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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1985 

                        CHAPTER 131-S.F.No. 901 
           An act relating to human services; increasing 
          incentives for enforcing and collecting child support; 
          requiring child support or maintenance obligors to 
          file address or residence changes; amending Minnesota 
          Statutes 1984, sections 256.74, subdivisions 1 and 5; 
          256.87, subdivisions 1a and 3; 257.58, subdivision 1; 
          518.55, by adding a subdivision; 518.551, subdivision 
          7; 518.611, subdivisions 2, 3, 4, and 6, and by adding 
          a subdivision; 518.645; 543.20; repealing Minnesota 
          Statutes 1984, section 257.62, subdivision 4. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 256.74, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
    Subdivision 1.  [AMOUNT.] The amount of assistance which 
shall be granted to or on behalf of any dependent child and 
mother or other needy eligible relative caring for the dependent 
child shall be determined by the county agency in accordance 
with rules promulgated by the commissioner and shall be 
sufficient, when added to all other income and support available 
to the child, to provide the child with a reasonable subsistence 
compatible with decency and health.  The amount shall be based 
on the method of budgeting required in Public Law No. 97-35, 
Section 2315, 42 U.S.C. 602, as amended and federal regulations 
at 45 C.F.R. Section 233.  In making its determination the 
county agency shall disregard the following from family income: 
    (1) All of the earned income of each dependent child 
receiving aid to families with dependent children who is a 
full-time student or part-time student, and not a full-time 
employee, attending a school, college, or university, or a 
course of vocational or technical training designed to fit him 
for gainful employment; 
    (2) All educational grants and loans awarded pursuant to a 
federal law when public assistance was considered in making the 
award and the award was made on the basis of financial need; and 
that part of any other educational grant or loan which is used 
for educational purposes, such as tuition, fees, equipment, 
transportation and child care expenses necessary for school 
attendance;  
     (3) The first $75 of each individual's earned income.  In 
the case of an individual not engaged in full-time employment or 
not employed throughout the month the commissioner shall 
prescribe by rule a lesser amount to be disregarded.  For 
self-employed persons, the expenses directly related to 
producing goods and services and without which the goods and 
services could not be produced shall be disregarded pursuant to 
rules promulgated by the commissioner;  
     (4) An amount equal to the actual expenditures but not to 
exceed $160 for the care of each dependent child or 
incapacitated individual living in the same home and receiving 
aid.  In the case of a person not engaged in full-time 
employment or not employed throughout the month, the 
commissioner shall prescribe by rule a lesser amount to be 
disregarded; and 
     (5) Thirty dollars plus one-third of the remainder of each 
individual's earned income not already disregarded for 
individuals found otherwise eligible to receive aid or who have 
received aid in one of the four months before the month of 
application.  With respect to any month, the county welfare 
agency shall not disregard under this clause any earned income 
of any person who has: 
     (a) Reduced his earned income without good cause within 30 
days preceding any month in which an assistance payment is made; 
or 
     (b) Refused without good cause to accept an offer of 
suitable employment; or 
      (c) Left employment or reduced his earnings without good 
cause and applied for assistance so that he might later return 
to employment with the advantage of the income disregard; or 
      (d) Failed without good cause to make a timely report of 
earned income in accordance with rules promulgated by the 
commissioner of human services.  
     Persons who are already employed and who apply for 
assistance shall have their needs computed with full account 
taken of their earned and other income.  If earned and other 
income of the family is less than need, as determined on the 
basis of public assistance standards, the county agency shall 
determine the amount of the grant by applying the disregard of 
income provisions.  The county agency shall not disregard earned 
income for persons in a family if the total monthly earned and 
other income exceeds their needs, unless for any one of the four 
preceding months their needs were met in whole or in part by a 
grant payment.  
     The disregard of $30 and one-third of the remainder of 
earned income described in clause (5) shall be applied to the 
individual's income for a period not to exceed four consecutive 
months.  Any month in which the individual loses this disregard 
because of the provisions of clause (5)(a) to (5)(d) shall be 
considered as one of the four months.  To again qualify for this 
earned income disregard, the individual must not be a recipient 
of aid for a period of 12 consecutive months.  If an individual 
becomes ineligible for aid because this earned income disregard 
has been applied to income for four consecutive months and will 
no longer be applied to income, the local agency shall inform 
the individual of the medical assistance program, its standards 
of eligibility, and the circumstances under which the individual 
would be eligible for medical assistance.  
