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Contact Us For More Information 208.843.7362

385 Agency Road

PO Box 365

Lapwai, ID.

83540

Serving families who live or work on the Nez Perce Reservation.

Getting a Child Support Order

Nez Perce Tribal Court child support orders are signed by a judge ordering a parent to pay child support and provide medical coverage, if it is available through an employer of either parent.

If you do not have a child support order, CSEP can help establish an order for you. To begin the process, you must complete the application form and return to the CSEP office. Once CSEP receives your application, we will send you a letter requesting information from you and explaining what you must do next.

If you have an existing order then the rules of the original State apply. Please see applicable links below.

Legal Costs

There is no charge for services when utilizing services from the Nez Perce Tribe Child Support Enforcement Program.

Enforcing an Order

Tribal policy and procedures provides a number of enforcement tools used by CSEP when the non-custodial parent has not paid support in a timely manner. The focus is on securing payment in the most appropriate and respectful manner possible. The agency will ask the court to intervene only when administrative remedies do not work and/or the non-custodial parent does not cooperate.

Once a child support order exists, CSEP can help ensure it is followed. When a parent is behind in child support payments, the case worker will send a notification of hearing to the non-custodial parent prior to any action. If there is still no response, CSEP determines which of the following actions to use:

If money is owed, the State in which an order originated may also take action, such as driver and occupational license suspension.

What is a default judgement?

Default means "failure to act". In regards to child support enforcement, if you fail to appear in court, the judge usually grants a "default judgement". If you receive a notice to show cause, DO NOT IGNORE! Appear in court and present your side.

If the court judgement is ignored, will it go away?

NO. The order is effective from the date it is signed and until the order is modified or the child reaches 18 years old. Even after the child reaches 18, if you have arrears of back child support, you will still need to pay that past debt until it is gone.

How your child support is determined

Child support payment amount is determined by examining the income of both parties and then calculating according to guidelines set by law. The Nez Perce Tribe has adopted tribal income guidelines (Tribal Code §4-5-51 (c)) and utilize them for setting and modifying child support obligation amounts which are based on all relevant factors, including:

Non-cash payments called in-kind contribution are permitted under tribal code when agreed to by all parties and entered into court order.

In-kind contribution and values

Where do the child support payments go?

CSEP follows the guidelines established by the Nez Perce Tribe Executive Committee and Finance Department.

Child support payments are disbursed according to what is due on current support first, then to what is owed to past due amounts (arrears). The past due amount is paid to the custodial parent and then toward any State or Tribe to which assistance such as TANF or food stamps was received in lieu of child support.

Acceptance of Foreign Judgment or Full Faith and Credit

Anytime the Nez Perce Tribe CSEP office receives a request to enforce Child Support Order(s) from another jurisdiction, CSEP must first petition in Tribal Court to "Accept a Foreign Judgement" (Full Faith and Credit). "Foreign" orders are those orders that did not originate in our Tribal court. They can be orders that were issued by other tribal courts, state courts, or state administrative agencies.

When Tribal Court accepts a Foreign Judgment or Full Faith and Credit, it means that Tribal Court recognizes the foreign order to be valid and gives it the same affect as a child support order issued by our Tribal Court.

Under federal law, each state and tribe must enforce a child support order of another jurisdiction as if it were an order of it's own court. 28 U.S.C § 1738B. This process is called Full Faith and Credit. The federal law restricts the ability of the second jurisdiction from modifying a court order issued by the first jurisdiction (but not an administrative order).

Parents in Other States

When the non-custodial parent lives out of state or off the reservation, CSEP will transfer the case to the state of the non-custodial parent's residence or the state that has jurisdiction. Children need financial and emotional support from both parents, even when a parent lives in a different state or country.

Getting Another State's Help

CSEP determines when another state's help is needed. We will notify you if another state's child support agency needs you to complete forms or provide information. You do not need to communicate directly with the other state's child support agency, we will take care of that for you.

Once CSEP gathers the information, we send it to the other state's child support agency and they open a case as well.

Following Another State's Law and Policies

If the other parent lives or works in another state, that state's laws must be followed. Caseworkers in that state know and understand the laws and policies of their state. They also have better access to information, such as if the other parent changes jobs, receives worker's compensation, or even wins the lottery.

Involving Another State May Take More Time

Interstate cases often take more time than cases involving parents who live or work on the Nez Perce Reservation. When an out of state parent makes a payment, the payment is sent to the other state's child support agency, then forwarded to Nez Perce Tribe CSEP. We record the payment and send it to you. This process allows both agencies to keep accurate payment records.

How You Can Help

Please provide complete and accurate information. Let Nez Perce Tribe CSEP know if you have any information that may be helpful, such as where the other parent lives or works. We will forward the information to the other state.

Nez Perce Tribe Website

Click here to return to Tribal homepage

NPT Tribal Code

Child Support Codes

§4-5-50 to §4-5-70

Child Support Income Guidelines

NPT-CSEP Child Support Table

The CSEP Child Support Income Guideline table is used to assist in determining child support payment amounts based on the economic and employment conditions on the Nez Perce Reservation. In addition, CSEP utilizes the NPT pay scale to determine minimum wage. Since FY 15 (03/24/2015) the minimum wage has increased to $7.86.

NPT FY 2015 Pay Scale

NPT CSEP Guidlines

The CSEP Guidelines will provide guidance to Custodial and Non-Custodial parents in understanding and determining the amount of child support that may be ordered by the Tribal Court. The guidelines contribute to the standardization and fairness to all families of this Program. This is a guidance process with the final determination provided by legal court order. These Guidelines were approved by NPTEC Resolution 16-219 on March 8, 2016 and approved by the Federal Office of Child Support on June 9, 2016