Child Support Services Celebrates 40 Years of Service

OCSS Customer ServiceForty years ago, the name “Office of Child Support Enforcement” defined its basic mission to collect funds to support children.  Today, the name “Division of Child Support Services” (DCSS) more accurately reflects its focus on the well-being of children, including financial and medical assistance, and additional services for parents to help them support their children.

In 1973 the office was created when the Georgia General Assembly passed the Child Support Recovery Act. The law originally assigned the federal TANF recipients support rights to the state and established TANF payments as a debt to the State.  It also allowed the use of the administrative hearing process to collect funds.

In FY1973, the statewide staff was seven (7) people, the total caseload was 12,000 and collections totaled $38,000.  In FY2011, DCSS had a staff of 1,232, the total caseload was 404,300 and $708 million was distributed to families.

In 1976 the first local office opened in Milledgeville and the first regional office in Albany.  In 1986 Georgia was the first state child support program to have a pc-to-mainframe statewide system. In 2003 Georgia became the second state in the nation to replace child support checks with a debit card and direct deposit.

In 1997 the Fatherhood Program was piloted in the Dougherty Judicial Circuit, providing education, job training and other services so that the non-custodial parent could pay child support.  The program is now the largest state-operated program in the nation.

In 2012 Georgia’s DCSS Division received the Outstanding Child Support Program of the Year award from the National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA).

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The DCSS mission is to enhance the well-being of children by assuring that assistance in obtaining support, including financial and medical, is available to children.  The Office accomplishes this through locating parents, establishing paternity, establishing support obligations, and monitoring, enforcing and reviewing support obligations.

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