Child Support
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Terms and Definitions

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Child Support Terms and Definitions


Administrative Fees: Service fee assessed to cover the agency’s administrative costs. Formerly known as poundage.

Arrears: Past due, unpaid child support owed by the Obligor.

Child Support Audit: A paper record showing the actual balance of your Support Order. This is done by determining what should have been paid per all child support orders, and then comparing that with what was actually paid by the Obligor according to the records of the CSEA.

Caretaker: A person other than the biological parents who has assumed legal custody of the child(ren) through the court system.

Case Manager: Your case is assigned to an agency employee who handles the details on your case, including but not limited to income withholding, enforcement, and answering your questions.

Current Child Support: The amount of money, ordered by the court or administrative process, owed by the Obligor for the support of the child(ren). This is a monthly obligation.

CSEA: Child Support Enforcement Agency.

Custody order: A court issued legally binding document that establishes with whom the child(ren) shall reside.

Default: When a child support obligation has fallen behind in the payment schedule equal to one month’s current support obligation.

Emancipation: Termination of the current Support Order, usually due to the child reaching the age of majority (18) and graduating or withdrawing from high school, or 19 years of age, whichever is earlier.

Income Withholding: A wage garnishment sent by the CSEA to an income source of an Obligor. (See the Income Withholding information sheet.)

Non-Residential Parent: See Obligor, also known as Non-Custodial Parent/Payor.

Obligee: Any person to whom child support is owed. Also known as the PAYEE, RESIDENTIAL PARENT or CUSTODIAL PARENT.

Obligor: Any person ordered to pay child support. Also known as the PAYOR, NON-RESIDENTIAL PARENT, or NON-CUSTODIAL PARENT.

Order/Support Order: A document specifying any support obligations, including medical coverage. Also referred to as a JOURNAL ENTRY.

Paternity: Legal determination of fatherhood. May be done through genetic testing, voluntary acknowledgement, or through the courts. Paternity must be established before child or medical support can be ordered. CSEA can assist with Paternity for children up to the age of 23.

Residential Parent: See Obligee, also known as Custodial Parent/Payee

SETS: Support Enforcement Tracking System, used for tracking and recording case information. Every case is assigned a 10 digit number in the State of Ohio SETS system that starts with the number “7”.

Total Support Obligation: Total of the monthly child support obligations including payment on arrears and administration fees.