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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Hall, Lauren; Kim, Hae Jung; Passarella, Letitia; Born, Catherine
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    Federal law as well as Maryland law requires a quadrennial, case-level review of the application of quantitative child support guidelines when establishing or modifying support obligations. These reviews are meant to identify areas of policy or practice where enhancements might be needed. Most importantly, these reviews are intended to evaluate if the financial needs of children are being impartially and equitably addressed through consistent application of the guidelines. Child support is an important income source, perhaps especially for low-income families where its receipt can add as much as 20 percent to the income of single parents (Nicoli, Logan, Born, 2012). The significance of child support to the larger population and to local economies is evident from the fact that $26.5 billion in child support was collected nationally and distributed on behalf of more than 17 million children in 2010.

    Members of the Maryland General Assembly are well aware of the importance of child support in the lives of their constituents. They also understand the importance of the public...

    Federal law as well as Maryland law requires a quadrennial, case-level review of the application of quantitative child support guidelines when establishing or modifying support obligations. These reviews are meant to identify areas of policy or practice where enhancements might be needed. Most importantly, these reviews are intended to evaluate if the financial needs of children are being impartially and equitably addressed through consistent application of the guidelines. Child support is an important income source, perhaps especially for low-income families where its receipt can add as much as 20 percent to the income of single parents (Nicoli, Logan, Born, 2012). The significance of child support to the larger population and to local economies is evident from the fact that $26.5 billion in child support was collected nationally and distributed on behalf of more than 17 million children in 2010.

    Members of the Maryland General Assembly are well aware of the importance of child support in the lives of their constituents. They also understand the importance of the public child support program operated by the Child Support Enforcement Administration (CSEA) of the Department of Human Resources (DHR) in partnership with local child support programs, the judiciary, and local Departments of Social Services. Due to the legislature’s long-standing interest in the public child support program, it requires that a written report be submitted to it describing the methodology and findings of the mandatory, periodic case review projects.

    This report is in fulfillment of the required 2012 quadrennial legislative report. The report covers the calendar years of 2007 through 2010. The research described herein was carried out by the Family Welfare Research and Training Group at the University of Maryland, School of Social Work on behalf of CSEA-DHR, as have been all prior quadrennial reviews. Report findings are based on the review of court orders and their associated guidelines worksheets for a stratified, random sample of 5,340 Maryland child support cases with new or modified support orders between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2010. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Mead, Lawrence M.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2012

    How might work levels among low-income men be raised, as they were for welfare mothers in the 1990s? This study expands the relevant literature on both social policy and implementation. Low-skilled men owing child support and ex-offenders returning from prison are already supposed to work but often fail to do so. The reasons include both the recent fall in unskilled wages and the confusion of men’s lives. Existing work programs in child support and criminal justice appear promising, although evaluations are limited. A survey covering most states shows that half or more already have some men’s work programs, usually on a small scale. Field research in six states suggests the political and administrative factors that shape wider implementation of these programs. Work programs should preferably be mandatory, stress work over training, and be combined with improved wage subsidies. The federal government should provide more funding and evaluations. (author abstract)

    How might work levels among low-income men be raised, as they were for welfare mothers in the 1990s? This study expands the relevant literature on both social policy and implementation. Low-skilled men owing child support and ex-offenders returning from prison are already supposed to work but often fail to do so. The reasons include both the recent fall in unskilled wages and the confusion of men’s lives. Existing work programs in child support and criminal justice appear promising, although evaluations are limited. A survey covering most states shows that half or more already have some men’s work programs, usually on a small scale. Field research in six states suggests the political and administrative factors that shape wider implementation of these programs. Work programs should preferably be mandatory, stress work over training, and be combined with improved wage subsidies. The federal government should provide more funding and evaluations. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Ratliff, Pamela P.
    Reference Type: Thesis
    Year: 2012

    The purpose of this study was to investigate (a) non-custodial, low-income fathers' level of knowledge of child support enforcement policy, procedures, and rules; (b) their level of involvement in the family court system; and (c) the relationship between non-custodial, low-income fathers' knowledge of the procedures of the child support enforcement system and compliance with court child support orders. The investigation employed a descriptive-survey research design. The sample (n = 25) was randomly selected from a population of noncustodial, low-income fathers enrolled in a welfare-to-work training project in South Carolina. Data were collected from the sample using a valid and reliable survey titled Knowledge of Child Support Enforcement Policy and Procedures or KCSEPP. Data were analyzed to respond to seven quantitative research questions. The data showed that the level of knowledge fathers had about child support policies and procedures was generally low; and their level of involvement in the family court system, due to non-compliance with child support orders, revealed a high...

