What amount is Supportkids trying to collect?
Supportkids is trying to collect the amount that is due to you at the time we receive the first payment on your behalf. This may be referenced as the "Specified Amount" or "Contract Amount". Supportkids will determine this amount by charging the non-custodial parent the judgment amount, if any, plus monthly child support accruals, if appropriate. Supportkids will typically include any interest to which you may be entitled. Then we give the non-custodial parent credit for any payments made. The difference between the charges accrued and the payments made at the time of our first collection is the amount we are trying to collect.
How often does Supportkids work my case?
The frequency with which each case is worked is as unique as the individual case. At different stages of the collection process the time frame of when your case is worked can change. Generally, when a case is with an Enforcement Specialist, your case is worked every 3-4 weeks.
How long will Supportkids pursue child support for me?
Unfortunately, Supportkids is not able to collect on every case. The details and success rates vary from case to case.
What collection tools are available?
Supportkids uses voluntary and involuntary methods to resolve the child support obligation. The tools available to us include:
- Verbal and written communication which can lead to voluntarily payments
- Settlement negotiations
- Wage withholdings
Please note that the experts at Supportkids will determine what actions are appropriate and in the best interest of your case.
What if the non-custodial parent files for bankruptcy?
While child support is not dischargeable in bankruptcy, bankruptcy law and its procedural rules temporarily shield the non-custodial parent from any collection action. Our efforts are placed on hold until one of the following occurs: (1) the bankruptcy case is closed; (2) the bankruptcy case is dismissed; (3) the debtor is discharged; or (4) a court order terminates or modifies the stay. Please notify us if bankruptcy becomes an issue. We will keep your case open, and monitor the progress of the bankruptcy. It is important to understand that bankruptcy cases can take months, sometimes years to resolve.
What do I do if the government sends me a hearing notice for my child support case?
Please forward any hearing notice you receive to our Client Relations Unit. Our Legal Department will review the notice to determine how the hearing impacts the Supportkids' case. In most cases, Supportkids will not attend hearings called by an entity other than Supportkids. Any time you attend a hearing, please advise Supportkids as to the outcome so that we will be aware of any changes to the court order for child support.
How will my child support be impacted if my current husband adopts my child?
Once your child is adopted, the biological parent is no longer responsible for paying "current" child support. However, in most cases the arrearages that accrued prior to the adoption are still owed.
Can Supportkids intercept an IRS tax return from the non-custodial parent?
As a private company Supportkids does not have the authority to intercept the non-custodial parent's income tax return. Any payment we receive that is identified as an IRS intercept will be passed directly to you with no fees deducted. Your local government office should update their records annually and include tax refund interceptions as an enforcement option.
Will you forward correspondence from me or my children to the non-custodial parent?
Yes, we will forward letters and pictures to the non-custodial parent at your request. All correspondence is reviewed in advance for appropriateness. Our policy is the same for communication from the non-custodial parent to you or your children.
How do I update my name change through Supportkids?
Send your request in writing and include a copy of valid identification such as driver's license, social security card, or marriage certificate. Make sure to include your Client ID Number.
How will my checks from a non-custodial parent, not affiliated with Supportkids, be impacted by your involvement?
There is a chance that your payments from another non-custodial parent will be forwarded to Supportkids. Our contact information is provided to state offices after your case has been accepted and often times they update every record associated with your name. When checks from the secondary non-custodial parent arrive, we will forward them to you without a fee deduction. Unfortunately, this will cause a delay in receipt of your payment. There is not an alternative to this step.
Am I eligible to apply for Supportkids services?
In order for Supportkids to review your case:
- You must not be currently receiving cash assistance from the state, such as welfare or TANF.
- You must have a signed court order that establishes child support. This can be a divorce decree, order establishing parent-child relationship, paternity order, judgment or other court document in which child support is ordered.
- You must be owed at least $5000 in child support.
Once we receive your application, we will review it to determine if this is a good option for you. Remember to fill out your application as thoroughly as possible.
How do I apply for your services?
Getting started is easy. Our online application is available 24-hours a day online or if you prefer to discuss your child support situation, you can call us at 1-800-691-KIDS (5437). Our Client Specialists are available to speak with you Monday through Friday from 9 am to 2 pm CT and on Wednesday night 5 pm to 7 pm CT.
How can I get a copy of my court order?
You can obtain a copy of your child support order from the courthouse in the county where your order was established. A copy of the order is normally located at either the District or County Clerk's office. You may also be able to obtain a copy of your order(s) from the child support agency in which you have or had an open case.
