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What are cooperation requirements for child support enforcement?

Child support enforcement in Illinois is generally considered to relate to those who are paying the support and are failing to do so. However, those who are receiving support also have to follow certain criteria as a foundation to the agreement. This is known as cooperation. For a custodial parent who is receiving various benefits including TANF, Family Assist, KidCare Moms and Babies, AABD Cash, AABD Medical and Parent/KidCare Assist, these requirements apply.

If a custodial parent is not receiving any of these benefits, he or she is not compelled to cooperate under the law. Likewise, if the case is only related to benefits for the parent and not the child, there is no cooperation requirement.

Cooperation means that the custodial parent must take part in certain tasks involving paternity and hid support. There are certain pieces of information and acts of participation that a custodial parent must provide and follow when it comes to cooperation.

Absent good cause, the custodial parent will be asked to take part in the following: establishing who the child's legal father is; giving a name and location of the noncustodial parent or the person who is allegedly the father; appearing to provide verbal information, written information or proof; giving testimony at administrative proceedings; providing a signature to attest that the information is true and correct; obtaining the support payments for the child, including medical support; and sending the Department of Public Aid (DPA) child support that was received after AABD Cash or TANF was approved.

Custodial parents must be cognizant of the requirements of the State of Illinois when it comes to their responsibilities under child support enforcement laws. Contacting an attorney who is well-versed in all aspects of child support can help parents who are unaware or unsure of their cooperation requirements and how they relate to the support agreement.

Source: Illinois Department of Human Services, "Child Support Enforcement -- Cooperation Requirements," accessed on April 4, 2016

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