Incoming payments (collections) are applied in a predetermined order (hierarchy). "Hierarchy" means a set of rules with higher or lower priorities. The allocation of monies is based on the type of money received from the obligor, employer, lump sum, federal or state tax refunds, unemployment benefits, workers compensation, pensions, etc. How this money can be applied is determined by the source of the money and regulated by state or federally mandated rules and regulations.
For the most part, current child support and child support arrears are paid before other obligations. Spousal support and associated arrears are paid next. Medical orders usually come next. After all of the above are paid, other obligations are paid such as paternity testing fee, attorney fees, clothing and day care costs or other special payments. Finally, current and past administrative fees are paid.