The federal government became involved with child support in 1935 when it established Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) under the Social Security Act, 1935 to allow communities to be financially responsible for children whose parents had died or had deserted them. (Lieberman, 1986). The Child Support and Establishment of Paternity Act (1975) created title IV-D of the Social Security Act (PL93-647), made the Department of Health and Human Services responsible for administering the Child Support Enforcement Program, and created the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement. Title IV-D required all states to: 1) Establish a parent locator service, 2) Establish paternity, 3) Obtain court orders of support and, 4) Enforce child support orders, and 5) Make services available to AFDC and non-AFDC families (Lieberman, 1986). Services to non-AFDC families were intended to be a preventative measure against welfare dependency. It was felt that assisting them to obtain child support would prevent them from later having to apply for AFDC.

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