5 CFR 179.303 - General.
(a) The Director or his or her designee, after attempting to collect a debt from a person under section 3(a) of the Federal Claims Collection Act of 1966, as amended (31 U.S.C. 3711(a)), may collect the debt by administrative offset subject to the following:
(1) The debt is certain in amount; and
(2) It is in the best interest of the United States to collect the debt by administrative offset because it is less costly and speeds payment of the debt;
(b) The Director, or his or her designee, may initiate administrative offset with regard to debts owed by a person to another agency of the United States Government, upon receipt of a request from the head of another agency, or his or her designee, and a certification that the debt exists and that the person has been afforded the necessary due process rights.
(c) The Director, or his or her designee, may request another agency that holds funds payable to an OPM debtor to offset the debt against the funds held and will provide certification that:
(1) The debt exists; and
(2) The person has been afforded the necessary due process rights.
(d) If the 6-year period for bringing action on a debt provided in 28 U.S.C. 2415 has expired, then administrative offset may be used to collect the debt only if the costs of bringing such action are likely to be less than the amount of the debt.
(e) No collection by administrative offset shall be made on any debt that has been outstanding for more than 10 years unless facts material to the Government's right to collect the debt were not known, and reasonably could not have been known, by the official or officials responsible for discovering and collecting such debt.
(f) These regulations do not apply to:
(1) A case in which administrative offset of the type of debt involved is explicitly provided for or prohibited by another statute.
(2) Debts owed to OPM by other agencies of the United States or by any State or local government.