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Illinois State Disbursement Unit
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Glossary of Terms

To find a term quickly, click on the first letter of the term in the list below.
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Absent Parent - Any responsible relative who is not living with the child(ren) and is legally responsible for providing financial support for the child(ren).

Adjustment - Any change made to the balance of an account.

Alleged Father (AF) - Person who has been named as the father of a child born out of wedlock (non-marital) and for whom paternity has not yet been established. Also known as a putative father.

Allocated Support - The amount of support specified by the order to each child by name, or an amount in equal proportion, specified for each child by HFS when support has been earmarked.

Arrearage - Total amount of the unpaid obligation owed by a responsible parent.

Automated Voice Response (AVR) System - An interactive system that will provide automated responses to caller's inquiries and provides the custodial and non-custodial parents with their current payment or disbursements information and frequently asked questions.

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Backup - Any documents mailed to the IL-SDU; also called resource documents. The backup is very important. Validators use the resource documents to find information needed to identify a specific child support case for processing.

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Case -A case on the SDU payment processing system is a collection of information about a child support order.

Case Number - Also known as a state FIPS / Docket or court case number. The Circuit Court Clerk assigns a unique identification number to each support order. The case number can be two, three, or four numbers followed by 1-2 letters followed by a series of numbers, (i.e. 99D001234 or 2001F000123 or 89FP1234 or 053P200101234). Case numbers issued by HFS begin with the letter "C."

Child - Refers to any child over or under age eighteen (18) who is, or is alleged to be, the beneficiary of a support order.

Child Support Enforcement Services (CSE) -The services provided to establish, modify, enforce and collect support in accordance with an approved state plan under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act.

Child Support or Child Support Obligation - An amount of money that a person is legally obligated to pay toward the expense of raising a child pursuant to the order of a court jurisdiction.

Clerk of the Circuit Court -Locally elected county officials whose responsibilities include the maintenance of court FIPS / Dockets and records, including child support matters. Until the passage of the SDU legislation, their duties included the receipt and disbursement of child support.

Clerk of Court Fee -As the clerk of the court is the official record keeper for all child support payments, they are allowed to charge the non-custodial parent a $36.00 annual processing fee. This $36.00 fee must be sent directly to the appropriate clerk.

Client -The IV-D client is the person responsible for a child's health or welfare and who has temporary or legal custody of a dependent child.

Confidentiality - Protecting the privacy of participants and their case records. It is a criminal offense to violate confidentiality.

Custodial Parent - See Client

Court Order - An order from a court of competent jurisdiction. A child support order obligates a responsible relative to submit periodic child support payments to designated parties.

Current Support -The ongoing amount required to be paid under a support order for the dependents of a Responsible Relative.

Customer Service (CS) -The unit that responds to inquiries from CPs, NCPs, Employers, HFS, county child support workers and other state government officials.

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Deferrals -Payments received by the SDU but not identified with a case during the initial attempt at validation. These usually reflect cases not in the system, insufficient or conflicting information sent by the employer.

Delinquency -The failure to pay court-ordered support when it is due.

Direct Deposit -Allows payees to receive child support disbursements electronically through direct deposit.

Disbursements -Money paid out to designated receiver.

Distribution -Distribution is the process of determining how a payment should be applied. In child support matters, distribution refers to ensuring the appropriate individual or agency receives the correct amount of payment.

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Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) -Illinois Public Act 91-0677, effective January 5, 2000, requires every employer with at least 250 employees to use EFT. Employers with fewer than 250 employees, but with at least 10 Income Withholding Notices, must also use EFT to pay all amounts withheld except for:
  • support orders providing only spousal maintenance with no child support obligations;
  • support orders entered in another state;
  • non IV-D support payments not being made through income withholding.
Employer Fee - Employers may still charge the non-custodial parent a maximum fee of $5.00 per month to process child support income withholding payments.

Enforcement - In matters of child support, the use of any legal remedy to collect current and/or past due child support from the responsible relative on the behalf of dependent children.

