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Oklahoma Child Support Services: $35 Annual Fee FAQ

1. Who pays the fee?
The custodial person. You owe $35 after CSS collects and sends you $550 of child support in a federal fiscal year. CSS will take $35 from your next child support payment. The fee goes to the federal government.

2. Do all child support cases pay the fee?
No. Your case is only charged $35 if you get at least $550 in child support during a federal fiscal year. Also, the fee does not apply to cases getting cash assistance through TANF or AFDC now or in the past.

3. When will CSS start collecting the fee?
It began in early 2010.

4. Why is this fee being collected?
The requirement for the fee is in the Social Security Act, Section 454(6)(B)(ii).

5. How are customers notified of this fee?
New customers are notified in the application and Child Support Handbook.

6. How often is the fee charged?
The fee is charged once every federal fiscal year after CSS collects and sends a case $550 in child support.

7. What is a “federal fiscal year”?
It is the 12 months from October 1 to September 30. CSS adds up your support payments starting each October. After you get $550, CSS takes $35 from your next payment.

8. How do I pay the federal fee?
CSS will take $35 from the next child support collection after it has collected and sent at least $550 in a federal fiscal year.

10. What if I do not get $550 in a federal fiscal year?
You will not be charged the $35 fee.

11. What if I get more than $550 per year in child support? Will CSS take the $35 fee more than once?
The fee does not go up if you get more than $550.

13.  Does the non-custodial parent get credit for the fee collected from my support payment?
Yes. Federal law says non-custodial parents get full credit for support paid. For example, if $550 was sent to you this year and the next payment is $100, the non-custodial parent gets credit for paying $100. You get $65; the other $35 pays the federal fee.

14. My children and I get only Medicaid. Do I have to pay the fee?
Yes. Federal law excludes only current or former TANF or AFDC recipients. SoonerCare-only recipients must pay the $35 fee. In Oklahoma, Medicaid is called SoonerCare.

15. Can I avoid the $35 yearly fee?
CSS must apply the fee to all qualifying open cases. 

17. If CSS collects the $35 fee and I used to get cash assistance from Oklahoma or another state, can I get a refund?
Call CARE at 1-800-522-2922 to get a message to the person assigned to your case. If your case does not qualify for the fee, it will be returned to you.

18. I paid this year’s $35 fee in another state. What should I do if CSS charges me again?
Call CARE at 1-800-522-2922 to get a message to the person assigned to your case. The federal fee is owed only once per case per year. If both states collected the fee, the second one will return it to you.

19. What if I start getting TANF after I paid the $35?
You will not owe the fee in future years. Any past fees are still owed if they have not been paid. They will be withheld from your next child support payment.

20. Can I avoid the fee by getting child support directly from the noncustodial parent?
No. Child support payments must be made through the Oklahoma Centralized Support Registry. This is required by law.

21. Will this fee continue every year until my child support ends?
Yes. Unless the law changes, CSS will continue collecting this fee.

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