In fiscal year 2018, noncustodial parents were obligated to pay nearly $33.6 billion in current child support on behalf of the 15 million children served by the Title IV-D child support program. One-third of that, or $11 billion, was not collected. Unemployment is the leading reason for non-payment of child support by noncustodial parents. This brief will explore the opportunities at the state and federal levels to provide employment services to noncustodial parents and increase child support payments in the process.
This policy brief provides an overview of the Child Support system, the barriers Child Support creates for low-income families, and the policy changes needed for it to effectively meet the collective needs of very low-income fathers, mothers and children. Drawing upon Women In Fatherhood Inc.'s (WIFI's) qualitative research with women, research on fragile families, and interviews with female experts in the fatherhood field, we provide suggestions for changes to Child Support that will better ensure children are cared for and supported by both parents while encouraging father involvement and…
Low-skilled men, especially minorities, typically work at low levels and provide little support for their children. Conservatives blame this on government willingness to support families, which frees the fathers from responsibility, while liberals say that men are denied work by racial bias or the economy--either a lack of jobs or low wages, which depress the incentive to work. The evidence for all these theories is weak. Thus, changing program benefits or incentives is unlikely to solve the men's work problem. More promising is the idea of linking assistance with administrative requirements…
This paper analyzes legislative proposals that address marriage, and the potential impact on current fatherhood programs serving low-income families. The initiation of fatherhood programs following the passage of the Personal Responsibility Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act in 1996 is reviewed and current legislative proposals are described, including: the Child Support Distribution Act of 2001 and the Fathers Count Act of 1999, which combine child support reform measures with fatherhood provisions; the Strengthening Working Families Act, which contains child support distribution…
This document offers a brief examination of the key policy issues surrounding the EITC and marriage penalties. The EITC is designed to support low income working families with children. It provides a subsidy (up to $3,816 in 1999) for families with children and low earnings. Current research shows that the EITC has been successful in raising the income of such families, increasing rewards/incentives to work among many low skill workers, and in stimulating greater work effort by single parents. (Author abstract).