As part of a national celebration of Child Support Awareness month in August, the Los Angeles County Child Support Services Department will be reaching out to the public via activities that highlight the importance of child support services. CSSD services said its officials are in place to help families and children by establishing parentage, obtaining child and medical support orders and enforcing child support obligations. For Child Support Awareness Month and beyond, said county officials, anyone interested can contact the CSSD to get answers to questions like how a case is opened and how payment amounts are determined.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors will help kick off CSAM 2017 on Tuesday, August 1, by presenting a resolution to CSSD Director Dr. Steven J. Golightly and the CSSD staff, commending the Department for its work supporting the families and children in L.A. County.
“Our services are critical to the well- being of thousands of families and children in our County,” said Golightly. “We look forward to August as a special opportunity to share information and interact in new ways with the general public, the parents we serve, and our community and government partners.”
Recently, the Sentinel was able to catch up with attorney Alex Bauer, who answered some common questions about child support cases. For example, how a case is opened, she explained, is either one parent beginning to receive government assistance or if parents are divorcing or separating and ask for a case to be opened. She also explained how domestic issues like custody and expenses affect child support cases.
“The way that child support is calculated is a computer program called the guideline calculator, which has a variety of factors that determine how much is paid,” Baur explained.
“Visitation or custody is one of those factors. Generally, the more visitation a parent has with a child the less that parent would have to pay in support. If the child is in a parent’s custody, they are spending money on that child, and of course they would have less money available to pay for support…”
Furthermore, she said, certain expenses will affect child support orders. Uncontrollable ones like mandatory union dues or health insurance can generate payment adjustments, while things like car payments will not.
Throughout August, CSSD will be collaborating with many well-known organizations and agencies including the L.A. County Department of Parks and Recreation, Los Angeles County Office of Education, America’s Job Center of California, Pomona Unified School District, HealthRight 360, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Mothers in Action, San Gabriel Valley Chapter of the American Payroll Association, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Pomona Valley Reentry Resource Fair and the Whittier Community Resource Center, said department officials.
“A highlight of the outreach will be the always well-attended, annual child support workshop for community organizations and government agencies, who like CSSD, provide important services to families and children,” they said.
The workshop will be held on August 31st at the Liberty Community Plaza in Whittier from 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
Recently, CSSD was recognized for providing outstanding customer service to families and children when it was given the statewide Outstanding Program Award from the California Child Support Directors Association.