WSR 12-15-071

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

(Division of Child Support)

[ Filed July 18, 2012, 9:14 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 12-11-083.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: The division of child support (DCS) is adopting new sections and/or amendments and repealing three sections in chapter 388-14A WAC, to implement section 5 of SSB 6386 (chapter 253, Laws of 2012) and the technical amendments contained in SHB 2828 (chapter 4, Laws of 2012). Both bills have an effective date of June 7, 2012. Families applying for a child care subsidy on or after June 7, 2012, will not be required to apply for DCS services as a condition of eligibility.

DCS is amending WAC 388-14A-2040, 388-14A-2045, 388-14A-2050 and 388-14A-2075; and is repealing WAC 388-14A-2007, 388-14A-2042, and 388-14A-2093. DCS adopted emergency rules, effective June 7, 2012, under WSR 12-13-002.

Hearing Location(s): Office Building 2, Lookout Room, DSHS Headquarters, 1115 Washington, Olympia, WA 98504

(public parking at 11th and Jefferson. A map is available at http://www1.dshs.wa.gov/msa/rpau/RPAU-OB-2directions.html

or by calling (360) 664-6094), on August 21, 2012, at 10:00 a.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: Not earlier than August 22, 2012.

Submit Written Comments to: DSHS Rules Coordinator, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504-5850, delivery 1115 Washington Street S.E., Olympia, WA 98503, e-mail DSHSRPAURulesCoordinator@dshs.wa.gov, fax (360) 664-6185, by 5 p.m. on August 21, 2012.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Jennisha Johnson, DSHS rules consultant, by August 7, 2012, TTY (360) 664-6178 or (360) 664-6094 or by e-mail at johnsjl4@dshs.wa.gov.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: DCS is adopting new sections and/or amendments and repealing three sections in chapter 388-14A WAC, to implement section 5 of SSB 6386 (chapter 253, Laws of 2012) and the technical amendments contained in SHB 2828 (chapter 4, Laws of 2012). Both bills have an effective date of June 7, 2012. Families applying for a child care subsidy on or after June 7, 2012, will not be required to apply for DCS services as a condition of eligibility.

DCS is amending WAC 388-14A-2040, 388-14A-2045, 388-14A-2050, and 388-14A-2075; and is repealing WAC 388-14A-2007, 388-14A-2042, and 388-14A-2093.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: DCS is implementing section 5 of SSB 6386 (chapter 253, Laws of 2012) and the technical amendments contained in SHB 2828 (chapter 4, Laws of 2012). Both bills have an effective date of June 7, 2012.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: Section 5 of SSB 6386 (chapter 253, Laws of 2012); SHB 2828 (chapter 4, Laws of 2012); RCW 34.05.220, 43.20A.550, 74.04.055, 74.08.090, 70.20.040.

Statute Being Implemented: Section 5 of SSB 6386 (chapter 253, Laws of 2012), SHB 2828 (chapter 4, Laws of 2012).

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Agency Comments or Recommendations, if any, as to Statutory Language, Implementation, Enforcement, and Fiscal Matters: The department of early learning (DEL) is also amending its rules to implement these bills. DCS, DEL and the DSHS community services division (CSD) are coordinating the implementation process.

Both DEL and DCS adopted emergency rules effective June 7, 2012.

Name of Proponent: Department of social and health services, governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: Nancy Koptur, DCS HQ, P.O. Box 9162, Olympia, WA 98507-9162, (360) 664-5065.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. This rule does not have an economic impact on small businesses. It only affects individuals who have support obligations or individuals who are owed child support.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. The rule does meet the definition of a significant legislative rule but DSHS/DCS rules relating to the care of dependent children are exempt from preparing further analysis under RCW 34.05.328 (5)(b)(vii).

July 13, 2012

Katherine I. Vasquez

Rules Coordinator

4359.2
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 11-23-087, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11)

WAC 388-14A-2040   Do I have to cooperate with the division of child support in establishing or enforcing child support?   (1) You must cooperate with the division of child support (DCS) when you receive public assistance unless the department determines there is good cause not to cooperate under WAC 388-422-0020.

