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The legal and practical issues surrounding child support obligations have enormous impact on families in the child welfare system. Unfortunately, these issues are often ignored, overlooked, or misunderstood. A much-needed effort to engage nonresident fathers in the child welfare system is underway, but those efforts will often be derailed if child support is not properly addressed. This article sheds light on the legal and policy concerns regarding child support enforcement in child protection cases and provides legal strategies for advocates to address those concerns. While primarily aimed at advocates for nonresident fathers, this article should also benefit advocates for custodial parents and for children as child support issues affect all parties in the child welfare system.



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