Child Support Facts and Figures

Child Support Facts and Figures

Child Support: 13.6 Million Custodial Parents in the United States

If you are in the process of a divorce and you have minor children, it may be helpful to know what you can expect as far as child support is concerned. Consider these facts and figures.

CHILD SUPPORT STATISTICS:

There are about 13.6 million custodial parents in the United States.

More than half of custodial parents have some sort of agreement to receive financial support from the noncustodial parent.

Most child support arrangements are formal, legal agreements.

Almost one-quarter of custodial parents with child support orders receive no payments at all.

There is no statistical difference in the number of custodial mothers and custodial fathers who receive full child support payments.

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Five of every six custodial parents are mothers.

The number of custodial mothers in poverty is 27.7 percent. The percentage of custodial fathers in poverty is 11.1.

The average amount of child support a custodial parent receives is $5,600 a year or $465 per month.

-U.S. Census Bureau, Custodial Mothers and Fathers and Their Child Support: 2005, released August 2007

In the four years from 1996 to 2000, the amount of child support owed in the United States went from $45 billion to $89 billion

-U.S. General Accounting Office, Child Support Enforcement: Clear Guidance Would Help Ensure Access to Information and Use of Wage Withholding by Private Firms, 2002

The most effective child support payment enforcement technique is wage withholding.

Collection agencies, both private and governmental, reported that the most common reasons they could not collect owed child support were: (1) The agency could not find the noncustodial parent; (2) The noncustodial parent had no money; or (3) The noncustodial parent was in jail.

-U.S. General Accounting Office, Child Support Enforcement: Clear Guidance Would Help Ensure Access to Information and Use of Wage Withholding by Private Firms, 2002

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