DHS renames outreach program for child support

January 5, 2016

ATLANTA – The Department of Human Services (DHS) Problem Solving Court program has a new name and the agency plans to assist more parents who are struggling to support their children in 2016.

The Problem Solving Court program, now known as Parental Accountability Court, seeks to reduce the number of Georgians who are incarcerated for nonpayment of child support by helping parents eliminate barriers to financially supporting their children.

Through judicial oversight and intense one-on-one case management, Parental Accountability Courts across the state work to address underlying issues that keep parents from fulfilling their legal child support obligations. Program coordinators connect parents with resources that will make them employable, help them retain a job and consistently pay their child support obligations.

The program operates in 21 judicial circuits across the state and is administered in partnership with the Council of Superior Court Judges of Georgia and the Department’s Division of Child Support Services.

“Parental Accountability Court is about providing people with second chances and empowering them to take the reins and change the courses of their lives,” said DHS Commissioner Robyn A. Crittenden. “With the support of Superior Court judges, we are able to hold parents accountable for their obligations while also helping them to overcome issues that keep them from being able to provide for their children.”

Parental Accountability Court programs have helped more than 2,700 Georgians who were chronic nonpayers of child support come into compliance with their court orders and provide consistent financial support to their children. The program has saved Georgians $10 million in incarceration costs since its inception in 2012.

“We decided to change the name of the program to Parental Accountability Court, because the name should reflect the purpose of our outreach efforts,” said DHS Director of Child Support Services Tanguler Gray. “It is important to be a resource to parents who are trying to support their children while also holding them accountable to their obligations.”

Currently, the program operates in the following judicial circuits: Coweta, Northeastern, Augusta, Appalachian, Atlanta, Stone Mountain, Flint, Pataula, Alcovy, Mountain, Macon, Enotah, Towaliga, Rockdale, Southwestern, Dublin, Gwinnett, Northern, Dougherty, Tallapoosa, Ocmulgee South and Ocmulgee North.

For more information on the Parental Accountability Court program and other outreach programs within DHS Division of Child Support Services, please visit www.dcss.dhs.georgia.gov or call 1-844-MYGADHS or 1-844-694-2347.

About the Problem Solving Court subcommittee of the Accountability Court Committee of the Council of Superior Court Judges

The Parental Accountability Court program operates in 21 judicial circuits across the state and is administered by the Department’s Division of Child Support Services in partnership with the Problem Solving Court subcommittee of the Accountability Court Committee of the Council of Superior Court Judges.  The subcommittee is chaired by Judge Brian Amero of the Flint Judicial Circuit and co-chaired by Judge Chan Caudell of the Mountain Judicial Circuit.

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