National Directory of New Hires Match with Dept of Education
DEAR COLLEAGUE LETTER
DATE: February 8, 2001
TO: ALL STATE IV-D DIRECTORS
RE: National Directory of New Hires (NDNH) Match with the Department of Education (ED)
This letter is intended to provide you with information about a new initiative that compares student loan data from the Department of Education (ED) with employment data from the National Directory of New Hires (NDNH). We are working closely with ED to prevent any complications from this initiative that could impact the work and resources of State IV-D offices.
Congress granted ED access to the NDNH under provisions of Public Law 106-113, which was signed into law on November 29, 1999. These provisions were designed to improve the ability of ED to collect on defaulted loans and grant overpayments made to individuals under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965. The Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) and ED negotiated and implemented a Computer Matching Agreement in December 2000. The first match between records of delinquent student loan obligors and employment records in the NDNH was completed in January 2001, and involved approximately 2 million records. ED estimates that quarterly matches with the NDNH can result in the collection of $500 million of delinquent debts over the next five years.
ED agrees that the occurrence of a match is not conclusive evidence of the address, employer, or wages of an identified individual, but is an indication that further examination is warranted. In accordance with subsection (p)(1)(A)(i) of the Privacy Act, 5 U.S.C. 552a, ED will take no adverse action against any individual, as a result of information produced by this matching program until ED has independently verified the information contained in the NDNH records. ED will determine whether address, employer, or wage information of the matched individual as received from the NDNH is the same as the data on ED's files. If the data is new or different, ED will contact the individual to confirm the locate information without indicating that it was received from the NDNH. If the individual is unable to verify the information, ED will contact the employer(s) shown on the NDNH to confirm the match information. Upon verification of the locate information, ED will work with the borrowers and encourage them to enter a voluntary payment plan. ED has assured OCSE that automatic wage withholding will be used only as a last resort.
As OCSE continues to implement initiatives such as the NDNH match with ED, we will strive to do so in a way that has the least impact on State child support enforcement offices. If you have any questions regarding the Department of Education data match with the NDNH, please do not hesitate to contact the OCSE DIvision of Federal Systems.
We want to thank you for your understanding in implementing interagency initiatives, and as always, for your continued dedication to our nation’s children.
Office of Child Support Enforcement
cc: Regional Program Managers
ACF Regional Administrators