General Laws of Massachusetts - Chapter 119A Child Support Enforcement - Section 4 Statewide automated information retrieval system; state case registry; paternity and child support information; comparison and monitoring of other state and federal systems

Section 4. (a) The IV-D agency shall, subject to appropriation, employ personnel, develop automated collection, disbursement and data systems, and establish field offices to carry out its responsibilities. Said IV-D agency is also authorized to contract with other public and private agencies to carry out its responsibilities. The IV-D agency shall have in operation a single statewide automated data processing information retrieval system which has the capability to perform the tasks specified by Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act. The automated system shall include a registry, which shall be known as the “state case registry”, that contains records with respect to each case in which IV-D services are being provided by the IV-D agency pursuant to Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act; and with respect to all other cases, including cases for which the IV-D agency only collects and disburses income withholding payments, each support order established or modified in the commonwealth on or after October 1, 1998. Such records for all cases shall use standardized data elements for both parents, such as names, social security numbers, dates of birth and other such information as the IV-D agency deems appropriate or as the federal secretary of health and human services may require. Each case record in the state case registry with respect to which IV-D services are being provided and with respect to which a support order has been established shall include a record of the amount of monthly or other periodic support owed under the order, and other amounts, including arrearages, interest or late payment penalties, and fees, due or overdue under the order; any such amounts collected; the distribution of such collected amounts; the date of birth, and beginning not later than October 1, 1999, the social security number of each child for whom the order requires the provision of support; and the amount of any lien imposed pursuant to section 6.

The IV-D agency shall promptly establish and update, maintain, and regularly monitor case records in the state case registry with respect to which IV-D services are being provided on the basis of information on administrative actions and administrative and judicial proceedings and orders relating to paternity and support, information obtained from comparison with federal, state, or local sources of information, information on support collections and distributions, and any other relevant information. With respect to all other cases in the state case registry which are not receiving IV-D services, including cases for which the IV-D agency only collects and disburses income withholding payments, the IV-D agency shall update the information required by this section upon provision of such information by the court or the parties.

Each party to any paternity or child support proceeding, whether or not a recipient of IV-D services, is required, subject to privacy and safety safeguards as provided in section 5A, to file with the state case registry upon entry of an order, and to update as appropriate, information on location and identity of the party, including social security number, residential and mailing addresses, telephone number, driver’s license number, and name, address, and telephone number of employer. In any subsequent child support enforcement action between the parties, upon sufficient showing that diligent effort has been made to ascertain the location of such a party, the court shall deem due process requirements for notice and service of process to be met with respect to the party, upon delivery of written notice to the most recent residential or employer address filed with the state case registry.

(b) The IV-D agency shall use the automated system required by this section to extract information from, to share and compare information with, subject to section 5A of this chapter, section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 and section 21 of chapter 62C, and to receive information from other data bases and information comparison services, in order to obtain or provide information necessary to enable the IV-D agency or other state or federal agencies to carry out the requirements of Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act. Such information comparison activities shall include: (1) furnishing, and updating as necessary, to the Federal Case Registry of Child Support Orders information on child support cases recorded in the state case registry, including notification of expiration of orders; (2) exchanging information with the Federal Parent Locator Service; (3) exchanging information with other agencies of the state, including the wage reporting and financial institution match system of the department of revenue, and agencies of other states administering programs funded under Title IV, Part A, of the Social Security Act, programs operated pursuant to Title XIX of the Social Security Act, and other programs designated by the federal Secretary of Health and Human Services; and (4) exchanging information with other agencies, authorities, commissions, courts, counties, cities and towns of the state, companies authorized to issue policies of insurance pursuant to chapter 175, pension or retirement plans, agencies of other states, and interstate information networks, as necessary and appropriate to carry out, or assist other states to carry out, the purposes of the Social Security Act.

(c) The IV-D agency shall use the automated system to the maximum extent feasible, to implement expedited administrative procedures as required by this chapter and Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act and to assist and facilitate the collection and disbursement of support payments through the state disbursement unit as provided in section 5, through the performance of functions, including transmission of orders and notices to employers and other debtors for the withholding of income within two business days after receipt of notice of, and the income source subject to, such withholding, from a court, another state, an employer, the Federal Parent Locator Service, or another source recognized by the state, and using uniform formats as prescribed by the federal Secretary of Health and Human Services; ongoing monitoring to promptly identify failures to make timely payment of support; and automatic use of enforcement procedures where payments are not timely made. In cases receiving IV-D services, the IV-D agency shall provide reports to the obligor and the obligee of the amounts of payments received and how such payments were distributed as required by Title IV, Part D of the Social Security Act.

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Last modified: September 11, 2015