language to be deleted (2) new language
Laws of Minnesota 1993 CHAPTER 340-H.F.No. 1042 An act relating to human services; modifying provisions dealing with the administration, computation, and enforcement of child support; imposing penalties; amending Minnesota Statutes 1992, sections 136A.121, subdivision 2; 214.101, subdivision 1; 256.87, subdivisions 1, 1a, 3, and 5; 256.978; 256.979, by adding subdivisions; 256.9791, subdivisions 3 and 4; 257.66, subdivision 3; 257.67, subdivision 3; 349A.08, subdivision 8; 484.74, subdivision 1, as amended; 484.76, subdivision 1, as amended; 518.14; 518.171, subdivisions 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 10, and by adding a subdivision; 518.24; 518.54, subdivision 4; 518.551, subdivisions 1, 5, 5b, 7, 10, 12, and by adding a subdivision; 518.57, subdivision 1, and by adding a subdivision; 518.611, subdivision 4; 518.613, subdivision 1; 518.64, subdivisions 1, 2, 5, and 6; 548.09, subdivision 1; 548.091, subdivisions 1a and 3a; 588.20; 609.375, subdivisions 1 and 2; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapters 256; and 518; repealing Minnesota Statutes 1992, sections 256.979; and 609.37. BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: Section 1. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 136A.121, subdivision 2, is amended to read: Subd. 2. [ELIGIBILITY FOR GRANTS.] An applicant is eligible to be considered for a grant, regardless of the applicant's sex, creed, race, color, national origin, or ancestry, under sections 136A.095 to 136A.131 if the board finds that the applicant: (1) is a resident of the state of Minnesota; (2) is a graduate of a secondary school or its equivalent, or is 17 years of age or over, and has met all requirements for admission as a student to an eligible college or technical college of choice as defined in sections 136A.095 to 136A.131; (3) has met the financial need criteria established in Minnesota Rules; (4) is not in default, as defined by the board, of any federal or state student educational loan; and (5) is not more than 30 days in arrears for any child support payments owed to a public agency responsible for child support enforcement or, if the applicant is more than 30 days in arrears, is complying with a written payment
planagreement or order for arrearages. An agreement must provide for a repayment of arrearages at no less than 20 percent per month of the amount of the monthly child support obligation or no less than $30 per month if there is no current monthly child support obligation. Compliance means that payments are made by the payment date. The director and the commissioner of human services shall develop procedures to implement clause (5). Sec. 2. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 214.101, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [COURT ORDER; HEARING ON SUSPENSION.] (a) For purposes of this section, "licensing board" means a licensing board or other state agency that issues an occupational license. (b) If a licensing board receives an order from a court under section 518.551, subdivision 12, dealing with suspension of a license of a person found by the court to be in arrears in child support payments, the board shall, within 30 days of receipt of the court order, provide notice to the licensee and hold a hearing. If the board finds that the person is licensed by the board and evidence of full payment of arrearages found to be due by the court is not presented at the hearing, the board shall suspend the license unless it determines that probation is appropriate under subdivision 2. The only issues to be determined by the board are whether the person named in the court order is a licensee, whether the arrearages have been paid, and whether suspension or probation is appropriate. The board may not consider evidence with respect to the appropriateness of the court order or the ability of the person to comply with the order. The board may not lift the suspension until the licensee files with the board proof showing that the licensee is current in child support payments. Sec. 3. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.87, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [ACTIONS AGAINST PARENTS FOR ASSISTANCE FURNISHED.] A parent of a child is liable for the amount of assistance furnished under sections 256.031 to 256.0361, 256.72 to 256.87, or under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act or medical assistance under chapter 256, 256B, or 256D to and for the benefit of the child, including any assistance furnished for the benefit of the caretaker of the child, which the parent has had the ability to pay. Ability to pay must be determined according to chapter 518. The parent's liability is limited to the amount of assistance furnished duringthe two years immediately preceding the commencement of the action, except that where child support has been previously ordered, the state or county agency providing the assistance, as assignee of the obligee, shall be entitled to judgments for child support payments accruing within ten years preceding the date of the commencement of the action up to the full amount of assistance furnished. The action may be ordered by the state agency or county agency and shall be brought in the name of the county by the county attorney of the county in which the assistance was granted, or by the state agency against the parent for the recovery of the amount of assistance granted, together with the costs and disbursements of the action. Sec. 4. Minnesota Statutes 1992, 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. 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 five monthsthereafter. 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 256.031 to 256.0361, 256.72 to 256.87, or under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act or medical assistance under chapter 256, 256B, or 256D. 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. 