The department may contract with or employ a collection agency or other person to enforce a support obligation of a parent who is delinquent in making support payments and may contract with or employ an attorney to appear in an action in state or federal court to enforce such an obligation. To pay for the department's administrative costs of implementing this subsection, the department may charge a fee to counties, use federal matching funds or funds retained by the department under s. 49.24 (2) (c)
, or use up to 30 percent of this state's share of a collection made under this subsection on behalf of a recipient of aid to families with dependent children or a recipient of kinship care payments under s. 48.57 (3m)
or long-term kinship care payments under s. 48.57 (3n)
The department may charge other states and counties seeking collection of child and spousal support for any administrative costs it incurs in providing services related to interstate child support collections, the federal parent locator service under 42 USC 653
, the interception of unemployment compensation under 42 USC 654
or the withholding of state and federal income tax refunds under s. 49.855
and 42 USC 664
The department shall promulgate rules that provide a standard for courts to use in determining a child support obligation based upon a percentage of the gross income and assets of either or both parents. The rules shall provide for consideration of the income of each parent and the amount of physical placement with each parent in determining a child support obligation in cases in which a child has substantial periods of physical placement with each parent.
The department shall disclose to a consumer reporting agency, as defined under 45 CFR 303.105
(a), the amount of overdue child support owed by a parent. At least 20 business days before disclosing the information to the consumer reporting agency, the department shall notify the parent and inform the parent of the methods available for contesting the accuracy of the information.
The department shall notify a consumer reporting agency within 30 days if any amounts reported to the consumer reporting agency under par. (a)
were erroneous. Within 30 days of notification under this paragraph, the consumer reporting agency shall correct the erroneous amount in its records.
The department shall notify a consumer reporting agency within 30 days if any amounts reported to the consumer reporting agency under par. (a)
are paid in full. Within 30 days of notification under this paragraph, the consumer reporting agency shall indicate the payment in full in its records.
The department or a county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
may not release information to a person about the whereabouts of another person if any of the following applies:
The person seeking the information is subject to a temporary restraining order or injunction under s. 813.12
with respect to the person about whom the information is sought; and the department or county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
has notice of the temporary restraining order or injunction.
The department or county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
has reason to believe that releasing the information may result in physical or emotional harm to the person about whom the information is sought.
Subject to par. (b)
, the department may terminate child and spousal support enforcement services if there is no longer a current support or maintenance order and either of the following applies:
Any support or maintenance arrearages total less than $500.
Any support or maintenance arrearages are considered unenforceable by a county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
because no support or maintenance payments have been collected for 3 years and all administrative and legal remedies for collection of arrearages have been attempted or are determined to be ineffective because the payer is unable to pay, the payer has no known income or assets, and there is no reasonable prospect that the payer will be able to pay in the foreseeable future.
The department shall, not less than 60 days prior to terminating child or spousal support services, notify the individual who receives the services, or the initiating state in an interstate enforcement action, of its intent to terminate services. If the individual or the state provides information to the department in response to the notification that could result in an effective enforcement action, the department may not terminate services.
An individual or the initiating state in an interstate enforcement action may request the department to resume child or spousal support enforcement services terminated under this subsection if there is a change of circumstances that could result in an effective enforcement action and the individual or the state completes a new application for services and pays any applicable fee to the department for its services.
History: 1975 c. 82
; 1977 c. 26
; 1979 c. 196
; 1981 c. 20
; 1983 a. 27
; 1985 a. 29
; 1987 a. 27
; 1987 a. 332
; 1987 a. 399
; 1989 a. 31
; 1991 a. 39
; 1993 a. 16
; 1995 a. 27
, 9126 (19)
, 9130 (4)
; 1995 a. 77
; 1995 a. 404
; Stats. 1995 s. 49.22; 1997 a. 27
; 1999 a. 32
; 2001 a. 16
; 2003 a. 33
; 2005 a. 25
; 2007 a. 20
, 9121 (6) (a)
; 2015 a. 55
; 2017 a. 334
See also chs. DCF 150
, Wis. adm. code.
