail collected child support payments owed to a family within two (2) business days of receipt.
- Maintains records of the payments received from the responsible parent and disbursed to the custodial parent.
- Works with other states to establish and enforce child support orders when the non-custodial parent (parent not living in the home) does not live in NH.
- Works with child support agencies in other states to perform the same services listed above through its specialized unit called the Interstate Child Support Unit.
- Reviews Child Support Orders to determine if the amount is appropriate for both parties. The exact services provided by DCSS may vary depending on the individual case. When enforcing an order, DCSS will determine the best actions to be taken.
$25 Annual Fee
An Annual Service Fee of $25.00 will be deducted from all cases in which a minimum of $500.00 has been collected and disbursed to the Child Support Payee. The fee will not be charged in cases where the Payee has received Public Assistance (TANF/AFDC) (on behalf of the dependents) at any time. If a Payee has multiple cases, the fee will be charged in each case where a minimum of $500.00 has been collected and disbursed. The Payor will be credited for the full amount of the fee.
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