The San Joaquin County Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) helps parents fulfill their responsibilities to their children by providing a variety of services
DCSS Does NOT:
Applying for Child Support Services
Any parent or guardian can apply for child support services by visiting our office or by calling the San Joaquin County DCSS at (866) 901-3212. There is no application fee or charge for child support services in California.
Parents who receive public assistance are automatically referred to DCSS by the Human Services Agency.
Your Legal Relationship With DCSS
DCSS does not represent either parent or the child(ren). DCSS attorneys are not your attorneys; therefore the information you provide is not confidential under the attorney/client privilege. The information in your case may be discussed or disclosed to other public agencies or persons authorized by law to receive such information.
Legal Assistance Alternatives
Parents have the right to seek legal advice from a private attorney or legal aid group at their own expense at any time.
A private attorney will charge for the time required for personal interviews, telephone calls, legal research, court appearances, and the preparation of pleadings.
Services offered by a legal clinic may cost less than those provided by a private attorney. Legal clinics may charge for services based on the actual time spent on a case or on a contingency fee basis.
Opening a Child Support Case
Either parent, or the caretaker/guardian of a child who has a child support and/or medical support order, or wants to establish one, can apply for child support enforcement services by completing an application form. After the application form is signed, the child support process begins. The Human Services Agency (HSA) will automatically refer parents who receive public assistance, including Medi-Cal, to DCSS.
After receiving the completed forms, our office will schedule an intake interview. The interview will expedite the processing of your case in our office. You will be notified of your assigned case number and intake worker. At this appointment, you must bring the following documents:
Be prepared to provide the other parent's and your:
Complete, reliable and accurate information makes it easier to enforce your order for child support.
To obtain an order for support, establish paternity or enforce a child support order, DCSS must know where the noncustodial parent lives or works. DCSS will make every effort to locate the noncustodial parent. If the noncustodial parent cannot be found locally, his/her Social Security number will be checked against the records of other state agencies including the Department of Health Services, Department of Motor Vehicles, Employment Development Department, Franchise Tax Board, Board of Equalization, credit reporting agencies, and law enforcement agencies. If the search reveals that the parent has moved to another state, the other state and the Federal Parent Locator Service will be asked to search for the parent.