Pennsylvania Child Support Enforcement

Pennsylvania Child Support Enforcement

By Staff – Last updated

In order to enforce child support payments in Pennsylvania, a parent may be able to contact the Department of Human Services for assistance.  The agency employees in charge of child support enforcement have tools and resources available to locate a missing parent and force the parent to make payments through a variety of enforcement means including wage withholding and attachment of assets.

How to File a Complaint

In Pennsylvania, a parent is obligated to pay child support in compliance with the child support order issued by the court of original jurisdiction, even if that court is out of state.  Child support orders must be recognized and enforced across state lines since the passage of the federal Uniform Interstate Family Support Act. Child support payments must be made in accordance with the order that was either issued by a court or agreed upon by both parents.

If child support payments that are due are not forthcoming and the payments are in arrears, a custodial parent can apply for child support services by filling out an application an intake form and a complaint for support

How to Fill-in

Step 1 – Download the Application for Child Support (Adobe PDF).

Download (PDF, 64KB)

Step 2: Enter your name, social security number and name of other party and check which services for which you are applying.

Step 3: Download and fill out the intake sheet.  This is where you provide information about yourself, the children and the non-paying parent.

Download (PDF, 122KB)

Step 4: Download the complaint for support.  This is where you provide information to the court about previous child support orders and from whom you are seeking support.

Download (PDF, 158KB)

Step 4: Bring these forms in to your local county domestic relations office.  They can be found by going to this page and selecting the county you are in.

What DHS Can Do

DHS can take the following enforcement measures for non-payment of child support:
• National and State New Hire Reporting
• Federal and State Tax Refund Offset Program
• Financial Institution Data Match
• Work Requirements
• Credit Bureau Reporting
• License Suspension
• Passport Denial
• Lottery Intercept
• Intercept of Workers Compensation and Lump
Sum Personal Injury Payment
• Fine or Prison
• Publication of Name
• Liens on Real Estate


Child Support Helpline

Local Offices