Child support

MNPrairie works to make sure that children get the support they need.

MNPrairie can help to locate parents; establish parentage; and set and enforce court orders for child support, medical support and child care support.

Child support is the contribution that non-custodial parents make to ensure that their children have adequate care, living expenses and medical support. All of Minnesota’s 87 counties provide child support services, regardless of families’ socioeconomic status.

MNPrairie provides four primary child support services to residents and people who have been issued a court order in Dodge, Steele or Waseca counties.

  • Establishing paternity, including coordinating genetic testing
  • Establishing court orders to pay child support.
  • Collecting child support and enforcing court orders
  • Helping families to modify court orders

We do not provide legal advice or counsel, establish custody or parenting time, enforce spousal maintenance, or oversee the collection of unpaid bills. We also do not provide assistance with a legal separation or divorce.

Minnesota District Courts
Minnesota Child Support Online
Child Support ezDocs

MNPrairie in 2018

  • 3,728 child support cases
  • 11,870 clients, including over 4,000 children
  • $10.8 million in child support collected. Statewide, Minnesota counties collected about $446 million in child support in 2018.
  • About 93 percent of MNPrairie's cases are under a court order.  MNPrairie has a 77 percent collection rate, which exceeds the state average of 74%. 

Families in the child support system

Within the MNPrairie system, 2,871 children were born to unmarried parents.  Paternity has been established for more than 107 percent of them.

Most of the families - nearly 90 percent - do not receive public assistance.  About 41 percent of current child support recipients are former public assistance clients.  In many cases, the child support payment (averaging $315 a month per family) helps families maintain self sufficiency.