(a) Referral to Oklahoma Child Support Services (OCSS). Federal regulations require referral to OCSS no later than two working days after the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefit is issued based on deprivation due to absence. The appropriate completed OCSS forms supplement the computer-generated referral and are submitted, with the exception of good cause, to OCSS. Information which may have an effect on support enforcement may become known after the OCSS district office referral has been made. • 1
(b) Receipt of child support or spousal support. For purposes of this Subchapter, child support is defined as voluntary monetary contributions or court-ordered obligations. When a child support order also contains an order for spousal support which may be referred to as alimony or support alimony in Oklahoma, the obligation for spousal support must also be assigned to the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS). At the application interview, the applicant is informed of the responsibility to forward to the Oklahoma Centralized Support Registry (OCSR) any support payments received from the absent parent(s) after TANF certification. • 2
- (1) Payments received during application period. All child support payments reported by an applicant during the time prior to certification are considered as income. For purposes of rules in this Chapter, certification is considered the date of the supervisor's signature authorizing payment. Support anticipated to be received after certification is not considered as the client has agreed by signing the application to submit any future payments to OCSR. • 3
- (2) Payments received after certification. Any support payments brought to the human services center (HSC) by the client after certification must be forwarded to OCSR. Payments are not sent in the form of cash. When OCSS receives child support in excess of the monthly court ordered amount, the excess payment may be sent to the client. The client receives this excess amount and it is considered as unearned income.
- (3) Retained support payments. If the worker becomes aware that the client has retained assigned support payments, the OCSS district office is contacted with this information.
- (A) The client is considered as not cooperating if:
- (i) assigned support paid directly to the client is retained;
- (ii) he or she refuses to repay a retained support overpayment in full or sign a repayment plan;
- (iii) he or she fails to make payments according to the repayment agreement; or
- (iv) he or she retains assigned direct support payment even if any overpayment has been repaid in full or a repayment plan is being followed.
- (B) The OCSS district office determines whether non-cooperation has occurred and notifies the worker. When non-cooperation is determined, the TANF cash assistance is reduced by 25% of the TANF payment standard and the support is considered as income the next effective date. • 4
- (C) When notified by OCSS that the client has resumed cooperation, the worker removes the 25% penalty and no longer considers the support as income. The cash assistance is increased the next effective date. • 4
- (4) Child support and other income exceeds cash assistance. When a support payment is received that is greater than or equal to that month's TANF cash assistance, the TANF cash assistance must be closed the next effective date. • 5 If the TANF cash assistance is not closed timely, any child support payment received during that month or subsequent months is retained by OCSS for reimbursement of TANF payments made for those months or any preceding months. • 6 When child support, spousal support, or both, causes ineligibility, the family is entitled to continued medical benefits in accordance with OAC 340:10-3-75. Following reimbursement of all TANF cash assistance, any excess payment remaining is forwarded to the client. • 7
- (5) Federal and/or state tax intercept payments. Federal and/or state tax intercept is used for the collection of current and past due child support payments, including interest owed.
- (A) Tax intercept payments collected by OCSS prior to the client's current receipt of TANF and held for six months may be distributed to the client and is considered as a resource the month following the month of receipt. • 6
- (B) Tax intercept payments collected for interest owed on past due child support may be forwarded to the client when the principle amount of past due child support has been paid off. • 7
(c) Child support services after TANF closure. At the time the TANF benefit is closed, the client is advised that he or she can receive non-TANF Child Support Services with no further application, no fee required, nor charge for collection deducted. This service occurs automatically unless the client specifically requests in writing that OCSS not provide the service or the client becomes ineligible for non-TANF Child Support Services for some other reason.