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You are here: Home > Child Support Services > Enforcement > Public Assistance

Public Assistance


**Note: A child support case is labeled a “public assistance case” when the child subject to that order has received, or is currently receiving cash assistance. A case can also be labeled public assistance if the court orders arrears, such as maternity expenses or past care, due the state for a period of time prior to the child Support Order.


  • If / when the Obligee goes on cash public assistance, he/she assigns their rights to receive child support over to the State. This means that while the Obligee is receiving cash assistance, the child support checks for those months will go to the State, not to the Obligee. The Obligee cannot receive both cash public assistance and child support.
  • Any current support not paid during the time the Obligee is on cash assistance accrues as arrears, and those arrears are due to the State for reimbursement of the cash assistance paid out.
  • When the Obligee starts receiving cash public assistance, any arrearage that was previously due him/her is now conditionally assigned to the State, meaning the State will collect and keep all funds received against that arrearage while the Obligee is on cash assistance.
  • Once the Obligee stops receiving cash assistance, the balance of those conditionally assigned arrears are now conditionally assigned to the Obligee and will be paid to him/her (unless paid by an IRS tax intercept - see below).
  • When an IRS tax refund is intercepted, that money will first pay any balance due the State on all cases, even if the Obligee is not receiving a cash grant at that time. Arrears that are conditionally assigned to the Obligee that are paid by an IRS tax intercept will be sent to the State. (See Tax Refund Intercept information sheet).