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Glossary of Important Family Services Terms


ADMINISTRATIVE FEE- Service fee assessed to cover the cost of posting and disbursing payments.

ARREARS- Past due, unpaid child/spousal/medical support owed by the non-custodial parent

AUDIT- To compute 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 actually was paid by the non-custodial parent according to the records of the CSEA.

CARETAKER- A person other than the biological parents who has assumed legal/physical custody of the child (ren) though the court system.

CURRENT CHILD SUPPORT-    The amount of money, ordered by the court or administrative process, owed by the non-custodial parent for the support of the child (ren).  This is a monthly obligation.

CSEA/Child Support Enforcement Agency-   The county child support office.

CSPC- Child Support Payment Central- Ohio’s centralized collection and disbursement system.

CUSTODIAL PARENT- Any person to whom child support is owed. Also known as the Payee or Obligee.

CUSTODY ORDER-   Legal determination which establishes with whom a child shall live.

DEFAULT- When a child support obligation has fallen behind in payments equal to one month’s current support obligation.

DEFENDANT- A person required to make answer in a legal action or suit

ELECTRONIC DISBURSEMENT- It is an electronic funds transfer by means of direct deposit to a bank, savings and loan, or credit union account, or transfer to a magnetic strip card, such as a stored-value card.

EMANCIPATION-  Termination of the current support order, usually done due to the child reaching age of majority (18 years old) and graduating from high school, 18 and withdrawing from high school but no later than 19 years old.

EX PARTE ORDER- Judicial/administrative order issued without first having formal court hearings and without all parties being present. (usually involves a redirection of the support order to the new custodian)

ExpertPay- Enables employers and non-custodial parents to electronically submit child support payments through a bank account debit via the website ww.expertpay.com

FIDM- Financial Institution Data Match- An enforcement tool that freezes and seizes delinquent obligor’s bank accounts.

GARNISHMENT- A legal proceeding under which part of a person’s wages and/or assets are withheld for payment of a debt.

GENETIC TESTING- Analysis of inherited factors (DNA) of mother, child and alleged father which can prove or disprove a particular man as the father of a child.

GUIDELINES-   A standard method for setting child support obligations based on the income of both parents and other factors as determined by State Law.

INCOME WITHHOLDING- Federal and State legislation requiring employers to deduct court ordered sums from employee’s income and to transmit such monies to the CSPC for processing.  Orders for income withholding take precedence over all other forms of garnishment.  The Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA) limits the amounts that can be income withheld to a maximum of 65% when arrearages exist.  Two or more orders for withholdings must be prorated.

IV-D- pronounced 4D- a section of Federal law that authorizes enforcement remedies to collect support and provides federal funding for the local agency.

JOURNAL ENTRY- A legal document specifying any support obligation, including medical coverage.  Also known as an Order/Support Order/Judgment Entry.

MEDICAL OBLIGOR- Person ordered to carry medical insurance or pay cash medical support for their child (ren). 

MEDICAL SUPPORT-  a provision of a support order: to provide private health insurance coverage for the child subject to the support order that is reasonable in cost and presumed to be accessible, or to report available health insurance coverage; to provide cash medical support when private health insurance coverage is not available to either party or is not being provided by the health insurance obligor(s) in accordance with the order; for the shared responsibility of uncovered healthcare expenses; or that is issued by the court for payment of a specific dollar amount for medical expenses incurred on behalf of the individual subject to the support order.

MODIFICATION OF SUPPORT- Change of prior support orders based upon a substantial change in circumstances. For example, the income of one party substantially increases resulting in the recommended amount of support under the child support guidelines changing by more than 10%. This is deemed to be a substantial change warranting an increase in the support order.

MOTION TO DETERMINE ARREARS- A motion filed with the court in order to determine how much child support or spousal support arrears are owed on a case.

MOTION TO IMPOSE- Motion filed with the court seeking to impose jail time which has been suspended pending compliance with a court order. 

MOTION TO SHOW CAUSE-   A motion filed with the court when a person who has been ordered to pay support has failed to follow the court’s order.  Also known as a contempt action.

NON-CUSTODIAL PARENT-   Parent who does not have primary custody of a child but has a responsibility to financially support the child. Also known as the obligor or Payor.

OBLIGEE-   Person to whom child support is owed.  Also known as the Payee or Custodial Parent/Caretaker.

OBLIGOR-   Person ordered to pay support. Also known as the Non-Custodial parent or Payor.

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.

PLAINTIFF-   Person who brings an action against a defendant.

SETS/Support Enforcement Tracking System- Ohio’s statewide computer system used to monitor child support cases. 

TAX OFFSET- When the obligor’s tax refund (Federal and/or State) has been taken by the CSEA to pay on an arrearage balance.

UIFSA- Uniform Interstate Family Support Act- Law that governs how to process child support cases when one or both parties do not live in the state where the original order was established.




Stark County Commissioners Executive Director
Stark County Job & Family Services
221 3rd St SE
Canton, OH, US 44702
Stark JFS
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