Conducts case assessments/management and investigations and conducts interviews with custodial and/or non-custodial parents and others to elicit factual information, determines support obligations; assists in preparing cases for court hearings.
This is the journey level within the Child Support Specialist series. The incumbents perform the full range of activities to enforce child support laws. Incumbents in this class are expected to be fully proficient in the specific laws, policies, civil and criminal procedures and processes required to establish and enforce child support cases. Work is performed in accordance with established policies and procedures but also requires the ability to use independent judgment and discretion. This class is distinguished from Senior Child Support Specialist in that incumbents in the latter class work closely with the assigned attorney in preparing for the establishment of cases and enforcement of court orders, appearing in court and resolving issues prior to court.
Supervision Received and Exercised
Receives general supervision.
May provide technical guidance over lower level or newly hired staff.
Examples of Duties
Interviews custodial and non-custodial parents, witnesses, family members, representatives from law enforcement agencies, and attorneys to obtain statements and gather information for locating absent parents; conducts financial resource background investigations on the non-custodial parents’ assets to determining ability to pay support, including location and review of current and past employers and of information obtained form agencies; ensures that forms and applications for support payments are complete and accurate; explains general legal requirements and the calculation of support payments to non-custodial parents and other involved parties.
Contacts non-custodial parents in writing or by telephone to advise them of their support obligations; obtains financial declarations and to prepare stipulation of monthly support obligations consistent with parents’ personal incomes; establishes the amount of support payment based on financial status and allowable deductions of the custodial and non-custodial parents.
Interviews parties to secure support agreements and to persuade responsible parties to make payments without recourse to legal action.
Elicits information from custodial parents in order to establish paternity; reviews lab reports to monitor paternity testing status and follows up as necessary.
Informs the appropriate County Health and Social Services Department of non-cooperative custodial parents; prepares cases for civil or criminal prosecution within the standards set forth by statute and case law; protects the constitutional rights of the non-custodial parent and the rights of the custodial party and child; testifies in court and assists attorneys with case preparation including assisting in court.
Reviews application documents for completeness and accuracy, requesting additional information and documents as necessary; evaluates information for compliance with regulations so that initial eligibility for public assistance can be determined; provides clients with information relative to policies, procedures and legal rights.
Applies federal, state and local laws, ordinances, rules and procedures in order to secure current and delinquent support payments; establishes paternity, child support, and medical coverage through legal action; conducts individual case assessments/management; provides customer services to a variety of parties and agencies; conducts investigations to obtain factual information; generates legal documents and performs mathematical calculations to determine current and past due support obligations.
Makes verbal or written inquiries of various agencies and businesses in order to locate the whereabouts of parents; uses various sources, including family, friends and information systems to gather and validate location information on parties, including children.
Monitors support payment records to ensure that the responsible party is in compliance with court orders, laws and mandates; implements proper practices and procedures when default occurs including the preparation of civil actions under direction of a Child Support Attorney; initiates delinquent notices to the obligor/employer when necessary in order to secure continued support payments; prepares a variety of legal documents; serves legal documents where appropriate.
Initiates fraud referrals when circumstances indicating an act of welfare fraud are discovered; determines affect fraud investigation has on support case and gives instructions to adjust accounts based on investigation results.
Maintains professional knowledge in applicable areas and keeps abreast of changes in job-related rules, statutes, laws and mandates; makes recommendations for the implementation of changes; reads and interprets professional literature; attends training programs, workshops and seminars.
Answers questions regarding cases of both a general and specific nature; refers parties to appropriate individuals or agencies for assistance as needed; makes referrals to employment programs to assist the non custodial parents in finding employment.
Completes necessary accounting instructions to initiate support accounting processes; initiates accounting instructions to change support payments in accordance with modification of court orders; prepares and maintains forms, applications, case files, and other necessary records; generates legal documents related to child support, paternity, and medical support orders; serves court documents. Closes case files after thorough review and analysis reveals closure is appropriate per State mandates.
Determines next appropriate action in each case; reviews case files for accuracy.
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
Civil and criminal law, procedures and regulations, which pertain to the enforcement of support cases.
Methods and techniques used in interviewing individuals to discover information pertinent to the establishment of responsibility for child support payments, location and financial status of the responsible party.
The use of various sources to research assets and obligations, including other agencies’ database systems.
Support collection procedures and methods of collecting and adjusting delinquent accounts.
Legal terminology and legal forms, and documents used to enforce support.
Methods and techniques used to effectively locate absent parents, children and related persons.
Financial record keeping procedures.
Modern office practices and procedures.
Caseload management skills.
Operate office equipment including a personal computer, copy and fax machines and printers.
Drive a motor vehicle. Ability to:
Apply federal, state or local laws, ordinances, codes, procedures and rules in order to secure current and delinquent support payments and establishment of paternity.
Establish and maintain effective working relationships.
Comply with court mandated due process standards.
Communicate with and explain technical information to individuals from a wide variety of educational and cultural backgrounds; learn to effectively interview individuals in order to secure information required to effectuate the collection of support payments; exercise tact, diplomacy, and flexibility.
Research and extract factual information; prepare complete and concise oral and written reports.
Initiate and facilitate the collection of support payments.
Testify in court.
Effectively locate individuals, assets and court orders for support.
Make logical determinations from financial statements on the amount of support payments.
Monitor support payment records and accounts to ensure compliance with court orders.
Evaluate case records and, if default occurs, prepare cases for civil or criminal action, if warranted; prepare administrative legal documents.
Prepare correspondence and convey facts and information.
Deal with stressful situations and potentially hostile people.
Operate electronic information systems equipment.
Education and Experience
One year of experience as a Child Support Specialist (Entry) in Solano County or similar class in another government agency administration.
Completion of 15 semester or 22.5 quarter units, from an accredited college or university preferably in Sociology, Social Work, Business, Public Administration, Liberal Arts, Paralegal, Criminal Justice or other related courses.
Possession of a valid Class C California driver's license is required.
Independent travel may be required.
Positions allocated to this class may require bilingual skills. Candidates for positions in this class will be required to pass a background investigation in accordance with applicable law, regulation and/or policy
There is no supplemental information.
Physical Ability:Tasks involve the ability to exert light physical effort in sedentary to light work, but which may involve some lifting, carrying, pushing and/or pulling of objects and materials of light weight (5-10 pounds). Occasionally moving of weights up to 25 pounds may be required. Tasks may involve extended periods of time at a keyboard or workstation.
Sensory Requirements: Requires the ability to recognize and identify similarities and differences between shade, degree or value of colors, shapes, sounds, forms, textures or physical appearance associated with job-related objects, materials, tasks or people.
Environmental Factors: Requires the ability to work under conditions where exposure to environmental factors poses a risk of minor injury or illness.