State Advancements in Paternity Establishment
State Advancements in Paternity Establishment: Legislative, Gubernatorial and Program Initiatives
December 31, 1992
TO: STATE AGENCIES ADMINISTERING CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT PLANS APPROVED UNDER TITLE IV-D OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY ACT AND OTHER INTERESTED INDIVIDUALS
SUBJECT:State Advancements in Paternity Establishment: Legislative, Gubernatorial, and Program Initiatives
BACKGROUND:The issue of paternity establishment has been recognized by the Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) and the States as a major national concern.
The sheer increase in the number of children being born outside of marriage during the last thirty years has commanded our attention because, in many cases, it directly and adversely affects the economic well-being of our nation's children. As a result, this Office recognizes that there is an urgent need to develop -- at a minimum --practices and policies which make it as easy as possible for fathers to voluntarily establish their child's paternity.
Our initial goal was to collect information regarding what appears to be a flurry of legislative initiatives that have been proposed or recently passed by a significant number of States in the area of in-hospital paternity establishment.
To our delight, we were able to collect a more comprehensive overview of the current efforts undertaken by States (in addition to in-hospital programs) to streamline and/or expedite the paternity establishment process.
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ATTACHMENTS:The purpose of the attached report, State Advancements in Paternity Establishment: Legislative, Gubernatorial, and Program Initiatives, is to facilitate a "cross-fertilization" of ideas and approaches currently being implemented and/or tested by States in establishing paternity via the Child Support Enforcement program.
It is also intended to serve as a quick reference guide for State and local IV-D program staff interested in developing new initiatives in paternity establishment based on the experience of others.
In order to provide you with a national perspective, we have included a section which statistically profiles the trends and consequences of out-of-wedlock births with respect to the economic and social well-being of the child.
We also provided the names of contact persons for each legislative, gubernatorial, and/or program initiative in order to encourage a direct exchange of information. Copies of actual State legislation and/or law have been included in the Appendix for those States interested in reviewing other States legislative language.
To assist new child support program managers, we have included a section which summarizes the Federal requirements on paternity establishment and effective implementation dates.
INQUIRIES TO: OCSE Division of Program Operations, Special Initiatives Branch (202) 401-5426
Allie Page Matthews
Office of Child Support Enforcement
Contact the above number if you wish copies of the attachment.