     (6) The commissioner shall increase the standard of need 
for persons with earned income in effect on January 1, 1982, by 
35 percent for each assistance unit.  The maximum amount paid to 
an assistance unit shall be no more than 74 percent of the 
increased standard of need.  Whenever the commissioner increases 
the maximum payment amount for all assistance units, the 
commissioner shall increase the maximum standard of need by an 
equal percentage.  
     To determine the amount of assistance to be paid to an 
assistance unit, net income shall be determined in a manner 
consistent with this chapter and applicable federal law.  Net 
earned income shall be subtracted from the increased standard of 
need for an assistance unit of the appropriate size and 
composition to determine the grant amount, except that the grant 
shall not exceed the standard of need in effect on January 1, 
1982 for an assistance unit of the same size and composition. 
Unearned income shall be subtracted from the maximum payment 
amount for an assistance unit of the appropriate size and 
composition to determine the grant amount.  
    Medical assistance eligibility for medically needy persons 
who are eligible for aid to families with dependent children 
shall be determined according to the standard of need in effect 
on January 1, 1982.  
     The first $50 of periodic support payments collected by the 
public authority responsible for child support enforcement from 
a person with a legal obligation to pay support for a member of 
the assistance unit shall be paid to the assistance unit within 
15 days of the collection of such periodic support payments and 
shall be disregarded in determining the amount of assistance. 
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 256.74, 
subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 5.  [ASSIGNMENT OF SUPPORT AND MAINTENANCE RIGHTS.] 
An applicant for assistance, or a recipient of assistance, under 
sections 256.72 to 256.87 or an applicant or recipient for whom 
foster care maintenance is provided under Title IV-E of the 
Social Security Act is considered to have assigned to the public 
agency responsible for child support enforcement at the time of 
application all rights to child support and maintenance from any 
other person the applicant may have in his own behalf or in the 
behalf of any other family member for whom application is 
made under sections 256.72 to 256.87 or Title IV-E.  The 
assignment:  
    (1) is effective as to both current and accrued child 
support and maintenance obligations;  
    (2) takes effect upon a determination that the applicant is 
eligible for assistance under sections 256.72 to 256.87 or that 
the applicant or family member is eligible for foster care 
maintenance under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act; 
    (3) terminates when an applicant ceases to receive 
assistance under sections 256.72 to 256.87 or when the applicant 
or family member ceases to receive foster care maintenance under 
Title IV-E of the Social Security Act, except with respect to 
the amount of any unpaid support or maintenance obligation, or 
both, accrued under the assignment.  
    Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 256.87, 
subdivision 1a, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 1a.  [CONTINUING SUPPORT CONTRIBUTIONS.] In addition 
to granting the county or state agency a money judgment, the 
court may, upon a motion or order to show cause, order 
continuing support contributions by a parent found able to 
reimburse the county or state agency.  Except as provided in 
subdivision 4, the order shall be effective for the period of 
time during which the recipient receives public assistance from 
any county or state agency and for 90 days five months 
thereafter the order shall require support according to chapter 
518.  An order for continuing contributions is reinstated 
without further hearing upon notice to the parent by any county 
or state agency that assistance is again being provided for the 
child of the parent under sections 256.72 to 256.87.  The notice 
shall be in writing and shall indicate that the parent may 
request a hearing for modification of the amount of support or 
maintenance. 
    Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 256.87, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [CONTINUING CONTRIBUTIONS TO FORMER RECIPIENT.] 
The order for continuing support contributions shall remain in 
effect following the 90 day five-month period after public 
assistance granted under sections 256.72 to 256.87 is terminated 
if:  
    (a) the former recipient files an affidavit with the court 
within 90 days five months of the termination of assistance 
requesting that the support order remain in effect;  
    (b) the public authority serves written notice of the 
filing by mail on the parent responsible for making the support 
payments at that parent's last known address and notice that the 
parent may move the court under section 518.64 to modify the 
order respecting the amount of support or maintenance; and 
    (c) the former recipient makes an application to authorizes 
use of the public authority's collection services.  
    Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 257.58, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
    Subdivision 1.  [ACTIONS FOR CHILDREN WITHOUT A PRESUMED 
FATHER.] Except for (a) an action brought by or on behalf of a 
child whose paternity has not been determined, and (b) an action 
brought by the public authority responsible for child support 
enforcement, if a child is over three years old when he or she 
first receives public assistance in the state of Minnesota, An 
action to determine the existence of the father and child 
relationship as to a child who has no presumed father under 
section 257.55 may not be brought later than three years after 
the birth of the child, or later than three years after August 
1, 1980, whichever is later.  An action brought by or on behalf 
of a child whose paternity has not been determined is not barred 
until one year after the child reaches the age of majority.  If 
a child is over three years old when he or she first receives 
public assistance in the state of Minnesota, an action brought 
by the public authority responsible for child support 
enforcement is not barred until three years after the public 
assistance is first provided in this state.  
