Office of Child Support Hearings
NOTICE TO HEARING PARTICIPANTS
Beginning May 1, 2022, hearings are now being conducted in-person at the location in your hearing notice, unless you request to appear at the hearing by telephone (SEE FORMS AND REQUESTS). For continued safety, it is recommended that all hearing participants wear a mask during the in-person proceedings. Only hearing participants and their representatives will be allowed into the hearings rooms. Sec. 5-34-10(7), Hawaii Administrative Rules.
Neighbor Islands: Please note that the Office of Child Support Hearings (OCSH) is located on Oahu. Hearings Officers do not travel to neighbor island hearing locations where some hearings are scheduled. Participants on neighbor islands come in-person to the hearing location at the Child Support Enforcement Agency, and the Hearing Officer conducts the hearing by telephone conference call from Oahu.
If you have any questions or need assistance, please call the Office of Child Support Hearings (OCSH) at (808) 692-7110.
OCSH understands that this may be inconvenient, but the health, safety, and security of participants is a priority. OCSH appreciates your understanding and patience.
The mission of the Office of Child Support Hearings (OCSH) is to resolve child support disputes fairly, impartially, and expeditiously. This is accomplished by child support hearings officers through an administrative hearings process. Orders issued by hearings officers establish, modify, terminate, and enforce child support obligations statewide. Orders may also include child support arrears, debt owed to the State for periods when the child and/or children received benefits from the State, and in certain cases, spousal support arrears. Hearings officers may also confirm, modify, and enforce out-of-state orders brought under the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act. Orders issued by hearings officers are filed with the family court without further review, and have the same force and effect as orders issued by family court judges.
All cases handled by OCSH are initiated through the Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA), which is a separate division of the department. If there is a request for hearing in an action initiated by CSEA, the case is set by CSEA for an administrative hearing with OCSH. Hearings are conducted pursuant to Hawaii Revised Statues Chapters 91 and 576E; Hawaii Administrative Rules, Title 5, Subtitle 3, Chapter 34; and the Hawaii Child Support Guidelines.
Difference Between OCSH and Court Proceedings
OCSH proceedings are an alternative to the Family Court for child support only. Examples of ways that an OCSH proceeding differs from a Family Court proceeding include:
- OCSH only addresses child support. Disputes such as custody and visitation may need to be addressed in the Family Court.
- OCSH only receives cases processed through the CSEA.
- OCSH does not have to apply rules of evidence and procedure as strictly as the Family Courts.
- It is more common for attorneys to represent parties in Family Court.
- Complex cases may be better suited for Family Court as the expedited OCSH hearings process does not have the same procedural rules as the Family Courts.
- OCSH does not charge a fee for services while the Family Courts may have a filing fee.
For additional general information, the parties can review material that has been provided by OCSH at general information classes for hearing participants: General Information for Administrative Child Support Hearings Also, OCSH may be contacted by telephone, facsimile, or mail using the contact information provided on this site.