5. Minnesota Statutes 1992, 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 five-monthperiod 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 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)unless the former recipient authorizes use of the public authority's collection servicesfiles an affidavit with the court requesting termination of the order. Sec. 6. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.87, subdivision 5, is amended to read: Subd. 5. [CHILD NOT RECEIVING ASSISTANCE.] A parentperson or entity having physical and legal custody of a dependent child not receiving assistance under sections 256.72 to 256.87 has a cause of action for child support against the child's absent parentparents. Upon an order to show cause and a motion served on the absent parent, the court shall order child support payments from the absent parent under chapter 518. Sec. 7. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.978, is amended to read: 256.978 [LOCATION OF PARENTS DESERTING THEIR CHILDREN, ACCESS TO RECORDS.] Subdivision 1. [REQUEST FOR INFORMATION.] The commissioner of human services, in order to carry out the child support enforcement program and to assist in the location of parents who have, or appear to have, deserted their childrenlocate a person to establish paternity, child support, or to enforce a child support obligation in arrears, may request information reasonably necessary to the inquiry from the records of all departments, boards, bureaus, or other agencies of this state, which shall, notwithstanding the provisions of section 268.12, subdivision 12, or any other law to the contrary, provide the information necessary for this purpose. Employers and, utility companies, insurance companies, financial institutions, and labor associations doing business in this state shall provide information as provided under subdivision 2 upon written request by an agency responsible for child support enforcement regarding individuals owing or allegedly owing a duty to support. A request for this information may be made to an employer when there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry is or was employed by the employer where the request is made. The request must include a statement that reasonable cause exists. Information to be released by utility companies is restricted to place of residence. Information to be released by employers is restricted to place of residence, employment status, and wage information.Information relative to the identity, whereabouts, employment, income, and property of a person owing or alleged to be owing an obligation of support may berequested and used or transmitted by the commissioner pursuant to the authority conferred by this section . The commissioner of human servicesmay make such informationbe made available only to public officials and agencies of this state and its political subdivisions and other states of the union and their political subdivisions who are seeking to enforce the support liability of parents or to locate parents who have, or appear to have, deserted their children. Any person who, pursuant to this section, obtains information from the department of revenue the confidentiality of which is protected by law shall not divulge the information except to the extent necessary for the administration ofThe commissioner may not release the information to an agency or political subdivision of another state unless the agency or political subdivision is directed to maintain the data consistent with its classification in this state. Information obtained under this section may not be released except to the extent necessary for the administration of the child support enforcement program or when otherwise authorized by law. Subd. 2. [ACCESS TO INFORMATION.] (a) A written request for information by the public authority responsible for child support may be made to: (1) employers when there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry is or was an employee of the employer. Information to be released by employers is limited to place of residence, employment status, wage information, and social security number; (2) utility companies when there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry is or was a retail customer of the utility company. Customer information to be released by utility companies is limited to place of residence, home telephone, work telephone, source of income, employer and place of employment, and social security number; (3) insurance companies when there is an arrearage of child support and there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry is or was receiving funds either in the form of a lump sum or periodic payments. Information to be released by insurance companies is limited to place of residence, home telephone, work telephone, employer, and amounts and type of payments made to the subject of the inquiry; (4) labor organizations when there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry is or was a member of the labor association. Information to be released by labor associations is limited to place of residence, home telephone, work telephone, and current and past employment information; and (5) financial institutions when there is an arrearage of child support and there is reasonable cause to believe that the subject of the inquiry has or has had accounts, stocks, loans, certificates of deposits, treasury bills, life insurance policies, or other forms of financial dealings with the institution. Information to be released by the financial institution is limited to place of residence, home telephone, work telephone, identifying information on the type of financial relationships, current value of financial relationships, and current indebtedness of the subject with the financial institution. (b) For purposes of this subdivision, utility companies include companies that provide electrical, telephone, natural gas, propane gas, oil, coal, or cable television services to retail customers. The term financial institution includes banks, savings and loans, credit unions, brokerage firms, mortgage companies, and insurance companies. Subd. 3. [IMMUNITY.] A person who releases information to the public authority as authorized under this section is immune from liability for release of the information. Sec. 8. