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New Approaches to Child Support Services: Custodial Parent Perspectives

  • Lisa Klein Vogel, Alexis M. Dennis, Liesl Hostetter, and Hilary Shager
  • July 2023
  • CSRA-22-24-T14

This report is the second of three deliverables associated with Task 14 of the 2022–2024 Child Support Policy Research Agreement (CSPRA): “Researching New Approaches to Child Support Services.” This task supports the goal of exploring the development of new strategies to address noncompliance with child support orders, including programmatic offerings for obligors having difficulty with work and paying the support they owe. As the child support program considers new approaches to serving obligors, the views of custodial parents owed child support—and particularly those who do not receive all the support due to them—provide important considerations for supporting the needs of all family members involved with child support.

To that end, the research team sought input from custodial parents in Wisconsin to better understand their views on how such programs might work to best meet family needs; appeals of, and concerns about, alternate approaches to child support services for obligors; and how child support agencies (CSAs) can support custodial parents and children when obligors fall behind. This report provides an overview of the team’s data collection efforts, summarizes key findings, and discusses potential implications for policy and practice. In addition to informing approaches for serving child support-involved families generally, the study’s findings are also relevant for the evaluation of Wisconsin’s Empowering Lives through Education, Vocational Assessment, Training, and Employment (ELEVATE) program. ELEVATE is an innovative pilot program funded via a Section 1115 waiver from the federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE). ELEVATE has been operating in five Wisconsin counties—Brown, Kenosha, Marathon, Racine, and Wood—since program enrollment began in January 2020.CSRA-22-24-T14-Report


Child Support, Child Support Policy Research, Enforcement, Orders & Payments


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