I am not sure if I have enough information about the non-custodial parent. Can I still apply for your services?
The more information we have about the non-custodial parent, the better. Please include everything you have about him/her when you complete your application. Your case will be reviewed, and based on the information that you provide, we will make an assessment about whether we think we can be successful for you. We know that you may not have every detail about the non-custodial parent, or that the information you do have may be outdated. We will use what you provide as a starting point and will work to fill in any information gaps.
I receive payments sporadically. Is Supportkids a good option for me?
Depending on the reliability of the payments you receive, Supportkids may or may not be a good option for you at this time. Once we begin our collection efforts, all payments received will be subject to our contingency fee. It is possible that we will collect more than you are receiving now, and that we will establish more consistent payments. However, since we are unable to guarantee collection, we do not want to disrupt the payments you are already receiving, if they are coming reliably. We encourage you to call and speak with a Supportkids representative to determine whether Supportkids is a good option for you at this time.
What if the non-custodial parent is in jail?
Our goal is to bring money into your household. If the non-custodial parent is incarcerated, it is very difficult to collect and therefore, Supportkids will not be able to assist. However, when you find out that he/she is out of jail, please call Supportkids as we may be able to help you at that time.
What if I need help collecting child support from more than one non-custodial parent?
If you have more than one non-custodial parent who owes you child support, Supportkids may be able to help. An application for each non-custodial parent should be completed and each case will be reviewed independently for eligibility.
What does it mean when my case is accepted? What can I do to help my case get accepted?
A case is accepted when all of your information, including your court order for child support, is reviewed and we determine that Supportkids is a good option for your case.
Please fill out the application as thoroughly as you can. The more information we have about the non custodial parent, the better. Provide all court orders pertaining to your case. It is important for us to work together to ensure that a complete application and the necessary documents, such as a court order, are returned to Supportkids. Upon receipt, we will give your case a thorough assessment to determine whether we think we will be able to help.
If my case is accepted, how long will it take to get my first check?
Each case is different, and collection is never guaranteed. However, you can rest assured that Supportkids will work diligently and as quickly as possible on your case.
Do I need to close my case with the state?
In most jurisdictions we work cooperatively with government agencies, and we do not encourage our parents to close their existing cases with the state. Sometimes the work we do prompts action by the state. If our work is involved, our fees are deducted from the payments you receive.
How much does it cost to use Supportkids' services?
Supportkids has a contingency fee structure, which means you will never have any out-of-pocket fees. Our fees are retained from child support payments that we collect for you. If for some reason we are not successful, you don't pay anything to us. Find out the fees applicable in your case.
What do I get for the fees Supportkids retains?
Our services include expert case evaluation, highly skilled locate and enforcement services, negotiations with the non-custodial parent, working with state agencies, processing your payments, and continuous monitoring and renewed enforcement of your case if it is ever needed. Remember that you will never be charged any out-of-pocket fees.
How do you retain fees from my child support payments you collect?
Part of our application process includes a limited power of attorney form for you to sign. This gives us permission to change the address of record for you at the state registry to our address. If payments go through the registry, they are forwarded on to us; we deduct our fee and then send a payment to you. If a payment is mailed directly to you, forward the payment to us so that the payment can be processed appropriately.
Why should I sign up for direct deposit?
Direct deposit is a convenient way to receive your child support payments. The funds are automatically deposited into your account. No need to pay check cashing charges or make a trip to the bank!
How do I sign up for direct deposit?
You must have a US bank account to participate. Contact our Client Relations Unit and request a direct deposit authorization form. A customized authorization form will be forwarded to you. Complete and sign the form and return it with a voided check. If you do not have checks, your bank can provide you with a direct deposit routing form with your bank's routing and account numbers. A voided deposit slip will not be accepted. This entire process takes approximately 10-15 business days from the date we receive your completed paperwork.
How do I know how much money was deposited into my account?
Supportkids is able to update you on the amount of child support that we collected and the amount that was deposited into your account. You will receive an email once a payment has been processed on your case. You can also obtain this information by logging on to your Supportkids web account or by contacting our Client Relations Unit
When should my funds be in my bank account once you receive my child support payment?
The funds should be in your bank account within 7 business days after we receive your child support payment.
What if I want to change my bank account information for direct deposit?
Please contact us right away if your bank account is no longer valid. We will cancel your direct deposit information, and it will be necessary for you to complete a new form and submit it with a voided check. If funds are received before the new account is processed, your child support payments will be loaded onto a TotalPay Card.
