States must have electronic child support by Oct. 1, 2015

All states must provide employers the option of electronically receiving child support orders through the Federal Office of Child Support (OCSE) by October 1, 2015. The requirement was included in the Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act, H.R. 4980 (P.L. 113-183) and was signed by the President on September 29, 2014. States and territories in development are Kentucky, Guam and Maryland. States currently using e-IWO: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.

Report due

The new law also requires the OCSE to file a report with Congress by June 2015. OCSE has posted a Notice for Request for Information on its website: https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2014/10/23/2014-25024/child-support-enforcement-program-report-to-congress. Comments on the new law are due by December 22, 2014, and can be sent by E-mail to OCSEreport@acf.hhs.gov. E-mail submissions will receive an electronic confirmation acknowledging receipt of the response, but will not receive individualized feedback on any suggestions. Postal Mail: ACF/Office of Child Support Enforcement, Attn: OCSE Report–Sheila Drake, 370 L’Enfant Promenade SW., 4th Floor East, Washington, DC 20447. Submissions by postal mail must be received by the deadline, and should allow sufficient time for security processing.

New proposed regulations

In addition, the OCSE has issued proposed regulations to implement the President’s Executive Order 13563, Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review. OCSE proposes revisions to make Child Support Enforcement program operations and enforcement procedures more flexible, more effective, and more efficient by recognizing the strength of existing state enforcement programs, advancements in technology that can enable improved collection rates, and the move toward electronic communication and document management. OCSE also proposes to improve and simplify program operations, and remove outmoded limitations to program innovations to better serve families. Changes are also proposed to clarify and correct technical provisions in existing regulations.

Comments are invited

Comments on the proposed regulations are due by January 16, 2015. Employers may transmit written comments electronically via the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. This approach is the preferred method for receiving comments. To download an electronic version of the rule, you may access http://www.regulations.gov and follow the provided instructions. Additionally, comments may be sent via the United States Postal Service to: Office of Child Support Enforcement, Administration for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services, Attention: Director, Division of Policy, Mail Stop: OCSE/DP, 370 L’Enfant Promenade SW., Washington, DC 20447. Comments via overnight service should be sent to: Office of Child Support Enforcement, Administration for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services, Attention: Director, Policy Division, Mail Stop: OCSE/DP, 901 D Street SW., Washington, DC 20447. Comments may be faxed to (202) 260-5980. Comments will be available for public inspection. To schedule an appointment, please call (202) 401-9271. For further information contact, Anne Miller, Division of Policy, OCSE, telephone (202) 401-1467, email: anne.miller@acf.hhs.gov or Barbara Addison, Division of Policy, OCSE, telephone (202) 401-5742, email: barbara.addison@acf.hhs.gov. Deaf and hearing impaired individuals may call the Federal Dual Party Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. (79 FR 68,548, November 17, 2014; Child Support Report, Vol 36 No. 11, November/December.)

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