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California Child Support: Non-Custodial Parents Owe $19.2 Billion

Non-custodial parents owe a near-record $19.2 billion in delinquent child support payments in California – a stubbornly large amount that researchers blame primarily on the state’s high interest rate for debt.Over the years state legislato…

Non-custodial parents owe a near-record $19.2 billion in delinquent child support payments in California – a stubbornly large amount that researchers blame primarily on the state’s high interest rate for debt.

Over the years state legislators have made policy changes in an attempt to slow the soaring child support debt, but it is not a current priority.

The Department of Child Support Services arrears – which peaked at $20 billion in 2007 – has been largely driven by the number of low-income parents in the program. The debt load has been accruing since 1975 and the department estimates that about 80 percent of the arrears is owed by parents who make less than $15,000 a year.

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