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Child Support Services At A Glance

CSS works to bring children the full advantage of parental support and involvement by helping families determine paternity, establish orders for child support and medical support, and facilitate regular and reliable payments

CSS Statewide – SFY 2021 (Statistics ending June 30, 2021):

  • Collected more than $358 million in child support
  • Served 189,028 Oklahoma children
  • Recorded 14,339 paternity establishments and acknowledgments
  • Established child support orders in 82 percent of open cases
  • Collected $5.89 for each dollar spent by the program

CSS helps families leave and avoid public assistance programs.

As families receive more financial support from both parents, they are less likely to need assistance from taxpayer-funded benefit programs including Medicaid, TANF, SNAP, SSI, Housing Subsidies, Foster Care, School Lunch, Child Care, and WIC. In fact, families receiving child support are more likely to exit and remain off of public assistance than any other source of unearned income1

Investment in child support reduces other public spending2  CSS collections in SFY 2021 resulted in:

$57,151,312 Avoided by other programs
 $20,735,762 Recovered for other programs
$77,887,074 Total Cost Avoidance and Recovery (total state & federal dollars)3

This exceeds the total CSS SFY 2021 costs of $60,760,715 by over $17 million.

Families who receive child support are better able to remain self-sufficient, with decreased rates of re-entry into public assistance and a slower job loss rate than those without regular child support4. Child support benefits children’s educational outcomes, reduces the risk of child maltreatment, increases parental involvement among nonresident parents, and reduces non-marital births and divorce5

A few more facts:

  • Child Support is the third largest social services program in number of children served (after Medicaid and Food Stamps (SNAP)), serving seven times as many children as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and three times as many as Social Security5
  • Child Support is one of the most cost-effective programs in government6
  • In 2020, 44 percent of Oklahoma births were to unmarried mothers7
  • CSS caseload-to-worker ratio has increased 32% in 15 years8

[1]  US Department of Health & Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, “Child Support and TANF Interaction:
Literature Review, April 2003.

[2]  Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE), 2016: The Child Support Program is a Good Investment, The Story Behind the Numbers.

[3] Oklahoma Department of Human Services-Child Support Services, Oklahoma SFY 2021 Cost Avoidance and Cost Recovery Calculations based on Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement-Urban Institute study

[4] Center for Law and Social Policy Research Fact Sheet, Child Support Substantially Increases Economic Well-Being of Low- and Moderate-Income Families 

[5]  Oklahoma Human Services, Child Support Services, Public Programs Comparison

[6]  US Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Child Support Enforcement 2019 Annual Report to Congress

[7]  Oklahoma State Department of Health birth data file sent to CSS

[8]  Oklahoma Humans Services-Child Support Services, Perf Meas Comparison

Last Modified on May 19, 2022
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