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.979, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 5. [PATERNITY ESTABLISHMENT AND CHILD SUPPORT ORDER MODIFICATION BONUS INCENTIVES.] (a) A bonus incentive program is created to increase the number of paternity establishments and modifications of child support orders done by county child support enforcement agencies. (b) A bonus must be awarded to a county child support agency for each child for which the agency completes a paternity establishment through judicial, administrative, or expedited processes and for each instance in which the agency reviews a case for a modification of the child support order. (c) The rate of bonus incentive is $100 for each paternity establishment and $50 for each review for modification of a child support order. Sec. 9. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.979, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 6. [CLAIMS FOR BONUS INCENTIVE.] (a) The commissioner of human services and the county agency shall develop procedures for the claims process and criteria using automated systems where possible. (b) Only one county agency may receive a bonus per paternity establishment or child support order modification. The county agency making the initial preparations for the case resulting in the establishment of paternity or modification of an order is the county agency entitled to claim the bonus incentive, even if the case is transferred to another county agency prior to the time the order is established or modified. (c) Disputed claims must be submitted to the commissioner of human services and the commissioner's decision is final. (d) For purposes of this section, "case" means a family unit for whom the county agency is providing child support enforcement services. Sec. 10. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.979, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 7. [DISTRIBUTION.] (a) Bonus incentives must be issued to the county agency quarterly, within 45 days after the last day of each quarter for which a bonus incentive is being claimed, and must be paid in the order in which claims are received. (b) Bonus incentive funds under this section must be reinvested in the county child support enforcement program and a county may not reduce funding of the child support enforcement program by the amount of the bonus earned. (c) The county agency shall repay any bonus erroneously issued. (d) A county agency shall maintain a record of bonus incentives claimed and received for each quarter. Sec. 11. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.979, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 8. [MEDICAL PROVIDER REIMBURSEMENT.] (a) A fee to the providers of medical services is created for the purpose of increasing the numbers of signed and notarized recognition of parentage forms completed in the medical setting. (b) A fee of $25 shall be paid to each medical provider for each properly completed recognition of parentage form sent to the department of vital statistics. (c) The office of vital statistics shall make the bonus payment of $25 to each medical provider and notify the department of human services quarterly of the numbers of completed forms received and the amounts paid. (d) The department of human services shall remit quarterly to the office of vital statistics the sums paid to each medical provider for the number of signed recognition of parentage forms completed by that medical provider and sent to the office of vital statistics. (e) The commissioners of the department of human services and the department of health shall develop procedures for the implementation of this provision. (f) Payments will be made to the medical provider within the limit of available appropriations. Sec. 12. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.9791, subdivision 3, is amended to read: Subd. 3. [ELIGIBILITY; REPORTING REQUIREMENTS.] (a) In order for a county to be eligible to claim a bonus incentive payment, the county agency must report to the commissioner, no later than August 1 of each fiscal year,provide the required information for each public assistance case no later than June 30 of each year to determine eligibility. The public authority shall use the information to establish for each county the number of cases as of June 30 of the preceding fiscal yearin which (1) the court has established an obligation for coverage by the obligor, and (2) coverage was in effect as of June 30. The ratio resulting when the number of cases reported under (2) is divided by the number of cases reported under (1) shall be used to determine the amount of the bonus incentive according to subdivision 4.(b) A county that fails to submitprovide the required information by August 1June 30 of each fiscal year is not eligible for any bonus payments under this section for that fiscal year. Sec. 13. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.9791, subdivision 4, is amended to read: Subd. 4. [RATE OF BONUS INCENTIVE.] The rate of the bonus incentive shall be determined according to paragraphsparagraph (a) to (c). (a) When a county agency has identified or enforced coverage in up to and including 50 percent of its cases, the county shall receive $15$50 for each additional person for whom coverage is identified or enforced. (b) When a county agency has identified or enforced coverage in more than 50 percent but less than 80 percent of its cases, the county shall receive $20 for each person for whom coverage is identified or enforced. (c) When a county agency has identified or enforced coverage in 80 percent or more of its cases, the county shall receive $25 for each person for whom coverage is identified or enforced. (d)Bonus payments according to paragraphsparagraph (a) to (c)are limited to one bonus for each covered person