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Family Violence Indicator (FVI) -An indicator that is placed onto the IV-D system that denotes that the State has reasonable evidence of domestic violence or child abuse, and that disclosure of the case information could be harmful to the party or the child.

Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) - The federal identification number assigned to an employer.

Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) - A system of unique identifiers assigned to political subdivisions within the states and territories of the USA, for child support matters. The FIPS code indicates the county in which a case was established. It is five characters in length when indicating both the State and county codes. It is seven characters in length when indicating the State, county, and local codes. Also referred to as the County Code.

FIPS/Docket Number -A unique number assigned by the Circuit Clerk or the administrative unit to identify each support order.

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HFS - Healthcare and Family Services

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Illinois State Disbursement Unit (ILSDU) - Federal and state laws require employers to remit child support income withholding payments associated with Illinois orders to one central processing center. ILSDU is the statewide, centralized receipt and disbursement operation for processing child support collections. The mailing address of ILSDU is: Illinois State Disbursement Unit, P. O. Box 5921, Carol Stream, Illinois 60197-5921.

Income Withholding - The process whereby the support ordered is automatically withheld by a payer of income, usually an employer.

Income Withholding Order/Notice - Income Withholding Order/Notice is an order or other legal process, i.e. Notice of Delinquency, directed to an obligor's employer or other debtor, as defined by the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, the Non-Support of Spouse and Children Act, the Illinois Public Aid Code, and the Illinois Parentage Act of 1984, to withhold support from the income of the obligor.

Intercept - Collection of support obligations from sources outside the Child Support system, in which monies destined for the Responsible Relative are withheld for support payments.

Interstate Cases - Cases where the IV-D client lives in Illinois and the responsible relative lives in another state (initiating) or cases where the IV-D client lives in another state and the responsible relative lives in Illinois (responding).

IV-A - Title IV-A of the Social Security Act, the portion of Federal law covering the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program.

IV-A Agency - The agency responsible for the administration of that portion of the Federal law covering the public assistance program. In Illinois, it is Healthcare and Family Services (HFS).

IV-A Case Number - The unique identification number assigned to an IV-A case.

IV-D or IV-D Program - The child support program in accordance with the provisions of Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. The Division of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE) within Healthcare and Family Services.

IV-D Agency - The single and separate organizational unit in the State that has the responsibility for administering or supervising the administration of the IV-D Program. In Illinois, it is the Division of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE) within Healthcare and Family Services.

IV-D Case Number -The unique identifier assigned by KIDS to identify an IV-D case. See Case

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Key Information Delivery System (KIDS) - Data processing system used to process all IV-D cases in Illinois.

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Misapplied Payment - Child support payments that have been posted to the wrong account.

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Non-Custodial Parent - The term used to refer to the parent owing a duty of support. This term should be used to refer to the responsible relative, absent parent or obligor.

Non IV-D Cases - Cases, which Division of Child Support Enforcement Services is not responsible for providing services. No application completed for Division of Child Support Enforcement Services.

Non-sufficient Funds (NSF) - Term refers to child support payments returned by bank for insufficient funds.

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Obligation - The legal amount of support owed for the support of a child or children as ordered by a court or administrative procedure.

Obligee - The obligee is an individual to whom support is owed; a state or political subdivision to which support has not been adjudicated to be a parent of a child, or who is liable under a support order.

Obligor - The obligor is an individual or the estate of a decedent who owes support, alleged but has not been adjudicated to be a parent of a child, or who is liable under a support order.

Order - A direction of a magistrate or judge to a person, made or entered in writing and not included in a judgment.

Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) - The Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement, administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Order/Notice to Withhold Income for Child Support (also known as Income Withholding Notice) -A federal standardized form served on a payer of income that directs the payer (usually an employer) to automatically withhold from the non-custodial parent's income amounts specified for current and medical support, arrearage and past-due amounts as allowed by the Federal Consumer Credit Protection Act (15 U. S. Cl§ 1673(b)). The Income Withholding Notice is used in the court or administrative process for an intrastate or interstate IV-D obligation.

