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Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q.  What is PACSES?
A.  PACSES is the name for the child support in Pennsylvania.  PACSES is an abbreviation for Pennsylvania's Automated Child Support Enforcement System.
  
Q.  How can I obtain information on my support account?
A.  There are three methods which can be used to obtain information.  You can access account information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by logging on the PACSES PORTAL at the following web address: www.childsupport.state.pa.us or you can call the IVR (Interactive Voice Response) at 1-877-727-7238.  You can also, with proper identification, receive information at our office Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:00 PM.
  
Q.  What are retro-arrears?
A.  These are arrears which accrue from the date of filing to the time the support order is entered into the PACSES system.
  
Q.  What are normal arrears?
A.  Normal arrears are arrears that accrue after the support order is entered.
  
Q.  How do normal arrears become retro arrears?
A.  When a support payment is missed in any given month, normal arrears sweep to retro-arrears.  Once this sweep occurs, the arrears are subjected to all enforcement methods as stated in the order for support.
  
Q.  I am paying support, but the plaintiff is not receiving his/her payments.
A.  The plaintiff is on welfare and the support money is being sent to the welfare department to recoup some of the welfare benefits which are being paid to the plaintiff.
  
Q.  Why are cases submitted to IRS Tax Office?
A.  A case becomes eligible for this enforcement method when support payments are not made in a timely manner as directed by the support order or when normal arrears become retro-arrears.  The criteria for submission is a $500.00 arrears balance for non-welfare cases and $150.00 for welfare cases.  The monthly charge is taken into consideration when the arrears are calculated for submission.
  
Q.  Why are support cases submitted to STROP or Pennsylvania Tax Intercept?
A.  A case becomes eligible for this enforcement method when support payments are not made as ordered.  The submission criteria are all delinquent cases with arrears over $150.00 will be submitted.  The monthly charge is taken into consideration when the arrears are calculated for submission.
  
Q.  Why has my case been submitted to the Credit Bureau?
A.  All support payments must be made in a timely manner.  When payments are late or missed, your case will be submitted to the Credit Bureau.
  
Q.  When do my payments begin?
A.  Payments begin the day the support order is final.  Payment is expected even if exceptions to the order are filed.
  
Q.  My wages are to be attached for the support payments.  Should I pay on my own until I see the support deduction from my pay?
A.  Yes, if you don't pay, the retro-arrears become normal arrears and you are subjected to all enforcement methods.
  
Q.  Where do I mail payments?
A.  Pennsylvania has a centralized payment center called SCDU or Support Collections Disbursement Unit.  The address is: Pennsylvania SCDU, PO Box 69110, Harrisburg PA 17106-9110.
  
Q.  How should I report changes in address or employment?
A.  Your court order states that parties must, within seven days, inform the Domestic Relations Section in writing of any material changes in circumstances relevant to the level of support or the administration of the support order, including, but not limited to, loss or change of employment and change of personal address or change of address of any child receiving support.  A party who willfully fails to report a material change in circumstances may be listed for contempt court.
  
Q.  I believe that I am not the father of the child listed in the support petition.  What can I do?
A.  You can deny paternity at the conference and request genetic testing.

 

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