DEAR COLLEAGUE LETTER
DATE: January 16, 2004
TO: ALL STATE IV-A AND IV-D DIRECTORS
RE: Disclosure of Federal Tax Data by IV-D Programs to IV-A Programs
Some recent IRS safeguard reviews indicate that IV-A agencies receiving tax data from IV-D agencies may be using the data for the purpose of determining eligibility for TANF benefits. Based on those review findings, IRS requested that ACF clarify IRS policy regarding use and redisclosure of tax data. This letter is intended to outline the parameters of that data sharing.
Child Support Enforcement and TANF programs are required to exchange information for purposes of determining proper distribution of child support collections. Federal tax data may be shared for that purpose. This information may be disclosed only for purposes of, and to the extent necessary in, establishing and collecting child support obligations from, and locating, individuals owing such obligations. Use of the data for eligibility determination is not a permissible use of the data. Federal tax data obtained from the IV-D agency may only be used for IV-D purposes under the Internal Revenue Code. 26 U.S.C. 6103(l)(6). The IV-A agency has access to Federal tax data directly from the IRS under a separate section of the Internal Revenue Code, 26 U.S.C. 6103(l)(7), which can be used to determine eligibility.
If you have any questions about this information, please contact your regional office staff. Thank you for your continued commitment to serving the needs of our nation's children.
Sherri Z. Heller, Ed.D.
Office of Child Support Enforcement
Office of Family Assistance
cc: Regional Program Managers
ACF Regional Administrators