The state may request patient billing records under s. 46.25 (2m) [now s. 49.22 (2m)], which may be admitted into evidence under the exception to confidentiality under s. 146.82 (2) (a) 3. State v. Allen, 200 Wis. 2d 301
, 546 N.W.2d 517
Information contained in a county paternity case file may be released for purposes of fraud investigation of the public assistance programs specified in s. 49.53 [now s. 49.83]. 80 Atty. Gen. 226
Ordering genetic tests. 49.225(2)(a)(a)
A county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
may require, by subpoena in substantially the form authorized under s. 885.02
or by other means, a child, the child's mother and a male alleged, or alleging himself, to be the child's father to submit to genetic tests if there is probable cause to believe that the male had sexual intercourse with the child's mother during a possible time of the child's conception. Probable cause of sexual intercourse during a possible time of conception may be established by a sufficient affidavit of the child's mother or the male alleged, or alleging himself, to be the child's father.
If there is only one male alleged, or alleging himself, to be the father and one or more persons required to submit to genetic tests under par. (a)
fail to appear for the scheduled tests, the county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
may bring an action under s. 767.80
for determining the paternity of the child.
The fees and costs for genetic tests performed on any person required to submit to the tests under sub.(2) (a)
shall be paid for by the county except as follows:
The county may seek reimbursement from either the mother or male alleged, or alleging himself, to be the father, or from both, if the test results show that the male is not excluded as the father and that the statistical probability of the male's parentage is 99.0 percent or higher.
If 2 or more identical series of genetic tests are performed upon the same person, the county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
shall require the person requesting the 2nd or subsequent series of tests to pay for the tests in advance. If the person requesting the 2nd or subsequent series of tests is indigent, the county shall pay for the tests and may seek reimbursement from the person.
History: 1997 a. 191
; 2005 a. 443
Program for publication of delinquent child support obligors.
The department shall establish a program to increase public awareness about the importance of the payment of child support. The program shall include publication of information, such as names and photographs, that identifies child support obligors who are significantly delinquent in the payment of child support. The department may use posters, media presentations or other means that the department determines are appropriate for publication of the information. The publications shall include information about the child support owed by each obligor identified and, if appropriate, shall solicit information from the public to assist the department in locating a delinquent obligor.
History: 1995 a. 12
; 1997 a. 191
; Stats. 1997 s. 49.227; 1999 a. 32
Child support incentive payments. 49.24(1)(1)
The department shall provide child support incentive payments to counties from one of the following appropriations:
If federal legislation provides for the matching of federal funds for federal child support incentive payments at a rate of 66 percent or more, from the appropriation under s. 20.437 (2) (k)
while the federal legislation is in effect. Total payments under this paragraph may not exceed $5,690,000 per year.
The department shall, in consultation with representatives of counties, promulgate a rule that specifies the formula according to which the payments under sub. (1)
and federal child support incentive payments will be distributed to counties. The rule shall provide that the total of state and federal incentive payments per year to a county may not exceed the costs per year of the county's child support program under s. 49.22
Subject to the incentive payments limit specified in par. (a)
, the department shall distribute to counties, in accordance with the formula established under par. (a)
, all of the following:
Of the amount of federal child support incentive payments awarded to the state for each federal fiscal year, the amount awarded if that amount is less than $12,340,000, or $12,340,000 plus 30 percent of the amount awarded that exceeds $12,340,000.
All federal matching funds associated with the amounts distributed under subd. 2.
The department may retain 70 percent of the amount of federal child support incentive payments awarded to the state for each federal fiscal year that exceeds $12,340,000, to be used to pay the costs of the department's activities under ss. 49.22
and costs related to receiving and disbursing support and support-related payments.
If the amount of federal child support incentive payments awarded to the state for a federal fiscal year is less than $12,340,000 and the department is providing child support incentive payments to counties for that federal fiscal year under sub. (1) (b)
, the total of payments distributed to counties under par. (b)
and sub. (1)
for that federal fiscal year may not exceed $12,340,000.
A county that receives any state child support incentive payment under sub. (1)
or any federal child support incentive payment under sub. (2)
may use the funds only to pay costs under its child support program under s. 49.22
See also ch. DCF 153
, Wis. adm. code.
Incentive payments for identifying children with health insurance.
