Sec. 660-3-6-.01 - General Intercept Information

§ 660-3-6-.01. General Intercept Information

(1) As used in this Chapter, the following terms shall have the following meaning:

(a) "tax refund intercept program" - another term for "tax offset program", the program through which tax refunds are intercepted to satisfy support obligations.

(b) "legitimately in dispute" - used to denote that the noncustodial parent has presented cancelled checks, copies of money orders, court records, court orders, etc., which appear to refute the claim by the custodial parent that support payments have been missed. The noncustodial parent's "word" that he has made the payments is not sufficient evidence that support payments have been made. The term is not intended to convey the settlement of the dispute. Ultimately, the court will have to determine what is actually owed.

(c) "tax offset fee" - a fee of $10.00 will be deducted each year from the offset collection due to the non-TANF client from each noncustodial parent.

(d) "TANF arrearage" - past-due support debts which accrued during or prior to the time a client receives TANF; except that if the client no longer receives TANF, the past-due support certified as a "TANF arrearage" must be limited to the debt owed DHR. The term includes FCMP foster care arrearages. It may include assigned spousal support.

(e) "non-TANF arrearage" - past-due support owed to a custodian which accrued under an order of support during the child's minority regardless of the current age of the child.

The term includes ACFC foster care arrearages. It may also include spousal support owed in conjunction with a child support order.

(f) "affidavit of past-due support" - in the absence of publicly accountable payment records, the client must sign an affidavit which itemizes all missed support payments. The statement will serve as the basis for documenting past-due support until such time as a court rules on the matter.

(g) "administrative offset fee" - a fee of $10.00 will be deducted each time a federal payment is received.

(h) "administrative offset program" - the program through which certain federal payments are eligible for intercept to satisfy support obligations.

(i) "federal passport denial, revocation, or restriction program" - the program through which a U.S. passport is denied, revoked, or restricted due to a past-due child support debt.

(j) "unemployment compensation intercept program" -the program through which a portion of the unemployment compensation benefits of a noncustodial parent are intercepted and applied to current support obligations and arrearages.

(2) Eligible Cases

(a) Intercept enforcement remedies may be used for cases which involve a delinquent court or administrative ordered amount of child support and (1) the State has an assignment of rights to support as a result of the client's receipt of TANF or FCMP foster care or (2) the non-TANF client has made application for or is otherwise receiving Title IV-D enforcement services. Requirements for the various programs are provided below:

1. TANF (including FCMP Foster Care) Tax Offset Certification Requirements

(i) The support obligation must have been established by court order. An administrative order of another state is also acceptable.

(ii) The TANF arrearages, including interest, must be at least $150.00 for federal tax offset.

(iii) The arrearages, including interest, must be at least $500.00 for state tax offset.

(iv) Before submittal, the county has verified the accuracy of the noncustodial parent's name and SSN and the amount of past-due support for which there is a TANF assignment in effect.

(v) The county has a copy of the payment record or an affidavit completed in the manner prescribed by the Department and signed by the custodial parent attesting to the amount of support owed.

(vi) The validity of the debt is not legitimately in dispute.

(vii) The validity of the debt is not legitimately in dispute.

(viii) In interstate cases, the federal certification can only be made by the state which has the TANF assignment. Any enforcing state must be advised that the noncustodial parent's name is being certified for federal refund offset. It may also be necessary to communicate with the enforcing state for purposes of verification of arrears, obtaining a copy of the payment record, etc.

(viii) TANF arrearages certified must also include spousal support arrearages assigned to the State as a condition of the receipt of TANF. (NOTE: In accordance with State law, cases with an arrearage of less than $25.00 will not be certified to the State Department of Revenue.)

2. Non-TANF (including ACFC Foster Care) Tax Offset Certification Requirements

(i) The client must have applied for the child support services. The support obligation must have been established by court order except that an administrative order of another state is also acceptable. A $10.00 certification fee will be deducted from an offset collection due the client from each noncustodial parent.

(ii) The non-TANF arrearages, including interest, must be at least $500.00 for Federal and State certification. (NOTE: If a client currently receives TANF, all arrearages are certified under the TANF category. If the client previously received TANF, but does not currently receive it, the debt due the Department must be certified under the TANF category. Any remaining arrearages due the client would be certified under the non-TANF category.)

(iii) The validity of the debt is not legitimately in dispute.

