Medical: Washington State Division of Child Support
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Division of Child Support

Medical Support

Will DCS establish and enforce medical support?

How does DCS enforce medical support?


Will DCS establish and enforce medical support?

When DCS establishes a support order, DCS always includes a medical support provision requiring the non-custodial parent and custodial parent to provide medical insurance when available through an employer or union.

  • If you have a support order with a medical support provision, DCS may enforce medical support along with child support. You must apply for DCS services if you want DCS to enforce the other parent's medical support obligation.

  • If your support order does not require medical support, DCS may be able to help you get that order modified to include an insurance requirement. Please note: A request to add a requirement for the custodial parent to provide health insurance coverage, or to add a provision in the order to include the custodial parent's share of medical expenses, is not by itself a sufficient basis for modification of the order.
DCS may collect unreimbursed medical expenses that meet certain threshold and time limit requirements. DCS does not collect unreimbursed medical expenses owed to a third party.

How does DCS enforce medical support?

DCS sends the obligated parent's employer or union a National Medical Support Notice. The Notice tells the employer:

To enroll the child in a health plan available to the obligated parent.

The maximum amount the obligated parent can pay for the children's medical insurance under the provisions of the support order.

If the cost of the medical premium exceeds the amount on the Notice, the employer cannot enroll the child. The employer has 20 business days to respond to DCS and forward Part B of the Notice to the Plan Administrator. When DCS receives information about the medical plan, DCS notifies the other parent.

If medical insurance is available, it may require the obligated parent to enroll in the plan in addition to enrolling the child. Under certain circumstances, DCS can require the obligated parent to enroll in the plan.