Noncustodial parents (NCP) may apply for Child Support Services (CSS) to request establishment of paternity (if not previously established) or a possible modification of a child support order. CSS cannot establish a child support order without the Custodial Parent’s consent and assignment of rights.
To apply for CSS services contact the Child Support Call Center at 1-888-757-2445. You will need to complete a Support Questionnaire and provide other necessary documents, such as a copy of any existing order for support, for CSS to get started with your case.
What if I am not sure I am the father?
If you are unsure you are the father, you may request genetic testing. These tests are very accurate and will exclude (rule out) a man who is not the biological father. If a man is not excluded, CSS requires the laboratory to analyze the DNA until they can show that the probability of paternity is at least 99%.
Genetic tests use cells swabbed from inside the mouth, so the process is painless and safe. The test results are usually received in four to six weeks.
You may be charged the cost of the genetic testing if results prove that you are the father. If you are not the father, the State of Kansas will pay for the testing.
How is the amount of monthly child support set?
The State of Kansas has statewide Child Support Guidelines that must be followed when setting a child support order.
These Guidelines balance the needs of the child, other children in the family, the cost of work-related child care, the cost of the child’s insurance, and the incomes of both parents. Adjustments may be made to fit special circumstances.
What enforcement actions can CSS take to ensure payment?
The most effective way to collect child support is through an Income Withholding Order (IWO). An IWO is sent to the employer, who sets up an automatic payroll deduction for support.
However, if payments are not being made and an employer is unknown, other actions such as passport denial, recreational license denial, driver's license restriction, Consumer Credit Bureau reporting, offset (tax intercept) or contempt can be used.
What happens if I change jobs?
You should contact the Child Support Call Center immediately to report any new employment. As long as CSS knows who the new employer is, the IWO can be sent to the employer. You are responsible for making payments on your own until the new IWO is in place.
Where do I send support payments?
All support payments in Kansas are handled by the Kansas Payment Center (KPC). The KPC has many options and services for parents paying support. To learn more, visit the KPC website, www.kspaycenter.com
. One of the fastest ways for you to make a payment is by making it online with the KPC through the KPCpay application. Payments by electronic check can be made without any additional fee.
It is important for all support payments from you and your employer to be sent to the KPC, so that the payment will be shown on the court’s payment record. Unless otherwise ordered by a court, direct payments will be considered a gift and no credit will be given towards the child support obligation.
If mailing a payment, send it to the Kansas Payment Center, P.O. Box 758599, Topeka, KS 66675-8599. Write your name, social security number and the court order number on the check or money order for proper crediting.
Do I have a right to spend time with my child (parenting time)?
Parenting time, also referred to as ‘visitation’, is often the key to a healthy relationship between you and your child. If there is no order for parenting time, you and the custodial parent (CP) can arrange parenting time informally by agreement. Once a paternity and/or support order is established, either parent may ask a court to set parenting time arrangements. If there is a disagreement, the court would have to settle this matter.
Parenting time is separate from child support services, and is not handled by CSS. It is an issue that must be handled by a private attorney.
If I am not making my child support payments, does the CP have to allow parenting time
If an order for parenting time exists, that order must be followed until the court changes it.
My monthly child support has always been the same. Can I change it?
Once child support is set, it continues at the same rate until it is legally changed. Normally, CSS will review your case every three years to see if a modification of your child support order under the Support Guidelines is appropriate. Your case can be reviewed sooner if there is a substantial change in circumstances. For a Kansas order, this could be when a child turns age six, twelve, or when a permanent change in income(s) would make the support order change by ten percent or more. If either parent asks CSS to review and modify the order, it could go up or down, depending on the facts at that time.
If you believe a modification of your current order would be appropriate you may contact the Child Support Call Center.
How long will the order for current support last?
It depends on the law of the state that issues the order. For Kansas orders, current support lasts until the child emancipates (reaches adulthood). For most children, that is their 18th birthday. If a child turns eighteen while still attending high school, the child’s current support order automatically continues until the end of that school year. In very rare cases, the court may order support to continue until the child turns nineteen if the child is still in high school. If you think this will apply to your child, you must tell us before the child turns 18.
Kansas current support orders automatically go down as each child emancipates. For example, an order for three children will be reduced by one-third when the oldest child becomes an adult.
Are there incentives offered to noncustodial parents who owe the State arrears?
Yes, please see the incentives listing.