each time the county agency identifies or enforces previously unidentified health insurance coverage and apply only to coverage identified or enforced after July 1, 1990. Sec. 14. [256.9792] [ARREARAGE COLLECTION PROJECTS.] Subdivision 1. [ARREARAGE COLLECTIONS.] Arrearage collection projects are created to increase the revenue to the state and counties, reduce AFDC expenditures for former public assistance cases, and increase payments of arrearages to persons who are not receiving public assistance by submitting cases for arrearage collection to collection entities, including but not limited to, the department of revenue and private collection agencies. Subd. 2. [DEFINITIONS.] (a) The definitions in this subdivision apply to this section: (b) "Public assistance arrearage case" means a case where current support may be due, no payment, with the exception of tax offset, has been made within the last 90 days, and the arrearages are assigned to the public agency pursuant to section 256.74, subdivision 5. (c) "Public authority" means the public authority responsible for child support enforcement. (d) "Nonpublic assistance arrearage case" means a support case where arrearages have accrued that have not been assigned pursuant to section 256.74, subdivision 5. Subd. 3. [AGENCY PARTICIPATION.] (a) The collection remedy under this section is in addition to and not in substitution for any other remedy available by law to the public authority. The public authority remains responsible for the case even after collection efforts are referred to the department of revenue, a private agency, or other collection entity. (b) The department of revenue, a private agency, or other collection entity may not claim collections made on a case submitted by the public authority for a state tax offset under chapter 270A as a collection for the purposes of this project. Subd. 4. [ELIGIBLE CASES.] (a) For a case to be eligible for a collection project, the criteria in paragraphs (b) and (c) must be met. Any case from a county participating in the collections project meeting the criteria under this subdivision must be subcommitted for collection. (b) Notice must be sent to the debtor, as defined in section 270A.03, subdivision 4, at the debtor's last known address at least 30 days before the date the collections effort is transferred. The notice must inform the debtor that the department of revenue or a private collections agency will use enforcement and collections remedies and may charge a fee of up to 30 percent of the arrearages. The notice must advise the debtor of the right to contest the debt on grounds limited to mistakes of fact. The debtor may contest the debt by submitting a written request for review to the public authority within 21 days of the date of the notice. (c) The arrearages owed must be based on a court or administrative order. The arrearages to be collected must be at least $100 and must be at least 90 days past due. For nonpublic assistance cases referred to private agencies, the arrearages must be a docketed judgment under sections 548.09 and 548.091. Subd. 5. [COUNTY PARTICIPATION.] (a) The commissioner of human services shall designate the counties to participate in the projects, after requesting counties to volunteer for the projects. (b) The commissioner of human services shall designate which counties shall submit cases to the department of revenue, a private collection agency, or other collection entity. Subd. 6. [FEES.] A collection fee set by the commissioner of human services shall be charged to the person obligated to pay the arrearages. The collection fee is in addition to the amount owed, and must be deposited by the commissioner of revenue in the state treasury and credited to the general fund to cover the costs of administering the program or retained by the private agency or other collection entity to cover the costs of administering the collection services. Subd. 7. [CONTRACTS.] (a) The commissioner of human services may contract with the commissioner of revenue, private agencies, or other collection entities to implement the projects, charge fees, and exchange necessary information. (b) The commissioner of human services may provide an advance payment to the commissioner of revenue for collection services to be repaid to the department of human services out of subsequent collection fees. (c) Summary reports of collections, fees, and other costs charged shall be submitted monthly to the state office of child support enforcement. Subd. 8. [REMEDIES.] (a) The commissioner of revenue is authorized to use the tax collection remedies in sections 270.06, clause (7), 270.69 to 270.72, and 290.92, subdivision 23, and tax return information to collect arrearages. (b) Liens arising under paragraph (a) shall be perfected under the provisions of section 270.69. The lien may be filed as long as the time period allowed by law for collecting the arrearages has not expired. The lien shall attach to all property of the debtor within the state, both real and personal under the provisions of section 270.69. The lien shall be enforced under the provisions in section 270.69 relating to state tax liens. Sec. 15. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 257.66, subdivision 3, is amended to read: Subd. 3. [JUDGMENT; ORDER.] The judgment or order shall contain provisions concerning the duty of support, the custody of the child, the name of the child, visitation privileges with the child, the furnishing of bond or other security for the payment of the judgment, or any other matter in the best interest of the child. Custody and visitation and all subsequent motions related to them shall proceed and be determined under section 257.541. The remaining matters and all subsequent motions related to them shall proceed and be determined in accordance with chapter 518. The judgment or order may direct the appropriate party to pay all or a proportion of the reasonable expenses of the mother's pregnancy and confinement, after consideration of the relevant facts, including the relative financial means of the parents; the earning ability of each parent; and any health insurance policies held by either parent, or by a spouse or parent of the parent, which would provide benefits for the expenses incurred by the mother during her pregnancy and confinement. Remedies available for the collection and enforcement of child support apply to confinement costs and are considered additional child support. Sec. 16. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 257.67, subdivision 3, is amended to read: Subd. 3. Willful failure to obey the judgment or order of the court is a civilcontempt of the court. All remedies for the enforcement of judgments apply including those available under chapters 518 and 518C and sections 518C.01 to 518C.36 and256.871 to 256.878. Sec. 17. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 349A.08, subdivision 8, is amended to read: Subd. 8. [WITHHOLDING OF DELINQUENT STATE TAXES OR OTHER DEBTS.] The director shall report the name, address, and social security number of each winner of a lottery prize of $1,000$600 or more to the department of revenue to determine whether the person who has won the prize is delinquent in payment of state taxes or owes a debt as defined in section 270A.03, subdivision 5. If the person is delinquent in payment of state taxes or owes a debt as defined in section 270A.03, subdivision 5, the director shall withhold the delinquent amount from the person's prize for remittance to the department of revenue for payment of the delinquent taxes or distribution to a claimant agency in accordance with chapter 270A. Section 270A.10 applies to the priority of claims. Sec. 18. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 484.74, subdivision 1, as amended by Laws 1993, chapter 192, section 96, if enacted, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [AUTHORIZATION.] Except for good cause shown,In litigation involving an amount in excess of $7,500 in controversy, the presiding judge shallmay, by order, direct the parties to enter nonbinding alternative dispute resolution. Alternatives may include private trials, neutral expert fact-finding, mediation, minitrials, and other forms of alternative dispute resolution. The guidelines for the various alternatives must be established by the presiding judge and must emphasize early and inexpensive exchange of information and case evaluation in order to facilitate settlement. Sec. 19. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 484.76, subdivision 1, as amended by Laws 1993, chapter 192, section 97, if enacted, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [GENERAL.] The supreme court shall establish a statewide alternative dispute resolution program for the resolution of civil cases filed with the courts. The supreme court shall adopt rules governing practice, procedure, and jurisdiction for alternative dispute resolution programs established under this section. Except for matters involving family law the rules shall require the use of nonbinding alternative dispute resolution processes in all civil cases, except for good cause shown by the presiding judge, and must provide an equitable means for the payment of fees and expenses for the use of alternative dispute resolution processes. Sec. 20. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.14, is amended to read: 518.14 [COSTS AND DISBURSEMENTS AND ATTORNEY FEES.] In a proceeding under this chapter, the court shall award attorney fees, costs, and disbursements in an amount necessary to enable a party to carry on or contest the proceeding, provided it finds: (1) that the fees are necessary for the good-faith assertion of the party's rights in the proceeding and will not contribute unnecessarily to the length and expense of the proceeding; (2) that the party from whom fees, costs, and disbursements are sought has the means to pay them; and (3) that the party to whom fees, costs, and disbursements are awarded does not have the means to pay them. Nothing in this section precludes the court from awarding, in its discretion, additional fees, costs, and disbursements against a party who unreasonably contributes to the length or expense of the proceeding. Fees, costs, and disbursements provided for in this section may be awarded at any point in the proceeding, including a modification proceeding under sections 518.18 and 518.64. The court may adjudge costs and disbursements against either party. The court may authorize the collection of money awarded by execution, or out of property sequestered, or in any other manner within the power of the court. An award of attorney's fees made by the court during the pendency of the proceeding or in the final judgment survives the proceeding and if not paid by the party directed to pay the same may be enforced as above provided or by a separate civil action brought in the attorney's own name. If the proceeding is dismissed or abandoned prior to determination and award of attorney's fees, the court may nevertheless award attorney's fees upon the attorney's motion. The award shall also survive the proceeding and may be enforced in the same manner as last above provided. Sec. 21. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [ORDER.] Unless the obligee has comparable or better group dependent health insurance coverage available at a more reasonable cost,(a) The court shall order the obligorparty with the better group dependent health and dental insurance coverage to name the minor child as beneficiary on any health and dental insurance plan that is comparable to or better than a number two qualified plan and available to the obligorparty on a group basis or through an employer or union. "Health insurance coverage" as used in this section does not include medical assistance provided under chapter 256, 256B, or 256D. (b) If the court finds that dependent health or dental insurance is not available to the obligor or obligee on a group basis or through an employer or union, or that the group insurer is not accessible to the obligee, the court may require the obligor (1) to obtain other dependent health or dental insurance, or(2) to be liable for reasonable and necessary medical or dental expenses of the child, or (3) to pay no less than $50 per month to be applied to the medical and dental expenses of the children or to the cost of health insurance dependent coverage. (c) If the court finds that the available dependent health or dental insurance required to be obtained by the obligordoes not pay all the reasonable and necessary medical or dental expenses of the child, or that the dependent health or dental insurance available to the obligee does not pay all the reasonable and necessary medical or dental expenses of the child,including any existing or anticipated extraordinary medical expenses, and the court finds that the obligor has the financial ability to contribute to the payment of these medical or dental expenses, the court shall require the obligor to be liable for all or a portion of the medical or dental expenses of the child not covered by the required health or dental plan. Medical and dental expenses include, but are not limited to, necessary orthodontia and eye care, including prescription lenses. (d) If the obligor is employed by a self-insured employer subject only to the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) of 1974, and the insurance benefit plan meets the above requirements, the court shall order the obligor to enroll the dependents within 30 days of the court order effective date or be liable for all medical and dental expenses occurring while coverage is not in effect. If enrollment in the ERISA plan is precluded by exclusionary clauses, the court shall order the obligor to obtain other coverage or make payments as provided in paragraph (b) or (c). (e) Unless otherwise agreed by the parties and approved by the court, if the court finds that the obligee is not receiving public assistance for the child and has the financial ability to contribute to the cost of medical and dental expenses for the child, including the cost of insurance, the court shall order the obligee and obligor to each assume a portion of these expenses based on their proportionate share of their total net income as defined in section 518.54, subdivision 6. (f) Payments ordered under this section are subject to section 518.611. An obligee who fails to apply payments received to the medical expenses of the dependents may be found in contempt of this order. Sec. 22. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 2, is amended to read: Subd. 2. [SPOUSAL OR EX-SPOUSAL COVERAGE.] The court shall require the obligor to provide dependent health and dental insurance for the benefit of the obligee if it is available at no additional cost to the obligor and in this case the provisions of this section apply. Sec. 23. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 2a. [EMPLOYER AND OBLIGOR NOTICE.] If an individual is hired for employment, the employer shall request that the individual disclose whether the individual has court-ordered medical support obligations that are required by law to be withheld from income and the terms of the court order, if any. The employer shall request that the individual disclose whether the individual has been ordered by a court to provide health and dental dependent insurance coverage. The individual shall disclose this information at the time of hiring. If an individual discloses that medical support is required to be withheld, the employer shall begin withholding according to the terms of the order and pursuant to section 518.611, subdivision 8. If an individual discloses an obligation to obtain health and dental dependent insurance coverage and coverage is available through the employer, the employer shall make all application processes known to the individual upon hiring and enroll the employee and dependent in the plan pursuant to subdivision 3. Sec. 24. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 3, is amended to read: Subd. 3. [IMPLEMENTATION.] A copy of the court order for insurance coverage shall be forwarded to the obligor's employer or union by the obligee or the public authority responsible for support enforcement only when ordered by the court or when the following conditions are met: (1) the obligor fails to provide written proof to the obligee or the public authority, within 30 days of receivingthe effective noticedate of the court order, that the insurance has been obtained or that application for insurability has been made; (2) the obligee or the public authority serves written notice of its intent to enforce medical support on the obligor by mail at the obligor's last known post office address; and (3) the obligor fails within 15 days after the mailing of the notice to provide written proof to the obligee or the public authority that the insurance coverage existed as of the date of mailing. The employer or union shall forward a copy of the order to the health and dental insurance plan offered by the employer. Sec. 25. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 4, is amended to read: Subd. 4. [EFFECT OF ORDER.] (a) The order is binding on the employer or union and the health and dental insurance plan when service under subdivision 3 has been made. Upon receipt of the order, or upon application of the obligor pursuant to the order, the employer or union and its health and dental insurance plan shall enroll the minor child as a beneficiary in the group insurance plan and withhold any required premium from the obligor's income or wages. If more than one plan is offered by the employer or union, the child shall be enrolled in the insurance plan in which the obligor is enrolled or the least costly plan otherwise available to the obligor that is comparable to a number two qualified plan. (b) An employer or union that willfully fails to comply with the order is liable for any health or dental expenses incurred by the dependents during the period of time the dependents were eligible to be