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.55, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [NOTICE OF ADDRESS OR RESIDENCE CHANGE.] Every 
obligor shall notify the obligee and the public authority 
responsible for collection, if applicable, of a change of 
address or residence within 60 days of the address or residence 
change.  Every order for support or maintenance must contain a 
conspicuous notice of the requirements of this subdivision.  The 
court may waive or modify the requirements of this subdivision 
by order if necessary to protect the obligor from contact by the 
obligee. 
    Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.551, 
subdivision 7, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 7.  [SERVICE FEE.] When the public agency responsible 
for child support enforcement provides child support collection 
services either to a public assistance recipient or to a party 
who does not receive public assistance, the public agency may 
upon written notice to the obligor charge a monthly collection 
fee equivalent to the full monthly cost to the county of 
providing collection services, in addition to the amount of the 
child support which was ordered by the court.  The fee shall be 
deposited in the county general fund.  The service fee assessed 
is limited to ten percent of the monthly court ordered child 
support and shall not be assessed to obligors who are current in 
payment of the monthly court ordered child support.  No fee 
shall be imposed on the party who requests child support 
collection services An application fee not to exceed $5 shall be 
paid by the person who applies for child support and maintenance 
collection services, except persons who transfer from public 
assistance to nonpublic assistance status.  Fees assessed by 
state and federal tax agencies for collection of overdue support 
owed to or on behalf of a person not receiving public assistance 
must be imposed on the person for whom these services are 
provided. 
    However, the limitations of this subdivision on the 
assessment of fees shall not apply to the extent inconsistent 
with the requirements of federal law for receiving funds for the 
programs under Title IV-A and Title IV-D of the Social Security 
Act, 42. U.S.C. 601 to 613 and 42 U.S.C. 651 to 662.  
    Sec. 8.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.611, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 2.  [NOTICE TO OBLIGOR OF CONDITIONS OF INCOME 
WITHHOLDING.] Each order for withholding shall provide for a 
conspicuous notice to the obligor that:  
    (a) Withholding may shall result if the obligor fails to 
make the maintenance or support payments, and that no 
withholding shall be made until the following conditions are met:
    (a) (1) The obligee or the public authority determines that 
the obligor is at least 30 days in arrears;  
    (b) (2) The obligee or the public authority serves written 
notice of its determination of income withholding, showing 
arrearage, on the obligor at least 15 days before service of 
the determination notice of income withholding and a copy of the 
court's order for withholding on the payor of funds;  
    (c) (3) Within the 15-day period, the obligor has either 
failed to pay all arrearages or fails to move the court, under 
section 518.64, to modify the order respecting the amount of 
maintenance or support to deny withholding on the grounds that 
an arrearage of at least 30 days does not exist as of the date 
of the notice of income withholding, or on other grounds limited 
to mistakes of fact, and, ex parte, to stay service on the payor 
of funds until the motion to modify deny withholding is heard,.  
Within 45 days from the date of the notice of income 
withholding, the court shall hold the hearing on the motion to 
deny withholding and notify the parties of its decision; and 
    (d) (4) The obligee or the public authority serves a copy 
of the determination of arrearage notice of income withholding 
and a copy of the court's withholding order on the payor of 
funds.; and 
    (e) (5) The obligee shall also serve serves on the public 
authority a copy of the determination of arrearage notice of 
income withholding, a copy of the court's withholding order and, 
an application and the fee to use the public authority's 
collection services.  
    (b) To pay the arrearage specified in the notice of income 
withholding, the employer or payor of funds shall withhold from 
the obligor's income an additional amount equal to 20 percent of 
the monthly child support or maintenance obligation until the 
arrearage is paid.  
    (c) The obligor may, at any time, waive the written notice 
required by this subdivision.  
    (d) The obligor may move the court, under section 518.64, 
to modify the order respecting the amount of maintenance or 
support. 
