Upon application for child support enforcement services or application for any public assistance, all basic support, medical support, child care and spousal maintenance payments must come through the Minnesota Child Support Payment Center. Payments must be sent to:
Minnesota Child Support Payment Center
P.O. Box 64326
Saint Paul, MN 55164-0326
The Child Support Enforcement Division collects current and past due basic support, medical support, child care and in some situations, spousal maintenance. Medical support may include dependent health and dental insurance coverage and cash payments to cover medical expenses. The Child Support Enforcement Division has many ways to enforce basic support, medical support and child care orders if an obligor does not pay. All efforts will be made to get the obligor to comply with the court order before using court action.
The Child Support Enforcement Division's methods of collecting support include:
Automatic deductions may be taken from the obligor's paycheck. This is called "income withholding." The employer must send income withholding payments through the Minnesota Child Support Payment Center. Income withholding is one of the best ways to make sure the obligor pays support in full and on time. According to Minnesota law, every order establishing or modifying child support must address whether income withholding should be started or waived.
Driver's License Suspension
Obligors' driver's licenses may be suspended for failure to pay child support or spousal maintenance. Three conditions must be met before a license may be suspended:
- The license holder is in arrears in court-ordered child support, spousal maintenance payments, or both;
- The arrearage is at least three times the obligor's total monthly support obligation; and
- The obligor is not in compliance with a written payment agreement for current support and arrearages that has been approved by the court or by the child support agency.
Conditions for a payment agreement may include a plan in which the obligor pays arrears at a rate that is no less than an additional 20 percent per month of the amount of the monthly obligation for current child support. Current support must also be paid in full each month.
An obligor may be excluded from the driver's license suspension tool if a number of conditions exist, which include:
- A mistake of fact exists, and the obligor is not at least three months in arrears in child support payments;
- The obligor receives public assistance (but not public assistance in the forms of food stamps, RSDI, Medical Assistance, or MinnesotaCare);
- The amount due is not required to be paid at the time. An example of this is where the court has ordered an obligor to pay expenses for the birth of a child, but the court has reserved payment on the expenses;
- A modification that addresses both current support and arrears is pending; or
- The obligor has filed for bankruptcy and a stay has been issued.
Occupational License Suspension
An obligor's occupational licenses (e.g., attorney licenses, physician licenses, real estate licenses, plumbing licenses) may be suspended for failure to comply with child support and spousal maintenance orders. The same conditions and exceptions applicable to driver's license suspension apply to occupational license suspension.
Recreational License Suspension
An obligor’s recreational license (a license, permit or stamp issued by the Department of Natural Resources, including but not limited to hunting and fishing licenses) may be suspended by court order after a hearing for failure to pay child support or spousal maintenance. The same conditions and exceptions applicable to driver’s license and occupational license suspension apply to recreational license suspension, except that the obligor must be at least six times behind in payments.
Tax Refund Intercept
If an obligor is behind on support payments, the Child Support Enforcement Division may seek interception of Federal and State tax refunds to pay past due support. The following rules apply when seeking interception of a tax refund and the custodial parent does not receive public assistance:
- For federal taxes, the obligor must be $500.00 in arrears before the county may intercept the taxes.
- The federal refund must first go to any past due support (arrearages) owed to the state.
- If the refund is from a joint filing, the refund will be held for up to six months to give the non-custodial parent's spouse time to file an injured spouse claim.
Lottery Winnings Intercept
State lottery winnings may be intercepted if the non-custodial parent owes child support.
If an obligor is three times the monthly obligation in past due support, the Child Support Enforcement Division may report to credit reporting agencies that the parent is delinquent. The child support debt may make it more difficult for that parent to get credit or get a loan approved.
Lien, levy and seizure
The Child Support Enforcement Division may obtain liens on real property and levy on funds of a non-custodial parent who owes past due support.
Financial Information Data Match (FIDM)
Federal and state child support offices relay information about obligor financial accounts to the Ramsey County Child Support Enforcement Section. If a Social Security number from a financial account matches a list of obligors' who owe child support arrearages, the County may place a lien on the funds in the account up to the amount of child support arrearages. After forty-five days to permit the obligor time to challenge the lien, the financial institution forwards the funds to the Minnesota Child Support Payment Center for distribution.
The Child Support Enforcement Section may also request the court to hold an obligor in contempt for failure to comply with the court's order. A contempt proceeding may result in the obligor going to jail.
The Child Support Enforcement Division has the right to determine the type of action to use to collect support for you. It also has the right to decide which county is best able to provide services to you. The goal of the Child Support Enforcement Division is to obtain proper services for your case.
For more information about enforcement tools, see the Minnesota Department of Human Services website or contact your assigned agent.
Services Provided | Right to Support | Paternity Establishment | Child Support Establishment
Enforcement | Interstate Act | Employer Info | Legal Forms | Additional Resources