(2) ((You must cooperate with the division of child support (DCS) when you receive a child care subsidy, unless the department determines there is good cause not to cooperate under WAC 388-422-0020 or another rule of the department of early learning (DEL).

(3))) As described in WAC 388-14A-2080, DCS may close a nonassistance case if the custodial parent (CP) fails to cooperate, if cooperation is essential for the next step in enforcement.

(((4))) (3) For purposes of this section and WAC 388-14A-2075, cooperating with DCS includes cooperating with those acting on behalf of DCS (its "representatives"), namely the prosecuting attorney, the attorney general, or a private attorney paid per RCW 74.20.350. In cases where paternity is at issue, the custodial parent (CP) of a child who receives assistance must cooperate whether or not the parent receives assistance.

(((5))) (4) Cooperation means giving information, attending interviews, attending hearings, or taking actions to help DCS establish and collect child support. This information and assistance is necessary for DCS to:

(a) Identify and locate the responsible parent;

(b) Establish the paternity of the child(ren) on assistance in the CP's care; and

(c) Establish or collect support payments or resources such as property due the CP or the child(ren).

(((6))) (5) The CP must also cooperate by sending to DCS any child support received by the CP while on assistance, as required by RCW 74.20A.275 (3)(c). If the client keeps these payments, known as retained support, the CP must sign an agreement to repay under RCW 74.20A.275, and the CP must honor that agreement.

(((7))) (6) The cooperation requirements of subsections (1), (3) and (4) ((and (5))) above, but not subsection (((6))) (5), apply to a recipient of medicaid-only assistance.

(((8) The cooperation requirements of subsections (2), (4) and (5) above, but not subsection (6), apply to a recipient of a child care subsidy.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 34.05.020, 34.05.220, 74.08.090, 74.20.040, and 2011 c 42. 11-23-087, 388-14A-2040, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.20A.310, 45 C.F.R. 302.31 and 302.33. 06-03-120, 388-14A-2040, filed 1/17/06, effective 2/17/06. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090, 34.05.310 (4)(d), 26.23.035, 74.20A.310. 03-20-072, 388-14A-2040, filed 9/29/03, effective 10/30/03. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090, 26.23.035, 74.20A.310. 01-03-089, 388-14A-2040, filed 1/17/01, effective 2/17/01. Formerly WAC 388-14-201.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 11-23-087, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11)

WAC 388-14A-2045   What can I do if I am afraid that cooperating with the division of child support will be harmful to me or to my children?   (1) If a custodial parent (CP) receiving public assistance fears that the establishment or enforcement of support may result in harm to the CP or the children, the CP may be excused from the cooperation requirements. The CP must contact the community services division (CSD) to claim good cause not to cooperate under WAC 388-422-0020. The CP may claim good cause:

(a) At the time of application for public assistance; or

(b) At any time thereafter.

(2) If a CP who is not receiving public assistance fears that the establishment or enforcement of support may result in harm to the CP or the children, the CP should tell the division of child support (DCS) that family violence is an issue in the case, so that DCS may take appropriate action. The CP may ask DCS to close the nonassistance support enforcement case.

(((3) If a CP who receives a child care subsidy but does not receive public assistance claims good cause not to comply with the requirement to seek support enforcement services, the department of early learning (DEL) or CSD may grant good cause, either under WAC 388-422-0020 or under DEL rules.

(a) If the CP does not claim good cause at the time the child care subsidy is granted, the CP may later claim good cause by contacting CSD.

(b) If the CP requests DCS to close a nonassistance case, DCS notifies CSD that the case has been closed. The CP may claim good cause if CSD takes action to sanction the CP for closing the DCS case.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 34.05.020, 34.05.220, 74.08.090, 74.20.040, and 2011 c 42. 11-23-087, 388-14A-2045, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090. 01-03-089, 388-14A-2045, filed 1/17/01, effective 2/17/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 11-23-087, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11)

WAC 388-14A-2050   Who decides if I have good cause not to cooperate?   (1) The community services division (CSD) decides whether you have good cause not to cooperate with the division of child support (DCS). You must tell CSD if you want to claim good cause.

