Congress established the Child Support Enforcement Program in 1975 under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act to collect child support. The program's goal is to ensure that all children are supported financially by both parents and to reduce the number of children receiving public assistance.
Structure of Child Support in Arkansas
The responsibility for implementation of the Child Support (IV-D) program is shared by federal and state agencies. The federal agency responsible for child support enforcement is the Office of Child Support Services which is located in the Department of Health and Human Services. It establishes standards for state programs. In Arkansas, the program is administered by the Department of Finance and Administration, Revenue Division, Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE).
OCSE is comprised of the following:
- Central Office, which provides necessary support services for field staff and to administer the program at state level
- Field Offices – 26 offices across the state providing direct services to customers
- Arkansas Child Support Clearinghouse, which is responsible for the collection and disbursement of payments in child support orders
Child Support Cases in Arkansas
In Arkansas, court orders which include provisions for child support and/or medical support for a child are not automatically forwarded to OCSE for enforcement. To establish or enforce a court order, custodial parties may apply for services from OCSE. Or customers may be referred for services because they are required to cooperate with OCSE as a condition of receiving services, such as Medicaid for themselves and their child, Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), or Transitional Employment Assistance (TEA).
Who Do We Work For?
It is a common assumption that OCSE represents the custodial party and is working in his or her behalf. OCSE does not represent the custodial party or the noncustodial parent. Our goal is to establish and enforce court orders so that children get the financial and medical support they need. We will take the action necessary to accomplish those goals.
About This Website
The goal of this website is to inform the reader regarding the services available through the child support program. Much of the information on this website may not apply if there is not an open enforcement case with Arkansas OCSE. For information about applying for services, go to Apply for Services.