Pennsylvania Marks Child Support Enforcement Awareness Month

01 Aug, 2012, 12:10 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare

HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania observes August as Child Support Enforcement Awareness month as its Child Support program continues to exceed federal standards designed to make sure children get the child support they deserve Secretary Gary D. Alexander announced today.

"Once again Pennsylvania is the only state in the nation to meet or exceed all the federal thresholds created to help children receive the financial support they are entitled to," Alexander said. "And Pennsylvania continues to serve those children with an eye on efficiency, recording one of the lowest administrative costs for child support collections in the country."

Governor Tom Corbett highlighted this continued and exemplary success in a proclamation that officially marks August as Child Support Enforcement Awareness Month.

The Department of Public Welfare's Bureau of Child Support Enforcement administers Pennsylvania's child support collection and enforcement efforts through cooperative agreements with the 67 county Courts of Common Pleas' Domestic Relations Sections.  Under federal rules, five measures must be adequately met:

  • Determining the paternity of the child;
  • Establishing child support orders through the local courts;
  • Collecting current monthly child support;
  • Collecting overdue child support; and
  • Being cost-effective in the administration of child support collection.

For every dollar Pennsylvania spends for child support collections, it collects $5.80, surpassing the national average of $5.10.The average amount of child support collected per case, $3,233, also exceeds the national average by $1,477.

Pennsylvania disbursed $1.55 billion in child support collections to custodial parents in 2010-11.

"The committed efforts of our county court workers and welfare department employees to get child support to custodial parents ensure thousands of children can live in a more secure environment," Alexander said. "Research also shows parents involved financially with their children are more involved in a child's overall life."

For more information about the Department of Public Welfare and the child support program, visit the department's website at Pennsylvanians who suspect welfare fraud should call 1-800-932-0582.

Media contact: Carey Miller and Donna Kirker Morgan, 717-425-7606

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare