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Riverside County Department of Child Support Services
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Parents & Relatives: The Summons and Complaint

The court process begins when our office files a Summons and Complaint with the court to get a child support order. The Summons and Complaint includes:

  • Information about the child's birth and paternity,
  • Amount of child support requested,
  • Address and telephone number of the court, and
  • Address and telephone number of our office.
The Summons and Complaint and a blank Answer are delivered to the parent from whom child support is sought. This is done within 90 days of locating the parent and is called "service of process".

The person served a Summons and Complaint must fill out and file the Answer within 30 days. If the person served does not respond in writing within 30 days, the court will set child support with the information it has. A parent served a Summons and Complaint should call or visit our office or the Family Law Facilitator to talk about the case.

Our office uses the same child support guidelines the court uses. If the noncustodial parent agrees to pay the guidelines amount of child support, an agreement or stipulation is prepared. The court usually approves this agreement without requiring the noncustodial parent to come to court.

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