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Child Support Main Page


    Lori A. Cruz
    826 N. California St.
    Stockton, CA 95202
    (866) 901-3212 Phone
    (209) 468-2577 Fax


    Contact us
    Child Support

    Employer Handbook
    and Employer FAQ

    Glossary of Terms


    State Disbursement Unit
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    New Payment Choices

    Customer Connect
    California DCSS
    DCSS Performance

    Other Links

    Support Services
    Apply For Services
    Locate a Parent
    Establish Paternity
    Child Support Calculator
    Support Enforcement
    Health Insurance

    Compromise of Arrears
    Program (COAP)

    Paternity Opportunity
    Program (POP)

    Declaration of Paternity
    Complaint Resolution
    Ombudsman Program



The San Joaquin County Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) helps parents fulfill their responsibilities to their children by providing a variety of services

  • Establishing paternity
  • Locating a parent to establish paternity and/or child support and enforcing payment of support
  • Establishing, modifying and enforcing a court order to pay child support
  • Collecting and distributing child and spousal support payments
  • Establishing and enforcing medical support (including dental and vision care) and family support orders


  • Handle custody or visitation matters
  • Handle divorces
  • Obtain or enforce restraining orders
  • Establish spousal support orders

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:

  • A copy of your child(ren)'s birth certificate(s)
  • Verification of your child care expenditures
  • Paternity declaration if this form was signed by the father in the hospital at the time of birth
  • Three of your most recent pay stubs
  • A copy of your last year's tax return (State and Federal)
  • A copy of the original order and all subsequent modifications (if applicable)
  • A completed Support Payment Record together with any documentation you may have substantiating your outstanding balance

Be prepared to provide the other parent's and your:

  • Full legal name, address and phone number
  • Date of birth and most current physical description or photograph of the noncustodial parent
  • Social Security number (You can find this by reviewing old pay stubs, income tax returns, credit or loan applications, bank checking or savings accounts, insurance or health records, or military or union records. If you don't have one of these documents, but your name was also on the form, you can usually obtain a copy by writing to the appropriate agency.)
  • Name and address of current or most recent employer
  • Names of friends and relatives and organizations to which the noncustodial parent might belong
  • Information pertaining to income and other assets (pay slips, tax returns, bank accounts, cars, boats, R.V.s, investments or property holdings)
  • Your marriage license or certificate, if you have one
  • Your divorce decree or separation agreement, if you have one
  • Any other information the Child Support Officer requests

Complete, reliable and accurate information makes it easier to enforce your order for child support.

Locating the Parent

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.


© San Joaquin County 2003