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Pennsylvania Laws

Laws & Legislation

The IV-D program is grounded in both federal and state statutes as well as judicial rules and procedures. The Bureau of Child Support Enforcement (BCSE) within the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) is the single state agency charged with administering the IV- D program in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The federal statutory basis for the program is U.S. Public Law 93-647, Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. The state statutory basis is in Title 23 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Annotated (23 Pa. C.S.A.).

The policies and procedures that govern most aspects of the child support program in Pennsylvania are the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) in 45 CFR, Parts 232 and 301 to 308; Chapter 55 of the Pennsylvania Code; and the Pennsylvania Rules of Court, Actions for Support in the Rules of Civil Procedure, 42 Pa. C.S.A. Rule 1910 et seq. Additionally, existing policies and procedures may be affected by case law as well as court and judicial proceedings.

The Title IV-D Child Support Enforcement Program was created in 1975 to establish uniform procedures and rules for providing child support enforcement services nationally. Pennsylvania, however, has a tradition of providing child support services that dates back to 1937, well before the creation of the IV-D program.

The Department of Public Welfare, Bureau of Child Support Enforcement (BCSE), administers Pennsylvania’s Child Support Enforcement Program through Cooperative Agreements with the 67 county Courts of Common Pleas. The Domestic Relations Sections (DRSs) of the Courts of Common Pleas provide child support services at the local level. The DRSs establish paternity and child support orders, and enforce support obligations for approximately 650,000 Pennsylvania families. To collect unpaid support from a noncustodial parent, a DRS may attach the person’s income, suspend a driver’s license, seize a bank account or other financial assets, intercept a Federal or State income tax refund, intercept lottery winnings, and report arrears to consumer credit reporting agencies. The Pennsylvania Title IV-D Child Support Enforcement Program is based on Federal and State statutes as well as Pennsylvania Supreme Court rules and procedures. The Federal statutory basis for the program is U.S. Public Law 93-647, Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, as amended. The State statutory basis is in Title 23 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes (23 Pa. C.S.).


The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Cites:
45 CFR 303.6 and 303.100

The Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes (Pa. C.S.A.)
23 Pa. C.S.A. §4302
23 Pa. C.S.A. §4305
23 Pa. C.S.A. §4348

The Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure (Pa. R.C.P.)
Pa RCP 1910.21

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