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Partial Masking of a Noncustodial Parent's SSN on OCSE-Issued Pre-Offset Notices


Published: January 29, 2009

ATTACHMENT: OCSE-Issued Pre-Offset Notices (19kb Adobe pdf)


RE: Partial Masking of a Noncustodial Parent's Social Security Number on OCSE-Issued Pre-Offset Notices

Dear Colleague:

Effective March 1, 2009, the Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) will begin to partially mask the noncustodial parent's (NCP) Social Security number (SSN) on its Pre-Offset Notice (PON). The NCP's full SSN will no longer appear on PONs issued by OCSE. Instead, the first five digits of the SSN will be masked, i.e., replaced by asterisks, while the last four digits will continue to be displayed. For example, an SSN previously displayed as 123-45-6789 on the notice will now be shown as ***-**-6789. An example of the updated OCSE PON is attached for your information.

Several States expressed concern with the NCP's full SSN appearing on the PON. After careful deliberation and research of Federal statutes and regulations authorizing language that must be included in the PON, OCSE determined that the NCP's full SSN is not required on the Notice.

A State IV-D agency that issues its own PON may also choose to implement this change. As a reminder, when changes are made to a State-issued PON, the State must submit the proposed revised PON to its OCSE Regional Office for review prior to its use to ensure that it meets the requirements under 45 CFR 303.72(e). Also, a copy should be sent to the OCSE Federal Collections Unit.

We hope that this change will assist States in ensuring the privacy and safeguarding of personally identifiable information. If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Rebecca Hamil at (202) 690-5378 or rebecca.hamil@acf.hhs.gov


Donna Bonar
Acting Commissioner
Office of Child Support Enforcement


cc: Regional Program Managers

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