The child support system in Texas can be a source of confusion to parents because it is often more complex than they expect it to be. There are four different categories of child support cases, which are based on their status under the Social Security Act of 1975's Title IV. These categories are IV-D cases, non-IV-D cases, IV-A cases and IV-E cases.
Non-IV-D cases are those in which the payor parent makes payments privately. Common situations for non-IV-D cases include parents having a legally binding agreement, and the payor parent has kept current with payments. It is not uncommon for non-IV-D cases to become IV-D cases. This can happen when a person was making payments and then stopped, so the other individual contacts the Office of Child Support Enforcement for help with collecting support.
In IV-D child support cases, the custodial parent receives some type of help from the OCSE. This might mean assistance with locating the other parent, enforcing a child support order or establishing paternity. The OCSE is among the first places a person can turn to for help when the other parent fails to meet child support obligations.
In IV-A cases, the payee parent receives assistance from state agencies. The state will rely on the OCSE to collect funds from the payor parent. IV-E cases are those in which the child lives with a non-parent, like a relative or foster care. The OSCE will help in these cases to recoup funds from the payor parent.
An attorney who practices family law might be able to help individuals who are owed back child support. In some cases, a lawyer may help locate the other parent and pursue recovery through wage garnishment or the seizing of assets. An attorney might draft and file legal documents to establish a garnishment order or argue on the client's behalf during official proceedings.