- Child Support Services
- Complaint Resolution
Every Customer's Right to Complaint Resolution
If you have a complaint against a local child support agency or the Franchise Tax Board for any action or inaction regarding your child support case, you have the right to request complaint resolution from the local child support agency. You can make a complaint in writing by completing and submitting a complaint resolution form to your local child support agency or you can call the local child support agency directly.
Your request for complaint resolution must be made within 90 days from the date you knew, or should have known, about the subject of your complaint. The local child support agency has 30 days from the date it receives your complaint to give you a written resolution of your complaint. The local child support agency will contact you if it needs more information or time to resolve your complaint.
You can request a State Hearing after you have gone through the complaint resolution process.
You Have a Right to a State Hearing
If the local child support agency does not respond to you within 30 days after receiving your complaint, you have the right to request a State Hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. Your request for a State Hearing must be made within 90 days after you complained to the local child support agency.
If the local child support agency does respond to you within 30 days after receiving your complaint, and you are not satisfied with the local child support agency's complaint resolution or response, you have the right to request a State Hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. Your request for a State Hearing must be made within 90 days after you received the local child support agency's written response to your complaint.
You can request a State Hearing in writing by sending a Request for State Hearing (form SH001) to the State Hearing Office, or you can call the State Hearing Office at 866-289-4714.
The State Hearing Office will let you know the date, time, and place of your State Hearing and will provide an interpreter or disability accommodation for you at the hearing if you need one. Not all complaints can be heard at a State Hearing.
When Hearings Will Be Granted
State hearings will only be granted for the following issues:
- An application for child support has been denied or has not been acted upon within the required time frame
- The child support services case has been acted upon in violation of federal and state law or regulation, or Department of Child Support Services policy letter, including services for the establishment, modification, and enforcement of child support orders and child support accountings
- Child support collections have not been distributed, or have been distributed or disbursed incorrectly or the amount of child support arrears, as calculated by the local child support agency, is inaccurate
- The local child support agency's decision to close a child support case
When Hearings Will Not Be Granted
The following issues cannot be heard at a state hearing:
- Child support issues requiring a motion, order to show cause, or appeal in court
- A review of any court order for child support or child support arrears
- A court order for spousal support
- Child custody or visitation determinations
- Complaints of alleged discourteous treatment by a local child support agency employee, unless such conduct resulted in a hearable action or inaction
Every local child support agency has an Ombudsperson available to provide assistance regarding complaint resolution or State Hearing.
The Ombudsperson can help you make your complaint with the local child support agency, or request a State Hearing from the State Hearing Office.
The Ombudsperson can help you obtain information regarding your complaint to help you prepare for your State Hearing.
The Ombudsperson cannot be your representative and will not give you legal advice.