    The purpose of this study was to investigate (a) non-custodial, low-income fathers' level of knowledge of child support enforcement policy, procedures, and rules; (b) their level of involvement in the family court system; and (c) the relationship between non-custodial, low-income fathers' knowledge of the procedures of the child support enforcement system and compliance with court child support orders. The investigation employed a descriptive-survey research design. The sample (n = 25) was randomly selected from a population of noncustodial, low-income fathers enrolled in a welfare-to-work training project in South Carolina. Data were collected from the sample using a valid and reliable survey titled Knowledge of Child Support Enforcement Policy and Procedures or KCSEPP. Data were analyzed to respond to seven quantitative research questions. The data showed that the level of knowledge fathers had about child support policies and procedures was generally low; and their level of involvement in the family court system, due to non-compliance with child support orders, revealed a high degree of negative involvement. Results also revealed that there was no difference in the level of knowledge of child support enforcement policy and procedures for fathers who were in compliance with child support orders and those who were not in compliance. Ultimately, the study confirmed that educating fathers about child support policy and procedures is a strategy that should be explored further for its usefulness in informing non-custodial, low-income fathers' decision making regarding legal and financial obligations to their children. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Stieglitz, Ali; Johnson, Amy
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2001

    Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. (MPR), in collaboration with the Urban Institute, has examined what local communities in Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, and Oregon have done to improve the coordination of this response system. This report, funded by the Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, focuses specifically on the strategies that the child support and public assistance agencies in these sites have taken to improve the interagency coordination of information and services for victims of domestic violence with regard to the child support collection process, both for domestic violence victims who want exemption from this process and those who want to collect child support safely. Sometimes this coordination of effort extends to others, such as court personnel or staff from local domestic violence service organizations. The study's primary goal is to offer guidance for policymakers and agency staff in other states as they design and implement interagency strategies to help victims pursue child support safely. Given...

    Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. (MPR), in collaboration with the Urban Institute, has examined what local communities in Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, and Oregon have done to improve the coordination of this response system. This report, funded by the Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, focuses specifically on the strategies that the child support and public assistance agencies in these sites have taken to improve the interagency coordination of information and services for victims of domestic violence with regard to the child support collection process, both for domestic violence victims who want exemption from this process and those who want to collect child support safely. Sometimes this coordination of effort extends to others, such as court personnel or staff from local domestic violence service organizations. The study's primary goal is to offer guidance for policymakers and agency staff in other states as they design and implement interagency strategies to help victims pursue child support safely. Given its focused purpose, the study does not attempt to present a comprehensive analysis of child support enforcement policies, domestic violence issues, or the outcomes that resulted from the initiatives in our study sites. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Coley, Rebekah Levine; Schindler, Holly S.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2008

    Objective . This study assessed the supposition that fathers' parenting and economic contributions help to support maternal and family functioning. Design . Using longitudinal data from a representative sample of low-income families with young children (N = 402), semidifference models assessed whether fathers' parenting, cash, and in-kind contributions predicted maternal functioning (mothers' psychological distress and parenting stress) and family functioning (cognitive stimulation and family routines). Results . Increases in fathers' parenting contributions predicted declines in maternal psychological distress and parenting stress. Fathers' cash and in-kind contributions showed limited relations to maternal and family functioning. Interactions by fathers' residence status found few significant differences in links between resident and nonresident fathers. Conclusions . These results add empirical support to...

    Objective . This study assessed the supposition that fathers' parenting and economic contributions help to support maternal and family functioning. Design . Using longitudinal data from a representative sample of low-income families with young children (N = 402), semidifference models assessed whether fathers' parenting, cash, and in-kind contributions predicted maternal functioning (mothers' psychological distress and parenting stress) and family functioning (cognitive stimulation and family routines). Results . Increases in fathers' parenting contributions predicted declines in maternal psychological distress and parenting stress. Fathers' cash and in-kind contributions showed limited relations to maternal and family functioning. Interactions by fathers' residence status found few significant differences in links between resident and nonresident fathers. Conclusions . These results add empirical support to conceptual models delineating indirect pathways by which parental support may influence children. (author abstract)

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