Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 63.2. Welfare (Social Services)
Chapter 19. Child Support Enforcement

§ 63.2-1902. Central unit for information and administration; request and receipt of information from other entities and agencies; disclosure of such information.

The Department is authorized and directed to establish a central unit within the Department to administer the Title IV D State Plan according to 45 C.F.R. 302.12. The central unit shall have the statewide jurisdiction and authority to:

1. Establish a registry for the receipt of information;

2. Answer interstate inquiries concerning noncustodial parents;

3. Coordinate and supervise departmental activities in relation to noncustodial parents to ensure effective cooperation with law-enforcement agencies; and

4. Contract and enter into cooperative agreements with individuals and agencies including law-enforcement agencies, in order that they may assist the Department in its responsibilities.

The central unit within the Department shall supervise offices whose primary functions are:

a. Location of absent noncustodial parents;

b. Assessment of the ability of parents to pay child or child and spousal support and to obtain health care coverage or cash medical support, or both, for dependent children;

c. Establishment, modification and enforcement of support obligations including health care coverage for dependent children, through administrative action;

d. Preparation of individual cases for court action existing under all laws of the Commonwealth;

e. Ensuring on a consistent basis that support continues in all cases in which support is assessed administratively or ordered by the court; and

f. Provision of its services in establishing paternity and establishing and enforcing support obligations equally to public-assisted and nonpublic-assisted families.

To effectuate the purposes of this section, the Commissioner may request and shall receive from the records of state, county and local agencies within and without the Commonwealth, including but not limited to such agencies and entities responsible for vital records; tax and revenue; real and titled personal property; authorizations to engage in a business, trade, profession or occupation; employment security; motor vehicle licensing and registration; public assistance programs and corrections, all information and assistance as authorized by this chapter. The Commissioner may request from state and local criminal justice agencies within the Commonwealth assistance in locating and serving individuals who owe child support and have an outstanding civil show cause summons or capias pursuant to § 16.1-278.16. Solely for the purposes of obtaining motor vehicle licensing and registration information from entities within and without the Commonwealth, the Division of Child Support Enforcement shall be deemed to be a criminal justice agency.

With respect to individuals who owe child support or are alleged in a pending paternity proceeding to be a putative father, the Commissioner may request and shall receive the names and addresses of such individuals and the names and addresses of such individuals' employers as appearing in the customer records of public service corporations and companies as defined in § 56-1, cable television companies and financial institutions. All state, county and city departments, boards, bureaus or other entities or agencies, officers and employees shall cooperate in the location of noncustodial parents who have abandoned or deserted, or are failing to support, children and their custodial parents and shall on request supply the Department with all information on hand relative to the location, income, benefits and property of such noncustodial parents, notwithstanding any provision of law making such information confidential. These entities are authorized to provide such information as is necessary for this purpose. Only information directly bearing on the identity and whereabouts of a person owing or asserted to be owing an obligation of support shall be requested and used or transmitted by the Commissioner. The Commissioner may make such information available only to public officials, agencies and political subdivisions of this Commonwealth, and other states seeking to locate parents who have deserted their children and other persons liable for support of dependents for the purpose of enforcing their liability for support. A civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 may be assessed by the Commissioner for a failure to respond to a request for information made in accordance with this section.

Any public or private person, partnership, firm, corporation or association, any financial institution and any political subdivision, department or other entity of the Commonwealth who in good faith and in the absence of gross negligence, willful misconduct or breach of an ethical duty, provide information requested pursuant to this section shall be immune from liability, civil or criminal, that might otherwise result from the release of such information to the Department.

1988, c. 906, § 63.1-274.6; 1990, c. 836; 1991, cc. 545, 588; 1994, c. 665; 1997, cc. 796, 895; 2001, c. 573; 2002, c. 747; 2003, cc. 467, 929, 942; 2009, c. 713.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.