Information for Parents
The Office of Child Support Services (OCSS) puts children first by helping both parents provide for the economic and social well-being, health, and stability of their children. The child support program is among the most effective anti-poverty programs in the country, and in New York City alone, the program keeps tens of thousands of low-income families from falling into poverty each year.
Over the years, the child support program has evolved from a system focused on recovering the costs of cash assistance to one that recognizes that having both parents involved in a child's life can bring the child a wide range of benefits.
Many of us at OCSS are parents and would like to share some of the tools and references we feel are helpful to other parents.
- Parent's Handbook
- How to Serve Legal Papers/Summons for Family Court in New York City
- Tips for Supervising Kids
- Parenting Plan Agreement
- Parenting plans are a way for parents to decide on how time is shared with the child and how decisions are made. Having a written plan that both parents agree on has the following benefits:
- The child will know what to expect, which leads to feeling stable and secure.
- Parents can plan their lives ahead by simply knowing the child's schedule.
- Both parents can be consistently involved in the child's life, which is good for growth and development.
- Children are more likely to thrive when parents work together.
- Attached is a parenting plan form for you and the other parent to complete and keep for your records. If you would like help getting started, contact OCSS by emailing email@example.com. We offer free or low-cost mediation services that can assist you through the process. By entering into a parenting plan, you will be joining thousands of other parents across the country in planning for your children. Download the agreement.
- Parent University (free courses hosted by NYC Department of Education for parents)
- NYC Department of Youth & Community Development (DYCD) Fatherhood Initiative (programs that encourage fathers to become personally involved with their children)
- Growing Up NYC (official NYC resource for children's programs and activities)
- IDNYC (free family activities)
- Talk to Your Baby (NYC Department of Health)
- ThriveNYC (Mayor's Office of ThriveNYC promotes mental health for all New Yorkers)
- Resources for Families Coping Through COVID (NYC Administration of Children's Services)
- Vroom (boost your child's learning)
- New York Public Library (Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island)
- Brooklyn Public Library
- Queens Public Library
- Co-Parenting in Child Support Programs
- National Responsible Fatherhood Clearninghouse (Parent help and other services for fathers)
- NYS Department of Mental Health: Parenting Resources
- NYC 311 Parenting Support resources
- NYS Parent Portal
- NYS Parent Guide
- NYS Program Parent Resource Center (Family Peer Support Services (FPSS) are an array of formal and informal services and supports provided to families raising a child who is experiencing social, emotional, developmental, substance use and/or behavioral challenges in their home, school, placement, or community.)
- NY Connects (trusted place to go for free, unbiased information about long term services and supports in New York State for people of all ages or with any type of disability.)
- NYC Department of Education Special Education Family Resources