Custodial Party

The custodial party in a child support case is the person who is responsible for the day-to-day care of the children and has physical custody of them. The custodial party can be a parent, legal guardian, or caretaker. 

Custodial parties who have an open enforcement case with OCSE are responsible for:

  • Responding to all requests for information, appearing for interviews and court hearings, and submitting your child to paternity testing, if necessary.  
  • Giving OCSE any information that they can about the noncustodial parent. 
  • Notifying the local child support office of any changes in their status, such as name, address, custody of child, and the desire for continued services.  
  • Cooperating with OCSE. The failure of TEA or Medicaid recipients to cooperate could result in a loss of benefits.  
  • Staying involved in the case. A team effort produces the best results. 

Things to Know

  • Have your case number ready when you call. If you don't know your case number, we'll have to ask you questions to determine your identity.  
  • OCSE does not represent the custodial party – OCSE represents the State's interest in seeing that the children are financially cared for.  
  • Understand the consequences of signing a legal document before you sign. Once a legal document is signed and filed, it is very difficult (sometimes impossible) to change, and it is almost always costly. 
  • If you do not cooperate with OCSE (for example, provide information or respond when requested), OCSE may close your case.  
  • If you choose to hire an attorney, OCSE will only discuss your case with your attorney. Once you no longer employ an attorney, we will resume discussing your case with you. 
  • If you want to know if a payment was made to you and when, you can log into your OCSE MyCase account, or call the automated 24-hour line: 800-264-2445.