September 2014 | Carmen Solomon-Fears, Congressional Research Service

Child Support Enforcement: Tribal Programs

The Child Support Enforcement (CSE) program was enacted in 1975 as a federal-state program. Its mission is to enhance the well-being of children by helping custodial parents and children obtain financial support from the non-custodial parents. Although states were always required to provide CSE services to members of Indian tribes and tribal organizations who were part of their CSE caseloads, tribes were not specifically included in the CSE statute until the 1996 welfare reform law (P.L. 104-193). The 1996 law allowed any state that has Indian country within its borders to enter into a cooperative agreement with an Indian tribe if the tribe demonstrated that it had an established tribal court system with the authority to establish paternity, and establish, modify, and enforce child support orders.

Child Support Enforcement: Tribal Programs.pdf

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