Information about Collecting Support

Under Ohio Law, a husband and wife are equally charged with providing for their children’s care, welfare, and education. The obligation of both parents to support their children normally continues until each child turns 18 or as long as the child attends high school on a full-time basis until the child reach the age of 19. To help courts and parents decide how much support a child needs, the Ohio General Assembly has established the Ohio Child Support Guidelines. Ohio courts use these guidelines, along with other factors spelled out in state law, to help establish or modify child support. Once a support order is made, the case is open for collection. Child support cases remain open until the children are emancipated and arrearages that may have accrued are paid.

The Henry County Child Support Enforcement Agency is the administrative agency responsible for monitoring, collecting and distributing child support payments. Each support case is assigned a number under Ohio’s statewide Support Enforcement Tracking System (SETS). Payments must be made to Ohio Child Support Payment Central (“OCSPC”), a centralized processing center in Columbus, Ohio.

State law requires that the parent ordered to pay support secure the obligation. The most common and preferred method of securing collection is by mandatory income withholding from the parent’s paycheck or other income source. A parent may also be required to fund a bank account from which deductions can be regularly made, to post a cash bond, or to seek work and report employment efforts to the CSEA. If these methods are ineffective, a variety of enforcement mechanisms are available to the CSEA, without a court order. If the CSEA determines that the person paying support is in default the CSEA can:


· Intercept a federal and state tax refund

· Attach a lump sum payment due to be paid

· Suspend driver’s license (including commercial license), professional license, or recreational license

· Seize a financial account

· Place a lien on real or personal property

· Report delinquency to a credit bureau

· Publish a delinquent parent’s name and picture on a “Wanted” poster

· Notify the United States Department not to issue or renew a passport.


The Family Court has the power to find a parent who does not obey its order to pay support in contempt of court upon motion filed by a party. Under Ohio Revised Code §2705.05 the penalties are:

· A fine of up to $250 and a jail sentence of up to 30 days for a first offense

· A fine of up to $500 and a jail sentence of up to 60 days for a second offense

· A fine of up to $1,000 and a jail sentence of up to 90 days for a third or subsequent offense.


Henry County Family Court