From the appropriation under s. 20.437 (2) (e)
, the department may provide incentive payments to county child support agencies under s. 59.53 (5)
for identifying children who are receiving medical assistance benefits and who have health insurance coverage or access to health insurance coverage. The department of children and families may disclose to the department of health services information that it possesses or obtains that would assist in identifying children with medical assistance coverage who have health insurance coverage or access to health insurance coverage.
History: 2009 a. 28
Case management incentive payments.
An individual who receives case management services under s. 49.1475
is eligible to receive from the department a supplement of $50 per month over a period of 12 months if the individual meets the federal work participation requirements under 42 USC 607
History: 2017 a. 59
Milwaukee child care grant program. 49.257(2)
From the allocation under s. 49.175 (1) (p)
, the department may award grants to child care providers to support access to high-quality child care for families that reside in a geographic area with high-poverty levels, as identified by the department, in the city of Milwaukee. A grant under this section may be used for start-up costs, ongoing operational costs, including subsidy payments for eligible families, and quality improvement activities. A child care provider that is awarded a grant under this subsection shall contribute matching funds equal to 25 percent of the amount awarded. The matching contribution may be in the form of money or in-kind goods or services.
From the allocation under s. 49.175 (1) (qm)
, the department may award grants to any of the following to improve overall child care quality in the geographic area identified under sub. (2)
Child care providers and employees of child care providers.
Educational institutions for the purpose of educating employees of child care providers.
History: 2019 a. 9
Learnfare program. 49.26(1)(a)2.d.
A course of study meeting the standards established by the state superintendent of public instruction under s. 115.29 (4)
for the granting of a declaration of equivalency of high school graduation.
A county department or Wisconsin works agency may provide services under this subsection directly or may contract with a nonprofit agency or a school district to provide the services.
A county department or Wisconsin Works agency that provides services under this subsection directly shall develop a plan, in coordination with the school districts located in whole or in part in the county, describing the assistance that the county department or Wisconsin Works agency and school districts will provide to individuals receiving services under this subsection, the number of individuals that will be served and the estimated cost of the services. The county department or Wisconsin Works agency shall submit the plan to the department and the department of public instruction by January 15, annually.
For an individual who is a recipient of aid under s. 49.19
, or whose custodial parent is a participant under s. 49.147 (3)
, who is the parent with whom a dependent child lives and who is subject to the school attendance requirement under par. (ge)
, the department shall make a monthly payment to the individual or the child care provider for the month's child care costs in an amount based on need with the maximum amount per child equal to the lesser of the actual cost of the care or the rate established under s. 49.155 (6)
if the individual demonstrates the need to purchase child care services in order to attend school and those services are available from a child care provider.
An individual who is a dependent child in a Wisconsin Works group that includes a participant under s. 49.147 (3)
, or (5)
or who is a recipient of aid under s. 49.19
is subject to the school attendance requirement under par. (ge)
if all of the following apply:
Before the first day of the fall 1994 school term, as defined in s. 115.001 (12)
, the individual is 13 to 17 years of age. Beginning on the first day of the fall 1997 school term, as defined in s. 115.001 (12)
, the individual is 6 to 17 years of age.
The individual has not graduated from a public, private, or tribal high school or obtained a declaration of equivalency of high school graduation under s. 115.29 (4)
The individual is a parent or is residing with his or her natural or adoptive parent.
If the individual is the caretaker of a child, the child is at least 45 days old and child care is available for the child at the school or the school provides an instruction program for the caretaker at home.
If child care services are necessary in order for the individual to attend school, child care from a child care provider is available for the child and transportation to and from child care is also available.
If the individual was expelled from a school under s. 119.25
or 120.13 (1)
, there is another school available which the individual can attend.
The individual does not have good cause for failing to attend school, as defined by the department by rule.
If the individual is the mother of a child, a physician has not determined that the individual should delay her return to school after giving birth.
If the individual is on a waiting list for a children-at-risk program under s. 118.153
, a children-at-risk program that is appropriate for the individual is not available.
An individual fails to meet the school attendance requirement if the individual meets at least one of the following conditions:
The individual is either not enrolled in school or is a habitual truant.
During the immediately preceding semester, the individual was either not enrolled in school or was a habitual truant.
The Wisconsin Works agency or county department shall verify school enrollment and attendance.
The following individuals who are subject to the school attendance requirement under the learnfare program are required to participate in case management under sub. (2) (b)