Enforcing Child Support Obligations of Health Care Professionals
MAY 22, 2000
TO: ALL STATE IV-D DIRECTORS
The following is to apprise you of plans currently being considered to help improve the monitoring and enforcement of the child support obligations of physicians and other professional health care providers in the IV-D caseload. We value your partnership in this matter and solicit any ideas or suggestions you may have.
As you are aware, on January 26, 2000, the White House announced a major new initiative to promote work, child support, and responsible fatherhood, including measures to collect child support from physicians and others who can afford to pay (copy enclosed). Previously, in August of 1997, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued a report of a study which revealed that a significant number of physicians studied failed to meet their child support obligations and recommended that action be taken to improve the enforcement of such obligations. Thus, in support of the White House initiative and in compliance with the OIG recommendation, OCSE is seeking ways to improve our effectiveness in monitoring and enforcing the child support obligations of these professional health care providers.
Accordingly, we are planning to perform an interagency data match between OCSE's data base of delinquent obligors and the Health Care Financing Administration's data base of professional Medicare providers. Hopefully, as a result of this match, we will gain greater insight into the scope of the problem posed by these delinquent obligors. We also are seeking to establish suggested uniform protocol for States to follow in monitoring and enforcing these obligations and intend to convene a Federal/State Work Group to accomplish this objective.
We look forward to our continued collaboration in these efforts as part of our ongoing commitment to ensure that all parents contribute to the support of their children and to make child support collections a critical priority.
David Gray Ross
Office of Child Support Enforcement
cc: ACF Hub Administrators and Regional Administrators
Regional CSE Program Managers
The White House Press Release on the Fatherhood Initiative