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FAQ's

Terms and Definitions Used in the IWO and Related Forms

Some of the language used in the forms you will complete for income withholding may be unfamiliar. The terms and definitions provided below may help you navigate the federal IWO form, the IDO and other related forms:

  • Non-custodial parent (NCP) means that same thing as obligor, paying parent, payor or employee.
  • Custodial parent (CP) means the same thing as obligee, person receiving child support, and payee.
  • Remittance Identifier is the social security number of the NCP.
  • CSE agency case identifier is only used by the Georgia Division of Child Support Services (DCSS)
  • Order identifier is the civil action case number or docket number issued by the clerk of superior court in your child support action.
  • Employer Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) is the employer/income withholder’s nine-digit number. Include this number only if it is known to you.
  • First withholding time period is found in the IWO form, Remittance Information section and the number 14 is entered in this field. See O.C.G.A. § 19-6-33.
  • A date field is found in the IWO form, Remittance Information section. Enter in this field the date you mail the IWO to the employer.
  • Send payment time period is found in the IWO form, Remittance Information section and the number 2 is entered in this field. See O.C.G.A. §19-6-33.
  • Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA) % limits – see the "Withholding Limits" section on page 3 of the IWO form and refer to this website:
    http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/css/employers/income-withholding
  • Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) code is used only by the Georgia Division of Child Support Services (DCSS).
  • State Disbursement Unit (SDU) in Georgia is the Family Support Registry (FSR).

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What is the Income Withholding Order (IWO)?

The Income Withholding Order (IWO) is a mandatory form used as a NOTICE that is mailed to the noncustodial parent’s employer and identifies for the employer how much child support to deduct from the noncustodial parent’s wages. Using the form as a “notice” allows for the entry of a new IWO each time the noncustodial parent changes jobs.

Who must use the mandatory IWO?

Anyone who wants child support deducted by an employer from the wages of the NCP.

Why is the IWO form a mandatory form?

The federal government, specifically at sections 466(a)(1), (a)(8) and 466 (b)(6)(A)(ii) of the Social Security Act, requires that states use the federally approved Income Withholding Order (IWO) for the deduction of child support. Thus, this requirement applies to everyone seeking to use income withholding as a way to collect child support.

When must I use this mandatory IWO form?

Starting May 31, 2012, everyone must use the mandatory IWO form to set up the withholding of child support with an employer each time the NCP changes jobs.

What is the procedure?

Follow these steps to correctly start child support income withholding (the forms identified below are available in the left menu box of this website and must be prepared and delivered/mailed by you):

  1. Send these documents to the Family Support Registry (FSR):
    • (1) FSR registration form, and
    • (2) Income Deduction Order (IDO) as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-32(a.1)(3), including adjudicated child support arrears, if any, as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-32(b)(2).
  2. Send these documents to the Employer/Payor:
    • (1) Mandatory Federal Income Withholding Order (IWO) form,
    • (2) Income Deduction Order (IDO) as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-33(a) , and
    • (3) Notice to Payor as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-33(a).
  3. Send these documents to the Noncustodial Parent:
    • (1) Income Deduction Order (IDO) as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-32(a.1)(3), and
    • (2) Statement of Rights, Remedies, and Duties as required by O.C.G.A. § 19-6-32(e), but only when there is an IDO which is effective immediately.

Why must child support payments be made to the Family Support Registry (FSR)?

All Income Deduction Orders and related IWOs that order an employer to withhold child support payments, including those issued by courts and private attorneys, must direct payments to the state disbursement unit, which in Georgia is the FSR.

Employers/income withholders are instructed to return the IWO to the sender, if payment is not directed to the FSR.

Why is it that the Division of Child Support Services (DCSS) cannot enforce a Non-IVD private order once registered by the Family Support Registry (FSR)?

The Georgia Division of Child Support Services (DCSS), the state’s IV-D child support agency, can only enforce orders where a party has applied for services with the agency, or the Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) has made a referral to DCSS because the custodial parent and children receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Medicaid. A person may make application for services with DCSS at: https://services.georgia.gov/dhr/cspp/do/public/ApplyNow. The Family Support Registry does not have any legal authority to enforce child support orders or manage cases, and therefore cannot assist you. If you do not apply for services with DCSS, you may retain a private attorney to file any necessary actions for enforcement or modification of the child support.

What can go wrong if the FSR does not receive the child support information on the new or modified order?

If the FSR does not receive the FSR Registration Form and Income Deduction Order (IDO), containing the new/modified child support order information, prior to receiving a child support payment from the employer or the NCP, the money will:

Scenario 1: Not post to the unknown case on the DCSS/FSR database and will refund to the NCP; or

Scenario 2: Post to other cases belonging to the NCP, if one or more already exists on the DCSS/FSR database; or

Scenario 3: Will post to the existing case but any amounts received that exceed the old current support amount may refund to the NCP.

In any event, the NCP will not receive credit for the payment(s) on the new case or the new modified order until the new information is submitted to the FSR.

Take steps to avoid these situations: Always submit the FSR Registration Form and IDO to the Family Support Registry immediately prior to notifying the employer to begin withholding the child support from the NCP’s salary. Even though Georgia's income deduction law allows the employer time to establish income withholding from the NCP's salary, money may still reach the FSR prior to registration of the case on the database, and then not post correctly. This is especially true if the NCP already has an existing case registered on the child support database.

What will happen next and how will the custodial parent receive the child support payments?

Letters will be mailed to the custodial parent (CP) and the non-custodial parent (NCP) identified on the FSR Registration form. The letters will include information on how the CP will receive child support. Options for receipt of payments are by debit card or direct deposit. This first payment will also trigger notice to the DCSS debit card company to issue a debit card to the CP, unless the CP has already chosen direct deposit. It is very important that the CP maintain a current mailing address with DCSS to ensure receipt of the debit card and timely case information.

Visit this website for more information: http://ocss.dhr.georgia.gov/portal/site/DHS-OCSE/ .
From the left menu select “Services?-->Where to Send Payments.” Be sure to read information on this website about fees charged.

 

What are the FSR payment addresses?

Payments mailed to the FSR should be directed to one of three post office boxes provided below. Income Deduction payments from an employer use P. O. Box 1800.

  • Non-Custodial Parent:
    Family Support Registry
    P.O. Box 1600
    Carrollton, GA 30112-1600
  • Employer or Private Attorney:
    Family Support Registry
    P.O. Box 1800
    Carrollton, GA 30112-1800
  • Out of State Child Support Agency:
    Family Support Registry
    P.O. Box 1700
    Carrolton, GA 30112-1700

I’ve paid all my child support, but my employer won’t stop the deductions. What do I do now?

We have been advised by many people that once their current child support obligation has been fulfilled, their employer will not stop withholding money from their pay.

Unfortunately, most employers want a court order allowing them to stop withholding child support. The Georgia Commission on Child Support is aware of this problem, and is working toward a solution. Until then, you may want to use one of these suggestions.

You may file a motion with the court to terminate income withholding; the custodial parent must be served with process and given an opportunity to object to your motion. You will then have to have a hearing, at which time you present your evidence and get the court order for your employer.

However, if you and your children’s other parent can agree that you are finished paying current child support and that no arrearage exists, there is a form on our website that you can use to create your own order to present to the presiding judge in your county. You can find out which judge is presiding by calling the Clerk of Court. Once signed by a Judge and filed with the Clerk of Court, you can present this Consent Order to your employer to stop the income withholding.