Reduce your arrears to a judgment to collect back child support.  If you have child support arrears and want to begin to collect them by going beyond the remedies that Family Court and Child Support Enforcement Agencies offer you, the first step will be to get your judgment for your back child support.

There are two ways to do this.  It can be done through your child support agency or directly through the courts.  This how-to will address the steps for going through your CSE agency.  Once you have your judgment in hand, you can begin to avail yourself of the remedies to collect your back support located within our Document Library.

Here are the steps:

  1.  If you are typically able to reach your child support caseworker either right away over the phone or within a matter of days after leaving a message, the easiest thing to do will be to contact her/him and request that your arrears be “reduced to a judgment”.  You cannot employ any of the remedies in this Document Library without having a judgment.
  2. If you are able to reach your caseworker and they indicate that they will take the necessary steps to provide you with your judgment, be sure to log everything into your log book, then regardless of what they said, send the letter, “Reduce Your Arrears to a Judgment” via CSE, located in the Document Library.
  3. Download the letter from the Document Library.
  4. You will need to complete the letter by filling in the total amount of your arrears, any interest due, information on any modifications and the dates of when your arrears began to accumulate.  If you do not have this information, you will need to obtain it prior to completing the letter.
  5. Complete the letter.  See a sample of the letter in our Sample Letters/Forms/Language section.
  6. Send the letter to your caseworker by regular mail and certified mail, return receipt.  In some areas child support caseworkers have email addresses and supply them to their clients.  If your caseworker can provide you with an email address, send your letter to him or her there as well.  It is very easy for mail to get lost when traveling by snail mail or to simply say that it was not received or that it was received at a date later than it actually arrived.  You want to have proof of everything so that you can follow up.
  7. Allow two weeks after the receipt of the letter at the CSE agency and then follow up if you do not yet have your judgment.
  8. If you are lucky enough to speak with your caseworker or anyone at CSE, ask them when you should receive your judgment and then follow up at that time.

Once you have gone through the process to reduce your arrears to a judgment to collect back support, you can then move on to your next step.