This chapter contains the following sections:
Every child has a right to financial and emotional support from both parents. The first step in the child support process is to determine if paternity is an issue. In Wyoming, paternity establishment consists of forming a legal relationship between a man and a child through a voluntary acknowledgment process or court order.
Once paternity is established, both parents have a legal obligation to provide financial and medical support for their child. A child support order will establish a specific dollar amount for financial support of the child and include medical language to provide for the medical needs of the child.
No Establishment of a Child Support Order
The Wyoming CSP will not pursue a support order against a parent when the parent’s only source of income is Supplemental Security Income (SSI). However, the district shall proceed in establishing paternity if at issue prior to closing the case unless the case meets the criteria for closure as defined in Chapter 8.1 - Introduction to Establishment.
In order to ensure the best possible service to the customers within the Wyoming CSE Program, the federal OCSE established certain minimum timeframes by which actions within the child support program should take place. Below are the federal guidelines and timeframes for this chapter.
Within 90 days of locating an alleged father or non-custodial parent, the Wyoming CSE Program shall:
Establish an order for support (and paternity, if necessary); or
Complete service of process to establish support; or
Document unsuccessful attempts to serve process to establish support. (45 CFR 303.4(d))
To comply with this federal regulation through self-assessment, a state shall meet this requirement for seventy-five percent (75%) of all its open cases. (45 CFR 305.63(c)(2) and 45 CFR 308.2(b))
Additionally, federal regulations require the Wyoming CSE Program to process establishment cases, either administratively or judicially, within the following prescribed time frames. From the date of service of process, support shall be established:
For seventy-five percent (75%) of the cases within six (6) months (180 days); and
For ninety percent (90%) of the cases within twelve (12) months (365 days). (45 CFR 303.101(b)(2)(i))
Medical Support Establishment
Finally, federal regulations require the Wyoming CSE Program to petition the court to include a private health insurance provision that is accessible and reasonable in cost. (45 CFR 303.31(b)(1)) If private health insurance is not available at the time the order is established, petition the court to include a cash medical provision until such time as private health insurance is available that is accessible and reasonable. (45 CFR 303.31(b)(2))
To comply with this federal regulation through self assessment, Wyoming shall meet this requirement for seventy-five percent (75%) of all its open cases. (45 CFR 305.63(c)(5) and 45 308.2(e)(1))
Under certain circumstances, a IV-D child support case may be closed as long as it meets all of the requirements outlined in the federal regulations (45 CFR 303.11). The possible case closures based upon establishment and/or paternity are:
The alleged father is deceased and no further action can be taken ((b)(2)).
Paternity cannot be established because:
o The child is at least 18 years old and action to establish paternity is barred by a statute of limitations ((b)(3)(i));
o A genetic test or court order has excluded the alleged father ((b)(3)(ii));
o The IV-D agency determined that it would not be in the best interest of the child to establish paternity ((b)(3)(iii)); or
o The identity of the alleged father is unknown and cannot be identified through diligent efforts ((b)(3)(iv)).
To comply with this federal regulation through self-assessment, a state shall meet this requirement for ninety percent (90%) of all its open cases. (45 CFR 305.63(b)(2) and 45 CFR 308.2(a))
The federal incentive funding system to states includes two measures to track the success of states in establishing paternity and support orders. The following provides a brief description of each establishment federal incentive measure.
Paternity Establishment Formulas:
Within a fiscal year, paternity shall be established for ninety percent (90%) of children born out of wedlock for a state to receive the maximum incentive. States may choose one of two methods to calculate paternity – IV-D Paternity Establishment Percentage (PEP) or Statewide PEP. Effective October 1, 2012, Wyoming utilizes the IV-D Paternity Establishment Percentage (PEP).
Total # of children born out of wedlock in the state, for whom paternity was
established or acknowledged during the fiscal year
Total # of children born out of wedlock during the preceding fiscal year
Total # of children in IV-D caseload in the fiscal year born out of wedlock
with paternity established or acknowledged
Total # of children in IV-D caseload as of the end of the preceding fiscal
year who were born out of wedlock
Note: If the paternity establishment rate for a state is below ninety percent (90%), the rate shall increase by 2% on a yearly basis until the rate reaches ninety percent (90%) or the state may be penalized by the federal government.
Order Establishment Formula
In order to maximize the incentive attached to the order establishment measure, a state shall establish support orders for more than 80% of its caseload. The federal incentive measure formula for support order establishment is as follows:
Number of IV-D cases with support orders during the fiscal year
Total number of IV-D cases during fiscal year
Last Revised Date
July 1, 2014