How L.A. County Made Collecting Child Support Less Punitive
LLast year, Los Angeles County collected half a billion dollars in child-support payments on behalf of local families, many of whom rely on that money to make ends meet. But collection, especially at that scale, is not easy.
In California, child-support payments go through an entity called the State Disbursement Unit (SDU). Payments are recorded into a system accessible by local child-support agencies, which are responsible for monitoring and enforcing compliance. Historically, child-support case workers had access to a limited set of punitive measures when parents were noncompliant — confiscated vehicles or driver’s licenses, garnished wages, or, in extreme cases, jail time.
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