(iv) In Interstate cases, the federal certification can only be made by the state where the client resides or has made application for child support services. Any enforcing state must be advised that the noncustodial parent's name is being certified for federal refund offset. It may also be necessary to communicate with the enforcing state for purposes of verification of arrears, obtaining a copy of the payment record, etc.

(v) Before submittal, the county has verified the accuracy of the noncustodial parent's name and SSN and the amount of delinquent support.

(vi) The Department has a copy of the order and any modifications and has a copy of the payment record or an affidavit completed in the manner prescribed by the Department and signed by the custodial parent attesting to the amount of support owed.

(vii) The noncustodial parent must not be involved in bankruptcy proceedings.

(viii) TANF and foster care records have been checked to see if there is an arrearage.

(ix) In non-TANK cases, the Department has the custodial parent's current address.

3. Unemployment compensation intercept program requirements:

(i) There is child support order with a provision for income withholding.

(ii) If there is no order, the noncustodial parent voluntarily agrees to the intercept by signing an agreement to withhold unemployment compensation.

(iii) The noncustodial parent owes a child support arrearage.

4. Administrative offset program requirements:

(i) There must be a court order for support or an administrative order from another state.

(ii) Arrearage, including interest, must be at least:

(I) $150 for a TANF or IV-E Foster Care Maintenance Payment (FCMP) case.

(II) $500 for a Non-TANF, Medicaid-only or Aid to Children in Foster Care (ACFC) case.

(iii) The name, social security number, and arrearage amount of the noncustodial parent must be verified.

(iv) If there was a non-IV-D period, the case record must contain a copy of the payment record, or the affidavit of the custodial parent specifying the payment not made by the noncustodial parent.

(v) The noncustodial parent must not be involved in bankruptcy proceedings.

(vi) The state certifying the case must be:

(I) The state with the TANF assignment on TANF cases, or

(II) The state where the custodial parent lives or is receiving non-TANF services.

5. Federal passport denial, revocation, or restriction program requirements:

(i) The child support delinquency must exceed $2,500.

(3) Original Submittal Procedures

(a) The Alabama Location, Enforcement, and Collection System (ALECS) will automatically certify all noncustodial parents meeting the criteria for intercept as requirements for submittal are met.

(4) Pre-offset Notice

(a) The Department or OCSE must send a written advance notice to individuals before referring their names for offset and passport restriction. The notice must inform noncustodial parents of the following:

1. the right to contest the State's determination that past-due support is owed or the amount of past-due support submitted;

2. the right to an administrative review hearing by the submitting state or at the noncustodial parent's request, the state with the order upon which the referral for offset is based;

3. the procedures and time frames for contacting the IV-D agency in the submitting state to request an administrative review.

(5) Case Updates: Deletions and Modifications

(a) Deletions and downward modifications of arrearages will be made by ALECS when appropriate payments are made by noncustodial parents, balances are otherwise adjusted, or a case is determined to be inappropriate for certification based on guidelines established. Upward modifications will be made as additional child support accrues.

(Effective June 28, 1983. Emergency amendment effective August 8, 1985. Permanent amendment effective November 8, 1985. Succedent emergency amendment effective November 25, 1987. Succedent permanent amendment effective March 18, 1988. Succedent emergency amendment effective August 30, 1991. Succedent permanent amendment effective December 10, 1991. Succedent emergency amendment effective July 20, 1999. Amended: Filed September 3, 1999; effective October 8, 1999. Amended: Filed October 6, 2006; effective November 10, 2006. Amended: Filed March 7, 2007; effective April 11, 2007. Amended: Filed March 6, 2009, effective April 10, 2009. Amended by Alabama Administrative Monthly Volume XXXIX, Issue No. 01, October 30, 2020, eff. December 14, 2020.)

Author: Clifford Smith

Statutory Authority:11 U.S.C. § 362; P.L. 109-171P.L. 104-193; P.L. 93-647; P.L. 98-378; 42 U.S.C. § 651 et seq.; 42 U.S.C. § 654; § 9 of P.L. 96-611; 42 U.S.C. § 663; § 5011 of P.L. 101-50842 U.S.C. § 664; 45 C.F.R. 205-235; 45 C.F.R., 301-307; Alabama State Plan - Child Support Enforcement Program; Code of Ala. 1975, §§ 30-3D-101 through 902, 38-2-6, 38-10-1 through 12, 40-18-100 through 110.

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