    Sec. 9.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.611, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [MODIFICATION ORDERS WITHHOLDING HEARING.] An 
order issued after the hearing on the motion to modify under 
subdivision 2, paragraph (c), of this section, shall provide 
that payments be made outright by withholding.  The conditions 
precedent to withholding of subdivision 2 do not apply At the 
hearing to deny withholding, if the court finds that there was 
no mistake of fact, the court shall order income withholding to 
begin no later than the first pay period that occurs after 14 
days following the date of the hearing.  If the court finds that 
an arrearage of at least 30 days existed as of the date of the 
notice of income withholding, but finds a mistake in the amount 
of arrearage, the court shall order income withholding, but it 
shall correct the amount of arrearage to be withheld under 
subdivision 2, paragraph (b). 
    Sec. 10.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.611, 
subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 4.  [EFFECT OF ORDER.] Notwithstanding any law to the 
contrary, the order is binding on the employer, trustee, or 
other payor of the funds upon when service upon him of notice 
that it under subdivision 2 has been made.  Withholding must 
begin no later than the first pay period that occurs after 14 
days following the date of the notice.  An employer or other 
payor of funds in this state is required to withhold income 
according to court orders for withholding issued by other states 
or territories.  The payor shall withhold from the income 
payable to the obligor the amount specified in the order 
and amounts required under subdivision 2, paragraph (b) and 
shall remit, monthly or more frequently remit, the amounts 
withheld to the public authority.  Amounts received by the 
public authority which are in excess of public assistance 
expended for the party or for a child shall be remitted to the 
party.  An employer shall not discharge, or refuse to hire, or 
otherwise discipline an employee as a result of a wage or salary 
withholding authorized by this section.  The employer or other 
payor of funds shall be liable to the obligee for any amounts 
required to be withheld. 
    Sec. 11.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.611, 
subdivision 6, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 6.  [PRIORITY.] An order for withholding under this 
section or execution or garnishment upon a judgment for child 
support arrearages or preadjudicated expenses shall have 
priority over an attachment, execution, garnishment, or wage 
assignment unless otherwise ordered by the court and shall not 
be subject to the statutory limitations on amounts levied 
against the income of the obligor.  Amounts withheld from an 
employee's income must not exceed the maximum permitted under 
the Consumer Credit Protection Act, United States Code, title 
15, section 1673(b)(2).  If there is more than one withholding 
order on a single employee, the employer shall put them into 
effect in the order received up to the maximum allowed in the 
Consumer Credit Protection Act.  
    Sec. 12.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.611, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 9.  [FORMS.] The commissioner of human services shall 
prepare and make available to courts and obligors a form to be 
submitted by the obligor in support of a motion to deny 
withholding under this section.  The rulemaking provisions of 
chapter 14 shall not apply to the preparation of the form. 
    Sec. 13.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 518.645, is 
amended to read: 
    518.645 [FORM OF ORDER.] 
    Unless otherwise ordered by the court, an order for 
withholding of support or maintenance payments issued under this 
chapter shall be substantially in the following form:  
    IT IS ORDERED THAT:  
    1.  The sum of ..................... per ..........., 
representing child support and/or spousal maintenance, ordered 
by the Court, shall be withheld from the (Husband/Wife 
Respondent/Petitioner)'s income on .................. by 
(his/her) present employer or other payor of funds, 
................................., and any future employer or 
other payor of funds, and shall be remitted to: 
.........................., monthly or more frequently, in 
accordance with the provisions of Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 
518.  The file number above and the Obligor's name shall be 
included with each remittance.  
    2.  An additional amount equal to 20 percent of the amount 
required to be withheld by paragraph 1 shall be withheld from 
the income of the Obligor by the employer or payor until the 
entire arrearage in paragraph 3(b) is paid. 
    3.  The parties are notified that CHILD SUPPORT AND/OR 
MAINTENANCE WILL BE WITHHELD FROM INCOME ONLY AFTER ALL OF THE 
FOLLOWING CONDITIONS HAVE BEEN MET:  
    (a) ............... or the Obligee determines that the 
Obligor is at least thirty days in arrears in the payment of 
child support and/or spousal maintenance;  
    (b) .............. or the Obligee serves written notice of 
income withholding on the Obligor of its showing the 
determination that child support and/or maintenance payments are 
thirty days in arrears;  
    (c) Within fifteen days after service of the notice of 
income withholding, the Obligor either fails to pay all past due 
payments or to move the Court, Minnesota Statutes, Section 
518.64, to modify the order respecting the amount of child 
support and/or spousal maintenance to deny withholding on the 
grounds that an arrearage of at least 30 days does not exist as 
of the date of the notice of income withholding or on other 
grounds limited to mistakes of fact and, ex parte, to stay 
service of withholding on the employer or other payor of funds 
until the motion to modify deny withholding is heard.  Within 45 
days from the date of the notice of income withholding, the 
court shall hold the hearing on the motion to deny withholding 
and notify the parties of its decision; and 
    (d) Not sooner than fifteen 15 days after service of 
written notice in paragraph (b) of income withholding on the 
Obligor, .............. or the Obligee serves a copy of its 
determination of a thirty-day delinquency the notice of income 
withholding and a copy of the Court's withholding order on the 
employer or other payor of funds, who will then be obligated to 
withhold payments from income and forward the amount withheld to 
............ .  