enrolled in the insurance program, and for any other premium costs incurred because the employer or union willfully failed to comply with the order. An employer or union that fails to comply with the order is subject to contempt under section 44 and is also subject to a fine of $500 to be paid to the obligee or public authority. Fines paid to the public authority are designated for child support enforcement services. (c) Failure of the obligor to execute any documents necessary to enroll the dependent in the group health and dental insurance plan will not affect the obligation of the employer or union and group health and dental insurance plan to enroll the dependent in a plan for which other eligibility requirements are met. Information and authorization provided by the public authority responsible for child support enforcement, or by the custodial parent or guardian, is valid for the purposes of meeting enrollment requirements of the health plan. The insurance coverage for a child eligible under subdivision 5 shall not be terminated except as authorized in subdivision 5. Sec. 26. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 6, is amended to read: Subd. 6. [INSURER REIMBURSEMENT; CORRESPONDENCE AND NOTICE.] (a) The signature of the custodial parent of the insured dependent is a valid authorization to the insurer for purposes of processing an insurance reimbursement payment to the provider of the medical services or to the custodial parent if medical services have been prepaid by the custodial parent. (b) The insurer shall send copies of all correspondence regarding the insurance coverage to both parents. When an order for dependent insurance coverage is in effect and the obligor's employment is terminated, or the insurance coverage is terminated, the insurer shall notify the obligee within ten days of the termination date with notice of conversion privileges. Sec. 27. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 7, is amended to read: Subd. 7. [RELEASE OF INFORMATION.] When an order for dependent insurance coverage is in effect, the obligor's employer or, union, or insurance agent shall release to the obligee or the public authority, upon request, information on the dependent coverage, including the name of the insurer. Notwithstanding any other law, information reported pursuant to section 268.121 shall be released to the public agency responsible for support enforcement that is enforcing an order for medical or dental insurance coverage under this section. The public agency responsible for support enforcement is authorized to release to the obligor's insurer or employer information necessary to obtain or enforce medical support. Sec. 28. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 8, is amended to read: Subd. 8. [OBLIGOR LIABILITY.] The(a) An obligor thatwho fails to maintain themedical or dental insurance for the benefit of the children as ordered shall beor fails to provide other medical support as ordered is liable to the obligee for any medical or dental expenses incurred from the effective date of the court order, including health and dental insurance premiums paid by the obligee because of the obligor's failure to obtain coverage as ordered. Proof of failure to maintain insurance or noncompliance with an order to provide other medical support constitutes a showing of increased need by the obligee pursuant to section 518.64 and provides a basis for a modification of the obligor's child support order. (b) Payments for services rendered to the dependents that are directed to the obligor, in the form of reimbursement by the insurer, must be endorsed over to and forwarded to the vendor or custodial parent or public authority when the reimbursement is not owed to the obligor. An obligor retaining insurance reimbursement not owed to the obligor may be found in contempt of this order and held liable for the amount of the reimbursement. Upon written verification by the insurer of the amounts paid to the obligor, the reimbursement amount is subject to all enforcement remedies available under subdivision 10. Sec. 29. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.171, subdivision 10, is amended to read: Subd. 10. [ENFORCEMENT.] Remedies available for the collection and enforcement of child support apply to medical support. For the purpose of enforcement, the costs of individual or group health or hospitalization coverage, dental coverage, all medical costs ordered by the court to be paid by the obligor, including health and dental insurance premiums paid by the obligee because of the obligor's failure to obtain coverage as ordered or liabilities established pursuant to subdivision 8, are additional child support. Sec. 30. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.24, is amended to read: 518.24 [SECURITY; SEQUESTRATION; CONTEMPT.] In all cases when maintenance or support payments are ordered, the court may require sufficient security to be given for the payment of them according to the terms of the order. Upon neglect or refusal to give security, or upon failure to pay the maintenance or support, the court may sequester the obligor's personal estate and the rents and profits of real estate of the obligor, and appoint a receiver of them. The court may cause the personal estate and the rents and profits of the real estate to be applied according to the terms of the order. The obligor is presumed to have an income from a source sufficient to pay the maintenance or support order. A child support or maintenance order constitutes prima facie evidence that the obligor has the ability to pay the award. If the obligor disobeys the order, it is prima facie evidence of contempt. Sec. 31. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.54, subdivision 4, is amended to read: Subd. 4. [SUPPORT MONEY; CHILD SUPPORT.] "Support money" or "child support" means: (1) an award in a dissolution, legal separation, orannulment, or parentage proceeding for the care, support and education of any child of the marriage or of the parties to the annulmentproceeding; or (2) a contribution by parents ordered under section 256.87. Sec. 32. