Collection Policies for the Department of Child Support Enforcement in Washington State

by Wayne Thomas
The state can intercept tax refunds to cover outstanding child support amounts.

The state can intercept tax refunds to cover outstanding child support amounts.

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The State of Washington places a high priority on making sure that children have adequate support from both parents after a divorce. If a parent who has been ordered to pay child support fails to keep current on his obligation, the state has several methods it can use to obtain payment.

Enforcement Options

The Washington Department of Child Support routinely uses wage-withholding to collect past-due child support. The state requires your employer to deduct the specified amounts from your paycheck. The department can also put a liens on your real estate and personal property, which can restrict your ability to sell these assets. Additional policies the department uses include direct withholding from your accounts at financial institutions such as banks, and intercepting federal and state tax returns.