Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 290-7-1-.11 - Passport Suspension

(a) Section 454(31) of the Social Security Act makes participation in the Passport Denial program a IV-D State plan requirement. All States are required to have in effect a procedure to certify to the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement ("OCSE") individuals who owe child support arrears in excess of $2,500. The States are also required to provide notice to individuals and give them an opportunity to contest the Department's determination of the arrears amount. When a State submits a case to OCSE with arrears in excess of $2,500 (or the State submits an increase to an existing case that causes the arrears to exceed $2,500), OCSE automatically forwards the case to the United States Department of State for passport denial.
(b) The passport of an obligor may be denied, revoked, or restricted through the Federal Passport Program, if the child support debt is in excess of $2,500.
(c) In an intergovernmental case, only the certifying state has the authority to delete a noncustodial parent from the passport denial, revocation, or restriction process.
(d) The Department periodically issues letters setting forth the amount of arrears owed. An obligor who wishes to contest the determination of arrears must send a letter to the DCSS office that certified the case to OSCE requesting an administrative hearing. If an obligor receives a notice stating that the arrears amount is in excess of $2,500 and fails to seek a hearing within 30 days of mailing of the notice, the passport may be suspended by federal authorities without further notice or opportunity for hearing. If a hearing is timely requested, the issue at hearing is strictly limited to the amount of arrears or misidentification of the obligor. Neither the Department nor an administrative law judge ("ALJ") is authorized to reinstate a passport, only the federal government can do that. The Department is authorized only to certify the amount of arrears owed. In order to be removed from the certified list, an obligor must pay the arrears either in full or in an amount sufficient to bring the arrearage amount below the $2,500 threshold.
(e) The Department is authorized to remove an obligor from the certified list only upon payment of the arrears or upon receipt of a decision from the ALJ finding that the obligor is not in arrears or has been misidentified. However, the Department may, in its sole discretion,"exempt" an obligor from the certified list if:
(1) The Department is convinced that the passport is necessary and indispensable to the obligor for the purpose of generating income needed to pay current support or arrears; and,
(2) The obligor posts bond or some other form of surety payable to the Department for the full amount of the arrears owed; and,
(3) The obligor enters into a written Enforcement Deferral with the Department setting forth the schedule for repayment of the arrears amount in addition to current support, if applicable. Failure by the obligor to adhere in full with the Enforcement Deferral shall result in forfeiture of the bond or surety posted by the obligor.
(f) An administrative hearing and any appeal therefrom under this Rule shall be held in accordance with the procedures set forth at Rule 290-7-1-.19.

Notes

Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 290-7-1-.11
O.C.G.A. Secs 19-6-30et seq., 19-11-12, 19-11-15, 19-11-17, 19-11-19, 19-11-24.
Original Rule entitled "Access to Fair Hearing Review Process" adopted. F. Oct. 17, 1991; eff. Nov. 6, 1991. Repealed: New Rule entitled "Passport Suspension" adopted. F. June 15, 2011; eff. July 5, 2011.

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