How Child Support Gets Paid in Wisconsin

Child support must be paid through the State Trust Account. The following ways are the most common way for child support to be paid in Wisconsin:

  • Income Withholding Order
  • Mailing Support Payments
  • Pay by Phone
  • Pay Online

Click here to make a Wisconsin child support payment on the state website.

Simply paying child support directly to the custodial parent is NOT legal in the state of Wisconsin. If the noncustodial parent decides, for whatever reason, to stop paying or to pay less than they owe, it's much harder to collect what's due. In this situation, since the two parties have taken it upon themselves to pay and receive payments there is no one who can act on your behalf should one side not hold up their end of the bargain.

In the cases where there is non-payment, an action would have to be taken by the court to collect the money owed. An income withholding order is one example of an action most commonly pursued. If that were to happen, setting up a withholding order or a similar action may take longer to execute than if they were pursued from the start.

Income Withholding Orders

An automatic income withholding order can be placed during child support orders, allowing for the payments to come directly out of the noncustodial parent's paycheck. This means the custodial parent doesn't have to wait for the non-custodial parent to honor prior agreements. Instead, any personal issues are avoided and the agreed upon amount is automatically deducted from the non-custodial parent's paycheck. The state will process the payment and send it directly to the custodial parent.

This is ideal for some, as it is a way to guarantee proper delivery in the expected amount each month. In some cases, it is preferable for the noncustodial parent, as well. It prevents cases of unforeseen, problematic events. This way, both parties are ensured that the amount of support and timeliness of the payments are consistent.

Child Support Enforcement Agency

The Child Support Enforcement Agency or CSEA is good at establishing compliance for child support orders. You can leverage the CSEA to enforce payment collections, processing and disbursement if there's a problem. They can also assist in the procurement of health or medical insurance as it is set forth in an order, and create a payment plan in the event of back-support being owed. To get DCF assistance, contact your county child support enforcement office.


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