Washington State Child Custody Statistics & Facts

Posted on Feb 07, 2014

Recently, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) issued a new report about child support statistics entitled, Child Support: An Overview of Census Bureau Data on Recipients. CRS works as a think tank for the United States Congress and is charged with providing in-depth, objective, and accurate information to our legislators.

11 Key Findings of This Report

2011 is the latest year for which complete information about child support statistics is available. According to the CRS report:

  • About 14.4 million parents had custody of children under the age of 21 while the other parent resided elsewhere.
  • Approximately half of custodial parents had child support orders requiring the other parent to provide child support for their children.
  • The amount of child support received by parents was approximately $23.6 billion.
  • Only 38 percent of the custodial parents with child support orders received the full amount of child support owed to them.
  • The average yearly child support payment received by custodial mothers was $5,160. For custodial fathers it was $4,433.
  • When compared to 1993 data, there is slightly less aggregate child support awarded, but there is more child support that is actually being paid.
  • 82 percent of custodial parents were mothers.
  • 35 percent of custodial parents were never married, 33 percent were divorced, and 18 percent were still married.
  • 85 percent of custodial parents had a high school degree and 17 percent had at least a bachelor’s degree.
  • 50 percent of custodial parents worked full time year round.
  • 29 percent of custodial parent families were below the poverty line and 39 percent received some form of government assistance.

Our Seattle child support lawyers understand the importance of child support and encourage all parents to find out more about Washington child support laws so that they can make the decisions that are in the best interest of their children.

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