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Child Support Payments in D.C.

In the District of Columbia, the Child Support Services Division (CSSD) of the Attorney General's Office handles child support payments. Specifically, the Child Support Services Clearinghouse does the following:

  • Receives payments from the paying parent;
  • Processes payments;
  • Posts payments;
  • Disburses payments; and
  • Updates employer information.

Typically, the non-custodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent. The amount of the child support payment depends on various factors, including the income of both parents.

Child Support Payments in D.C. at a Glance

The best way to understand the law is to consult with an experienced attorney. However, it's also very useful to read a simple synopsis of the law written in plain language. See the chart below for concise information about child support payments in D.C.


District of Columbia Code Division II. Judiciary and Judicial Procedure

  • Section 16-916.01 (child support guideline)
  • Section 16-916.02 (child support guideline commission)
  • Section 16-916.03 (child support proceedings)

Coverage of Child Support Payments



Besides the everyday household costs of food, clothing, and basic living and housing expenses, other expenses that can be applicable to child support payments include the following:

  • Health insurance costs (premiums and deductibles);
  • Educational expenses; and
  • Child care expenses.

Paying Child Support

Timing of the Payments

The child support order determines when the payments begin.

Payment Methods

There are several ways for a parent to pay child support, including:

If the child support order calls for payments deducted from earnings, then the employer submits payment to the CSSD Clearinghouse.

Collecting Child Support Payments

To get child support in D.C., there must be a case established with the CSSD and then the case is properly managed with CSSD working with the custodial parent.

Finally, the non-custodial parent will make payments to the custodial parent. Parents can receive child support payments via regular mail or electronically.

Wage-Withholding Payments

If the payments are deducted from the paying parent's wages, then the parent's employer submits to the CSSD Clearinghouse; most payments received from the Clearinghouse come through the mail, which means that the CSSD can't guarantee consistent payment times because mail times vary.

Electronic Payments

The CSSD encourages parents to sign up for electronic payments. If you're a parent who wants to receive payments electronically, you must file for an application via email, fax, or regular mail.

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Child Support Payments in D.C.: Related Resources

If You Need Help with Child Support Payments in D.C., Contact a Lawyer

If you're experiencing problems either receiving or making child support payments in D.C., get a handle on your situation by contacting a legal professional. A skilled child support attorney can help you with any payment problems or other child support matters.

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