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Child Support Investigative Specialist

Salary: $19.09-$23.31 hourly / $3,320-$4,054 monthly / Range: 5246

DEFINITION: Under general direction, conducts investigations relating to the non-payment or establishment of child support; serves process in difficult child support cases; and performs related duties as required.

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS: Child Support (CS) Investigative Specialist is a journey-level, paraprofessional classification. Incumbents report to and receive their assignments from a Child Support Manager. CS Investigative Specialists are responsible for conducting the more complex and time-intensive office investigations as well as occasional field investigations.

CS Investigative Specialist is distinguished from Child Support Officer in that CS Officers perform routine or limited office investigations as part of their regular assignments to locate absent parents, establish paternity, and enforce child support orders. CS Investigative Specialist is also distinguished from Investigative Assistant in that CS Investigative Specialists are responsible for serving process in the most difficult cases requiring enhanced investigative or interpersonal skills, while Investigative Assistants in the Child Support Services Department are responsible for serving process in routine cases.

CS Investigative Specialist is further distinguished from Criminal Investigator in that CS Investigative Specialists are not sworn peace officers and cannot make arrests, serve search warrants, or carry firearms.


1. Conducts office and occasional field investigations into the location and/or financial lifestyle of non-custodial parents; pursues the location of non-custodial parents and their potential assets using a variety of methods, including skiptracing, accessing computer databases, public records, credit bureaus, and banking records; and evaluates the potential of success for both seizure and sale of non-custodial parents' assets to meet child support obligations.
2. Conducts telephone and in-person interviews with custodial and non-custodial parents, current or past employers, relatives, acquaintances, and other witnesses to ascertain and verify information concerning support obligations; analyzes information gathered; prepares written reports using personal computers; and makes recommendations for action to child support staff.
3. Serves civil papers and subpoenas in connection with difficult child support cases; prepares affidavits related to service of civil papers; reports critical information to and coordinates investigations with child support staff, attorneys, and law enforcement officers; and testifies in court regarding actions taken to locate persons for service or regarding their child support obligations.
4. Takes actions, including making phone calls and preparing written correspondence, to collect payment on non-sufficient fund checks received by the department as payment for child support; maintains records of all cases assigned for investigation; and may be assigned various related duties in ongoing child support cases.


1. Two years of investigative experience that involved skiptracing or searching for assets; or,
2. two years of experience equivalent to Child Support Officer II with the County of Santa Barbara; or,
3. a combination of training, education, and experience that is equivalent to one of the employment standards listed above and that provides the required knowledge and abilities.

Additional Requirements: Possession of a valid California Class C Driver's License is required. Occasional evening or weekend work may be required.

Knowledge of: investigative procedures and techniques including skiptracing; sources used to locate individuals or financial assets; effective and assertive interviewing techniques; basic arithmetic; and English grammar and usage.

Ability to: learn, interpret, and apply federal, state, and local laws, rules, and regulations concerning the establishment and enforcement of child support orders; read, understand, interpret, and explain laws, rules, and regulations; conduct effective interviews; elicit information from hostile and/or uncooperative individuals; communicate with and explain technical information to people from a wide range of educational, cultural, and financial backgrounds; evaluate situations and select the appropriate course of action; trace and locate missing persons and assets; learn about a variety of financial instruments; evaluate financial statements; gather, summarize, and analyze data; prepare clear and comprehensive reports; establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted during the performance of duties; learn and follow courtroom etiquette and procedures; maintain fairness, objectivity, and confidentiality; represent the County with tact and diplomacy; set priorities and adjust to workload changes; and use a keyboard and operate a personal computer.

Desirable Qualifications: Knowledge of child support collection operations.

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