    3. 4.  The parties and the employer or other payor of funds 
are further notified that NO EMPLOYER MAY DISCHARGE, SUSPEND, OR 
OTHERWISE PENALIZE OR DISCIPLINE AN EMPLOYEE BECAUSE THE 
EMPLOYER MUST WITHHOLD SUPPORT OR MAINTENANCE MONEY.  Minnesota 
Statutes, section 518.611. 
    5.  The payments shall begin to be withheld no later than 
the first pay period that occurs after 14 days following the 
date of mailing of the notice to the employer or other payor of 
funds in paragraph 3(d) and from that date the employer or other 
payor of funds is liable for amounts required to be withheld. 
    6.  This order for withholding takes priority over any 
attachment, execution, garnishment, or wage assignment levied 
against the income of the Obligor.  Amounts withheld are not 
subject to other statutory limitations on amounts levied against 
the income of the Obligor but must not exceed the maximum 
permitted under the federal Consumer Credit Protection Act, 
United States Code, title 15, section 1673(b)(2).  If there is 
more than one withholding order on a single Obligor, the 
employer or other payor of funds shall put them into effect in 
the order received, up to the maximum allowed under the Consumer 
Credit Protection Act.  
    7.  When the Obligor's employment is terminated or the 
periodic payment ends, the employer or other payor of funds is 
required to notify ......................... within 30 days of 
the termination date.  The notice must include the Obligor's 
home address of record and, if known, the name and address of 
the Obligor's new employer or other payor of funds. 
    4. 8.  If the Obligee serves the employer or other payor of 
funds under paragraph 2 3(d), the Obligee shall also serve the 
determination and order on ..............., together with an 
application and fee to use collection services.  
    5. 9.  Service of this Order shall be................... 
.............................................................. . 
    Sec. 14.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 543.20, is 
amended to read: 
    543.20 [PERSONAL JURISDICTION IN SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT CASES 
AND PATERNITY SUITS.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [SERVICE.] In addition to the methods of 
service of process provided in the rules of civil procedure, 
service of a summons, an order to show cause, or an order or 
judgment within this state may also be made upon an individual 
by delivering a copy to him or her personally at his or her 
place of employment or at a post-secondary education institution 
in which he or she is enrolled.  The employer shall make the 
individual available for the purpose of delivering a copy.  The 
post-secondary education institution must make the individual's 
class schedule available to the process server or make the 
individual available for the purpose of delivering a copy.  No 
employer or post-secondary education institution shall deny a 
process server admittance to the employer's or post-secondary 
education institution's premises for the purpose of making 
service under this section. 
    No service shall be allowed under this section unless such 
service is made personally on the individual.  
    Subd. 2.  [APPLICABILITY.] Service of an employee at a 
place of employment or of a student at a post-secondary 
education institution applies only to:  (a) summons in an action 
for dissolution, annulment, legal separation, or under the 
parentage act and under section 256.87; (b) orders to show cause 
under both section 256.87 and the revised uniform Reciprocal 
Enforcement of Support Act as well as for contempt of court for 
failure to pay child support; (c) petitions under the Domestic 
Abuse Act; and (d) motions, orders and judgments for the payment 
of child support when the court orders personal service.  
    Subd. 3.  [RETALIATION PROHIBITED.] An employer shall not 
discharge or otherwise discipline an employee, nor shall a 
post-secondary education institution dismiss or discipline a 
student as a result of service under this section.  
    Subd. 4.  [DEFINITION.] For purposes of this section 
"post-secondary education institution" means any state 
university, community college, area vocational technical 
institution, private college, private post-secondary school, or 
the University of Minnesota. 
    Sec. 15.  [REPEALER.] 
    Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 257.62, subdivision 4, is 
repealed. 
    Approved May 17, 1985