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Requests for Delay in Implementation of the Child Support Enforcement Provisions

AT-81-24

Published: October 7, 1981
Information About:
State/Local Child Support Agencies
Topics:
Federal Reporting, State Plan
Types:
Policy, Action Transmittals (AT)

Requests for Delay in Implementation of the Child Support Enforcement Provisions of P.L. 97-35 -- Section 2336 of P.L. 97-35

PROGRAM INSTRUCTION

ACTION TRANSMITTAL

OCSE-AT-81-24

October 7, 1981

TO : STATE AGENCIES ADMINISTERING CHILD SUPPORT

ENFORCEMENT PLANS UNDER TITLE IV-D OF THE SOCIAL

SECURITY ACT, AND OTHER INTERESTED INDIVIDUALS

SUBJECT:Requests for Delay in Implementation of the Child Support Enforcement Provisions of P.L. 97-35 -- Section 2336 of P.L. 97-35

BACKGROUND:P.L. 97-35, the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981, contains five subject matter provisions (Sections 2331 through 2335) affecting the Child Support Enforcement program and one technical provision (Section 2336) concerning delayed implementation of certain of the substantive provisions. The procedures that OCSE will use to implement the technical provision are set forth in this Action Transmittal.

CONTENT:Section 2336 of P.L. 97-35 provides that, if a State IV-D agency demonstrates to the satisfaction of the Secretary that it cannot by reason of State law comply with certain requirements of P.L. 97-35 on October 1, 1981, the Secretary may prescribe that for that State the requirement(s) will become effective the first month after the close of the first session of the State's legislature ending on or after October 1, 1981. The term "session of a State's legislature" is defined as including any regular, special, budget, or other session of a State legislature.

The delayed implementation provision contained in Section 2336 is not applicable to all of the five subject matter provisions of P.L. 97-35 that affect the Child Support Enforcement program. The chart below shows which provisions may be delayed under Section 2336 and which provisions have firm effective dates.

Effective Dates of Child Support Enforcement Provisions of P.L. 97-35.

Delay

Permissible

by Reason of

Section Effective Date State Law

2331 - Federal Tax Refund October 1, 1981 Yes

Offset

2332 - Collection of October 1, 1981 Not applicable

Spousal Support because

implementation

is optional

2333 - Fees for Non-AFDC October 1, 1981 Yes

Cases

2334 - Obligations Not August 13, 1981 No

Discharged in Bankruptcy

2335 - Intercept of Optional on August 13, No Unemployment 1981; required

Benefits on October 1, 1982

As indicated by this chart, the delayed effective date provision is applicable only to the Section 2331 provisions on Federal tax refund offset and the Section 2333 provisions on fees charged in non-AFDC cases.

Since both of these provisions are State plan requirements, OCSE will use the State plan amendment process as the vehicle for States to request postponement of their implementation of these provisions. The preprinted plan amendments that OCSE will issue for these two sections of the statute will provide check boxes for States to indicate whether or not they are able to implement the provisions as of October 1, 1981. A State that is unable to implement the provisions on that date because of restrictive State law will be asked to submit documentation, as an attachment to the plan amendment, in the form of a copy of the restrictive State law or a State Attorney General's opinion that implementation is precluded because there is insufficient authority under State law. The State will also be asked to indicate when it will be able to implement; that is, to indicate the first month after the close of the first session of the State's legislature ending on or after October 1, 1981. Approval of the delayed implementation will be provided by OCSE through the plan amendment approval process.

If it is determined that a State cannot, in fact, implement the provisions contained in Sections 2331 and 2333 of P.L. 97-35 because it lacks statutory authority to do so, the State is to proceed under its existing statute with respect to these provisions until the earliest date it can meet the new requirements.

REFERENCES:Section 2336 of P.L. 97-35 enacted on August 13, 1981 (see OCSEIM-81-13, dated August 19, 1981)

INQUIRIES TO: OCSE Regional Representatives

Acting Deputy Director

Office of Child Support

Enforcement