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Best Practice/Emerging Ideas in Prevention and Early Intervention Strategies

DCL-05-05

Published: February 28, 2005
Information About:
State/Local Child Support Agencies
Topics:
Case Management, Collections/Distribution/State Disbursement Unit (SDU)
Types:
Policy, Dear Colleague Letters (DCL)

DEAR COLLEAGUE LETTER

DCL-05-05

ATTACHMENT: Format sample

DATE: January 28, 2005

TO: ALL STATE IV-D DIRECTORS

RE: Best Practice/Emerging Ideas in Prevention and Early Intervention Strategies

Dear Colleague:

Over the past several years, we have worked collaboratively to develop the new National Child Support Enforcement Strategic Plan. One of the major new strategies is to “Emphasize prevention and early intervention” to address child support collections.

OCSE would like to dedicate our next series of Best Practice papers to Prevention and Early Intervention Strategies that states and local agencies have developed. We are asking you to share those practices that have proven to increase collections and improve the operation of your state or local child support office. Some examples provided in the Strategic Plan that emphasize prevention and early intervention are:

• Intervene early to modify orders, correcting mismatches between ordered payments and ability to pay.

• Take prompt steps, as soon as payment is missed, to work with parents to resume payments.

• Provide easy access to genetic testing or voluntary in-hospital paternity acknowledgement for parents of children born out of wedlock.

• Update child support guidelines regularly and simplify order modification.

• Develop automation tools that spotlight opportunities for early intervention to avoid payment problems or arrears.

If your state has strategies, practices, or methods in place that have resulted in the prevention of child support problems, please let us know so that we can share them nationwide. We make individual Best/Promising Practices available electronically.

If you have achieved results on performance measures, improved customer service, increased medical support coverage, expanded partnerships with other agencies, the courts or with community-based and/or faith-based organizations, please share those as well.

Finally, we are also interested in practices that may be in the early stages of development and seem promising. This would include practices which may not have delivered results yet but are likely to do so after they have been in effect for a longer period of time, or plans that your state has for projects that you think will eventually lead to good results.

Please contact Sue Sosler, with our Division of State, Tribal and Local Assistance with leads and the name, e-mail and phone for your staff person. Ms. Sosler coordinates and edits the compendium. She can be reached at ssosler@acf.hhs.gov or (202) 401-5561.

You can view the 2003 Edition of the Best Practices/Good Ideas Compendium.

For your convenience, we are providing an outline of the format we use. We look forward to learning about your projects.

Sincerely,

David H. Siegel
Acting Commissioner
Office of Child Support Enforcement

Regional Administrators, ACF
CSE Regional Program Managers, ACF

Enclosure

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