What if I do not want to receive my child support payments through direct deposit any longer?
Contact our office right away if you want to cancel direct deposit. If funds are received after your direct deposit is cancelled, the child support payments will be loaded to a TotalPay Card.
What is a TotalPay Card?
A TotalPay Card is a Visa Debit card for your child support payments. TotalPay Cards are accepted at millions of locations nationwide that accept Visa debit cards! Your child support payments will be loaded onto a TotalPay Card and will be immediately ready for use.
What are the benefits of a TotalPay Card?
TotalPay Card is a convenient way to receive your child support payments. No need to pay check cashing charges or make a trip to the bank!
How can I receive my funds through a TotalPay Card?
If you are not signed up for direct deposit, Supportkids will automatically register you for a TotalPay Card after you receive your first physical check from Supportkids. Do not throw the card away. You must call to activate.
What is a Money Network Check?
No cash on hand? With Money Network Checks, you can write a check to yourself to access 100% of your exact child support payment and cash it for free at several locations including all Wal-Mart stores. You can also use the Money Network Checks like money orders to pay bills.
Can Supportkids tell me my balance on my TotalPay Card?
Supportkids will not have access to your TotalPay Card balance or details of usage. Please contact:
How do I find out how much money Supportkids has loaded to my TotalPay Card?
Supportkids is able to update you on the amount of child support that we collected and the amount that was loaded onto your TotalPay Card. You can obtain this information by logging onto your Supportkids Web account or by contacting our Client Relations Unit.
Why are there "pending charges" on my TotalPay Card and how does this impact my balance?
Certain merchants will put a hold or "pending charge" on your card to ensure funds. Examples of these merchants could include gas stations, hotels and car rental companies. This will impact the balance of funds that is available for use.
How can I obtain funds from my TotalPay Card without being charged a fee?
If you use the TotalPay Card as a signature point of sale, meaning the PIN is not used, there is no charge. You are allowed one free ATM transaction per month. You can write a Money Network check to yourself and assess 100% of your funds by cashing the check for free at several locations including all Wal-Mart stores.
What if I prefer to receive my funds via direct deposit instead of a TotalPay Card?
If you prefer to have your child support payments deposited into your bank account, contact our Client Relations Unit , and you can request a direct deposit authorization form. A customized authorization form will be forwarded to you. Complete and sign the form and return it with a voided check. If you do not have checks, your bank can provide you with a direct deposit routing form with your bank's routing and account numbers. A voided deposit slip will not be accepted. Your funds will continue to go onto your TotalPay Card until this process is completed which can take 10-15 business days from the date we receive your completed paperwork.
Can you guarantee collection for me?
Unfortunately, even Supportkids cannot collect in every case. However, with over a decade of experience, Supportkids is well equipped to pursue any number of collection options and will work tirelessly on your behalf. The best part is that Supportkids works on a contingency basis, so we only earn our fees when collection begins. Learn more about our fees.
Does Supportkids have the child support experience my case needs?
Everyone who works at Supportkids feels pride in our mission. Whether we worked at the state prior to Supportkids, have a personal experience with child support or simply wish to work for an organization that helps people, we are all here for a reason. In our management staff alone, we have over 100 combined years of direct experience in the child support arena. The tenure and experience of our staff, from top-to-bottom, qualifies us as the child support experts!
How will Supportkids respect my privacy?
How long will Supportkids collect for me?
Once we collect the first payment, we will determine how much is owed to you at that time, including all interest to which you may be entitled. The amount calculated is called the "Specified Amount" and we will work to collect that entire amount. Once it is collected, our Fullsupport clients are enrolled in our Supportwatch program. Supportwatch is an optional service that allows you to continue with Supportkids for a reduced fee.
How is Supportkids different from the state?
State agencies have many processes in place for child support collection. However, since so many of them are automated, some cases fall through the cracks. In addition, since they are responsible for more than just child support enforcement, the staff at the state agencies often have caseloads that hamper their ability to give each one the individual attention it needs.
Our Enforcement Specialists work each case they are assigned personally, so if there is a break in payment, they know it and can react quickly. In addition, rather than just sending letters that can easily be ignored by the non-custodial parent, we are also going to pick up the phone and attempt to make contact. Direct negotiation is a powerful tool, and one that many state agencies simply do not have the resources to use.
Why is Supportkids so successful?
Our focus is child support collections. Our clients have signed court orders for child support. Our highly trained and experienced Enforcement Specialists and professionals have manageable caseloads. We have state-of-the-art information systems. Our team gets to work quickly and effectively for you.