(a) CSD determines good cause under WAC 388-422-0020 ((or under the rules adopted by the department of early learning (DEL))).

(b) You may claim good cause at the time you apply for public assistance ((or for a child care subsidy)), or at any time thereafter.

(2) When you make a claim of good cause not to cooperate, DCS does not take any action on your case while CSD is reviewing your good cause claim.

(((3) If you are not receiving public assistance but are applying for a child care subsidy, you may be granted good cause and not be required to apply for child support enforcement services.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 34.05.020, 34.05.220, 74.08.090, 74.20.040, and 2011 c 42. 11-23-087, 388-14A-2050, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090. 01-03-089, 388-14A-2050, filed 1/17/01, effective 2/17/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 11-23-087, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11)

WAC 388-14A-2075   What happens if the division of child support determines that I am not cooperating?   (1) When the division of child support (DCS) or its representatives believe that a custodial parent (CP) who receives cash assistance or medical assistance is not cooperating as defined in WAC 388-14A-2040, DCS sends a notice to the CP and to the community services division (CSD) about the noncooperation.

(a) The notice contains the following information:

(i) How the noncooperation was determined, including what actions were required;

(ii) What actions the CP must take to resume cooperation;

(iii) That this notice was sent to CSD;

(iv) That the CP may contact CSD immediately if the CP disagrees with the notice, needs help in order to cooperate, or believes the actions required are unreasonable; and

(v) That CSD may sanction the CP by either reducing or terminating the grant.

(b) CSD sends a notice of planned action to the CP as provided by WAC 388-472-0005 (1)(i).

(c) Either the notice of alleged noncooperation or CSD's notice of planned action may serve as the basis for a sanction.

(d) If the noncooperation was due to missing an interview without reasonable excuse, the CP will be considered to be cooperating when the CP appears for a rescheduled interview and either provides information or attests to the lack of information. DCS or its representative must reschedule the interview within seven business days from the date the CP contacts them to reschedule an interview.

(e) If the noncooperation was due to not taking a required action, cooperation resumes when the CP takes that action.

(2) There is no hearing right for a notice of noncooperation, but the CP may request a hearing on the sanction imposed by CSD.

(3) ((When DCS or its representatives believe that a CP who does not receive public assistance but does receive a child care subsidy is not cooperating, and that cooperation is essential for the next step in establishment or enforcement, DCS sends a notice of case closure to the CP.

(a) The notice of case closure contains the following information:

(i) That DCS cannot take the next step in establishment or enforcement because of the CP's failure to cooperate;

(ii) What actions the CP must take to resume cooperation;

(iii) The DCS will notify CSD of case closure;

(iv) That DCS may close the nonassistance case if the CP does not cooperate within sixty days; and

(v) That CSD may sanction the CP. Any sanctions for failure to cooperate are determined by CSD.

(4))) If the CP takes the actions required to resume cooperation within sixty days, DCS leaves the case open and continues to establish or enforce the support obligation.

(((5))) (4) The CP may request a hearing to contest case closure, as described in WAC 388-14A-2095.

(((6) If DCS closes the case due to noncooperation, a CP who does not receive public assistance but does receive a child care subsidy may request a hearing on the sanction imposed by CSD.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 34.05.020, 34.05.220, 74.08.090, 74.20.040, and 2011 c 42. 11-23-087, 388-14A-2075, filed 11/17/11, effective 12/18/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090, 34.05.310 (4)(d), 26.23.035, 74.20A.310. 03-20-072, 388-14A-2075, filed 9/29/03, effective 10/30/03. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090, 26.23.035, 74.20A.310. 01-03-089, 388-14A-2075, filed 1/17/01, effective 2/17/01. Formerly WAC 388-14-202.]


REPEALER

     The following sections of the Washington Administrative Code are repealed:
WAC 388-14A-2007 Does an application for subsidized child care automatically become an application for support enforcement services?
WAC 388-14A-2042 What happens if I don't cooperate with DCS while I receive a child care subsidy?
WAC 388-14A-2093 Who receives notice of DCS' intent to close a case when the custodial parent receives a child care subsidy?

Washington State Code Reviser's Office