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Parentage - The state or condition of being a parent. Under the Illinois Parentage Act of 1984, the parent and child relationship, including support obligations, extends equally to every child and every parent regardless of the parents' marital status. Parentage is established in IV-D matters under this civil action. The Act also decriminalized paternity adjudication and allowed parentage to be established through consent and default.

Participant - A participant is any person on a case in the SDU payment processing system.

Participant Data - Information on a person in the IV-D program.

Pass Through -An amount, up to $50, is automatically forwarded to an active IV-D AFDC client, from current support received for a given month. This payment does not affect AFDC eligibility and may not be used to reduce the assistance payment level.

Paternity - See Parentage.

Payee - The person to whom funds, such as a current obligation, arrears or fees, are owed.

Payment - Refers to the funds received from the non-custodial parent (NCP). The payment can be check, money order, cash substitute, ACH, or wire transfer.

Payer - Any provider of income to an obligor (responsible relative).

Personal Identification Number (PIN) -Personal Identification Number or PIN is a unique 4-digit number assigned to you. By using your Social Security Number and PIN, you can access your disbursement information via the Automated Voice Response system, by calling Customer Service, or by visiting the Illinois State Disbursement Unit web site.

Personal Responsibility Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) -The Federal act passed in 1996 that mandates states to develop a statewide operation to serve as a central point for all child support collections and disbursements. PRWORA also required that the operation provide employers with the opportunity to remit a single payment to one location for multiple obligors across the state.

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Receipt Date -The date a support payment is considered to have been collected for purpose of distribution. Federal regulations require that the receipt date be the date the support payment is made to the Clerk of the Circuit Court, IV-D Agency, or other state, whichever is the earliest.

Recipient -A person who receives public assistance.

Redirect -This refers to payments which are forwarded to a Title IV-D client as amounts owed for current or past support. This term is also used to refer to letters, known as "redirect letters," sent to Clerks of the Circuit Court, responsible relatives, and employers, advising them to change the party to whom payments are forwarded because of a change in child support case status.

Refund -The amount sent to an NCP or Clerk of the Circuit Court when it is determined that an overpayment of support has occurred, the court has ordered the return of payments, or payments were misdirected to the IV-D agency or client.

Respondent -The person from whom action or relief is requested.

Responding State - The state to which a UIFSA referral is forwarded.

Responsible Relative (RR) - See Non-Custodial Parent.

Review and Adjustment - Review and adjustment refers to the two major phases involved in modification of a court order. The first phase looks at what the NCP would be ordered to pay now, and compares that amount to the existing support amount. Based on this review, a determination may be made that the current support order needs to be adjusted.

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Split Payment - Refers to account situations in which part of the support obligation is owed to one party and part to another.

State Disbursement Unit (SDU) - See Illinois State Disbursement Unit.

Support Obligation - The financial duty an NCP owes to his or her dependents, as set forth in a legally-valid court or administrative order for support. Includes the amount to be paid each period for current support, payment on arrearage, and payment for reimbursement of AFDC/Foster Care. May also include an obligation for medical support.

Support Order -Directive obligating an NCP to provide support payments, arrived at as a result of either the administrative process or the judicial process.

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TANF (Temporary Aid for Needy Families) -Time-limited services or benefits under Title IV-A. The program provides parents with job preparation, work and support services to help them become self-sufficient. Applicants for benefits are automatically referred to their State IV-D agency in order to establish paternity and child support from the non-custodial parent. This allows the State to recoup some of its public assistance costs from the non-custodial parent.

Title IV-D of the Social Security Act -The section of the Federal Social Security Act that requires each state to provide child support enforcement services. The HFS/DCSE administer the Title IV-D Program in Illinois.

Third Party - People and entities connected to a case indirectly from the outside. These include NCP employers, agencies and courts.

Third Party Payee - Caretaker, other than the client on the case, who receives any support on behalf of the child.

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Void and Reissue - The process of voiding and reissuing checks to the appropriate case.

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Withholding Date -The date that the payment was withheld from the employee's wages.

Wage Withholding -For DCSE, the automatic withholding of an employee's wages by the employer for submittal for payment of support obligations.

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