Human Services Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

HB-7037

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING WITHHOLDING WORKERS' COMPENSATION INCOME FOR CHILD SUPPORT.

Vote Date:

3/3/2017

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable

PH Date:

2/14/2017

File No.:

73

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Human Services Committee

REASONS FOR BILL:

To encourage timely payments of child support from those who receive workers compensation benefits.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Kathleen M. Brennan, Deputy Commissioner, Department of Social Services; in support of this bill, she stated that employers are currently mandated to notify the Judicial Branch's Support Enforcement Services “promptly” when there is a claim made for workers compensation benefits from an employee who has an income withholding order. However, there are not currently means to enforce this requirement should the employer not follow through on it. Without being notified of the employees change in employment status, the income withholding order often does not carry to the workers compensation benefit.

In SFY 2016, the IV-D program, through the Office of Child Support Services, collected approx. $301.7 million in payments. Income withholding is the most effective way to enforce these payments. Of the $301 million, 65% was collected through income withholding. This has proven be effective and expedient and consistent for the families involved.

Judge Paul Knierim, Judicial Branch, External Affairs Division; in support of this bill, he stated that the Judicial Branch believes that this proposal would both increase the amount of child support collected while conserving SES resources. It would require that an employer provide the carrier of the workers compensation benefits with a copy of the withholding order. The carrier would then have to withhold workers' compensation funds in order to provide payment to the dependent and the state, as required by the order.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

None submitted.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

None submitted.

Reported by: Kayleigh Royston

Date: 03/09/17