How do I get child support services for my child in Georgia?
Here’s the basics of what you need to do to start receiving Child Support in Georgia:
- Open a Child Support Case
Call the Georgia Child Support Agency (1-877-423-4746) and make an appointment to open a case. You will also need to fill out at application. You can do that online, or request an application be mailed to you when you call for your appointment. They do charge you a small fee for applying to open a case. *If you are on some types of government assistance, you may not need to fill out an application to open a case. Ask about this when you make your appointment.
- Locate the Non-Custodial Parent
If you know where the non-custodial parent lives and/or works this step is simple. However, if you don’t know where the non-custodial parent is; or if he lives in a different state, it could be difficult to locate them. Information such as date of birth, social security number will make it easier to locate a non-custodial parent. Unfortunately there are no guarantees, and you can’t collect child support from an ‘un-findable’ parent.
- Establish Paternity
If you and the non-custodial parent were not married when you had your child, you will need to establish that he is the legal father of the child. If the non-custodial parent is uncooperative, you can petition the court to have his DNA tested to determine paternity.
- File a Support Order
In Georgia the child support guidelines take into consideration the income of both parents and the number of children. They also take into consideration which parent provides health insurance for the child. The court sometimes orders the non-custodial parent to pay for health insurance for the child if they can get it at a reasonable cost.
- Set up Payment
Once the child support order is in place, the amount will be deducted from the non-custodial parent’s paycheck. This is the easiest way for the non-custodial parent to pay child support. It’s automatic and there is a record of the payments. It is almost always a bad idea to make (or receive) child support payments directly between the parents.
What can I do if the non-custodial parent stops paying support or providing health insurance for our child?
If you have an Oder in place and the non-custodial parent does not obey the Order, Georgia Child Support Enforcement can assist you in getting your support through the courts. There are things that the court can do to get the non-custodial parent into compliance including fines and/or jail time for non-compliance. The Judge can enforce the order through a number of ways. To find out what other steps the courts can take visit Georgia’s Child Support agency directly.
Once the Child Support Order is in place, can it be changed?
After a Child Support Order has been set up, either parent can ask the Georgia Child Support Agency to review the Order every three years. You can ask them to review it sooner if there have been major changes in income or family situation.
Links Regarding Georgia Child Support
- Georgia Child Support Calculator – This site has worksheets and a calculator to help you figure out GA Child Support.
- A Simplified Georgia Child Support Calculator can be found at this site.
- Georgia Child Support Portal – has links and information regarding GA Child Support
- Child Support Office Location finder to Find the GA Child Support office near you.