Child Support in Illinois

Unlike other states, all child support services are free in Illinois. Still, applicants are referred to as customers, rather than clients on the Illinois Child Support website. The purpose of the site is to provide financial and emotional support to children from both parents.

How to Apply for Illinois Child Support Services

Anyone can apply for social assistance in Illinois and it offers assistance to children living both in Illinois and out of state. You also do not have to be on government assistance to benefit from the Illinois CSS programs.
To apply you can go to the Illinois Child support website and download the appropriate forms at or you can call your local office and ask or a form to be sent to you so you can complete it and mail it back.

How Illinois CSS works

Illinois Child Support Services tries to locate non-custodial parents who owe custody and they can do so by withholding income at the employer level. They also have a registry of newly hired employees in the state so that when a new employee I identified an Income Withholding Notice is sent and the wages of the parent are withheld until the court order is honored. All employers must use the federal New Hire Reporting program so that parents not paying child support can be tracked down.

The Illinois CSS has many different methods of collecting support including withholding unemployment insurance benefits, placing liens on property, suspending the driver’s license, denying a passport and freezing bank accounts.
Non-custodial parents may be asked to attend a hearing that is conducted by the department or a judge in court that helps establish the circumstances that led to the birth of the child. You might also be asked questions about the number of children you parented as well as your income, employment, insurance and living expenses.

It is important that if you have an active case that you do not send a second request unless you are asking for enforcement from a different non-custodial parent. Reviews of cases can take several months.

If you are going through a divorce and want to change your name then you need to fill out specific forms and prove a great deal of information including a copy of your driver’s license or state I.D., your name and Social Security number, your old address, your new street address, your phone numbers and your signature on a form that confirms the date you will being receiving mail at your new address.

You can also find all kinds of information about the application and collection process on the FAQs section of the Illinois Child Support website at