Children Support Enforcement Programs
JFS Home |
Additional Resources and Links
| Help Me Grow
Adjusting Your Child Support Order
Questions and answers about your right to an administrative review.
Overview (below are links to bookmarks on this page)
Parenting is a Partnership
Children benefit when both parents work together to take care of their
children's emotional and financial needs. This is true even when the parents
are not married to one another. Children have the right to support from both
parents. They do not lose this right if their parents divorce or never
When children do not get child support, they may:
- suffer emotionally and physically
- have a reduced standard of living
- not have their basic needs met
- not support their children when they become parents
Beyond the partnership between parents, other participants exist to help
Ohio's children get the support they are due. These partnerships include:
- parents and child support enforcement agencies (CSEAs)
- CSEAs and county departments of Job & Family Services, public
children services agencies, courts, and health care
- parents, advocacy groups, and government agencies,
federal, state and local governments
- These partnerships help children whose parents are
divorced or were never married. Many partners must work
together with the children's best interests in mind to get
children all of the financial, medical, and other benefits
they are due.
This site explains one way in which parents, CSEAs, and
courts can work together as parents when an administrative
review of a child support order is necessary. Knowing about
your right to an administrative review and understanding the
review process will help you to be an active and effective
partner in child support.
An administrative review is a process used when one party to a child support
case believes the amount of child support ordered to be paid should be
changed because it is too high or too low.
Either the custodial or the non-custodial parent can ask the CSEA to do an
administrative review. The custodial parent has primary custody of the
child. The non-custodial parent is the parent who does not have primary
custody of the child and who must pay child support.
When doing an administrative review, the CSEA uses state guideline to
objectively review the information provided. It then makes an independent
recommendation on the amount of child support that should be paid.
There are two reasons a review is done:
- The CSEA performs a review on request in certain
situations. Either parent can ask for the review.
- If the custodial parent receives public assistance, the
CSEA must perform a review automatically every three years.
A request for a review can be made at any CSEA in Ohio. If the child support
order was begun at a different CSEA, the CSEA you contact will send your
request to that CSEA, which will then do the review.
Any CSEA client can ask for a review to change a child support order if the
order is at least three years old. You can also ask for a review if it has
been less than three years since your order was set up or reviewed.
If it has been less than three years since your order was set up or
reviewed, you must show that one of the following exists to get a review:
- Either parent's income has changed by 30 percent (up
or down). The change is expected to last or has lasted for
at least six months.
- When the order was set up, the non-custodial parent
was underemployed or unemployed. Now he or she has a
- The non-custodial parent has been unemployed for at
least six months.
- The non-custodial parent is in jail or in an
institution, the child is under the age of 18, and there
are no assets available to pay child support.
- The non-custodial parent is disabled. The CSEA must
have proof of the disability from a doctor.
An order will not be reviewed if any of the following exist:
- Legal action is pending on the case.
- The children on the order have legally become
- The CSEA has determined that reviewing the order
would not be in the best interest of the children.
- The person asking for the review refuses to sign the
required application for the CSEA services.
- The location of the non-custodial parent is not
The following happen when an administrative review is begun:
- Each parent gets a packet in the mail giving the
review data and asking for income information. Each
parent has 60 days to return the completed packet to
- If either parent does not give the CSEA the
information it asked for, the CSEA will make a
reasonable estimate of that parent's income.
- Once the CSEA finishes the review, it will file
its recommendation with the court and mail it to both
parents. Information on the recommendation will not be
given over the telephone. The recommendation may be to
increase the amount of child support, decrease it, or
leave it the same.
- Each parent has 30 days to object to the
recommendation and ask for an administrative hearing.
If neither parent objects to the recommendation, the
CSEA will file an entry with the court and the child
support order will be changed.
If either parent objects to the recommendation within
the 30 days, the CSEA will schedule an administrative
hearing. Both parents will be told of the hearing date
- After the administrative hearing, the CSEA will
send the recommendation decided on at the
administrative hearing to the court.
- Each parent has 15 days to object to this
recommendation and ask for a court hearing, if needed.
- The effective date on the new child support order
will be the same as the review date. The CSEA may have
the child support taken from the pay of the
non-custodial parent with a wage withholding order.
The new amount will show up in the child support check
about four weeks from the filing date on the new
Any requested review can be stopped before its scheduled review date.
However, once the CSEA reviews a case, it must issue its recommendation.
No. A CSEA investigator will do the independent desk review as objectively
as possible. If you disagree with the recommendation, you can ask for an
If you have problems
or need more information contact:
Office of Child Support Enforcement
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services
30 East Broad Street, 31st Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43266-0423
Phone: (800) 686-1556
Child Support Enforcement Agency:
If you have a hearing problem:
Phone: (614) 752-3951
JFS Home |
Additional Resources and Links
| Child Health
Back to top of page