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [SCOPE; PAYMENT TO PUBLIC AGENCY.] (a) This section applies to all proceedings involving an award of child support. (b) The court shall direct that all payments ordered for maintenance and support be made to the public agency responsible for child support enforcement so long as the obligee is receiving or has applied for public assistance, or has applied for child support and maintenance collection services. Public authorities responsible for child support enforcement may act on behalf of other public authorities responsible for child support enforcement. This includes the authority to represent the legal interests of or execute documents on behalf of the other public authority in connection with the establishment, enforcement, and collection of child support, maintenance, or medical support, and collection on judgments. Amounts received by the public agency responsible for child support enforcement greater than the amount granted to the obligee shall be remitted to the obligee. Sec. 33. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, subdivision 5, is amended to read: Subd. 5. [NOTICE TO PUBLIC AUTHORITY; GUIDELINES.] (a) The petitioner shall notify the public authority of all proceedings for dissolution, legal separation, determination of parentage or for the custody of a child, if either party is receiving aid to families with dependent children or applies for it subsequent to the commencement of the proceeding. After receipt of the notice, the court shall set child support as provided in this subdivision. The court may order either or both parents owing a duty of support to a child of the marriage to pay an amount reasonable or necessary for the child's support, without regard to marital misconduct. The court shall approve a child support stipulation of the parties if each party is represented by independent counsel, unless the stipulation does not meet the conditions of paragraph (h). In other cases the court shall determine and order child support in a specific dollar amount in accordance with the guidelines and the other factors set forth in paragraph (b) and any departure therefrom. The court may also order the obligor to pay child support in the form of a percentage share of the obligor's net bonuses, commissions, or other forms of compensation, in addition to, or if the obligor receives no base pay, in lieu of, an order for a specific dollar amount. (b) The court shall derive a specific dollar amount for child support by multiplying the obligor's net income by the percentage indicated by the following guidelines: Net Income Per Number of Children Month of Obligor 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 or more $400$550 and Below Order based on the ability of the obligor to provide support at these income levels, or at higher levels, if the obligor has the earning ability. $401 - 500 14% 17% 20% 22% 24% 26% 28% $501 - 550 15% 18% 21% 24% 26% 28% 30%$551 - 600 16% 19% 22% 25% 28% 30% 32% $601 - 650 17% 21% 24% 27% 29% 32% 34% $651 - 700 18% 22% 25% 28% 31% 34% 36% $701 - 750 19% 23% 27% 30% 33% 36% 38% $751 - 800 20% 24% 28% 31% 35% 38% 40% $801 - 850 21% 25% 29% 33% 36% 40% 42% $851 - 900 22% 27% 31% 34% 38% 41% 44% $901 - 950 23% 28% 32% 36% 40% 43% 46% $951 - 1000 24% 29% 34% 38% 41% 45% 48% $1001- 400025% 30% 35% 39% 43% 47% 50% 5,000 or the amount in effect under paragraph (k) Guidelines for support for an obligor with a monthly income of $4,001 or morein excess of the income limit currently in effect under paragraph (k) shall be the same dollar amounts as provided for in the guidelines for an obligor with a monthly income of $4,000equal to the limit in effect. Net Income defined as: Total monthly income less *(i) Federal Income Tax *(ii) State Income Tax (iii) Social Security Deductions (iv) Reasonable Pension Deductions *Standard Deductions apply- (v) Union Dues use of tax tables (vi) Cost of Dependent Health recommended Insurance Coverage (vii) Cost of Individual or Group Health/Hospitalization Coverage or an Amount for Actual Medical Expenses (viii) A Child Support or Maintenance Order that is Currently Being Paid. "Net income" does not include: (1) the income of the obligor's spouse, but does include in-kind payments received by the obligor in the course of employment, self-employment, or operation of a business if the payments reduce the obligor's living expenses; or (2) compensation received by a party for employment in excess of a 40-hour work week, provided that: (i) support is nonetheless ordered in an amount at least equal to the guidelines amount based on income not excluded under this clause; and (ii) the party demonstrates, and the court finds, that: (A) the excess employment began after the filing of the petition for dissolution; (B) the excess employment reflects an increase in the work schedule or hours worked over that of the two years immediately preceding the filing of the petition; (C) the excess employment is voluntary and not a condition of employment; (D) the excess employment is in the nature of additional, part-time or overtime employment compensable by the hour or fraction of an hour; and (E) the party's compensation structure has not been changed for the purpose of affecting a support or maintenance obligation. The court shall review the work related and education related child care costs of the custodial parent and shall allocate the costs to each parent in proportion to each parent's income after the transfer of child support, unless the allocation would be substantially unfair to either parent. The cost of child care for purposes of this section is determined by subtracting the amount of any federal and state income tax credits available to a parent from the actual cost paid for child care. The amount allocated for child care expenses is considered child support. (b)(c) In addition to the child support guidelines, the court shall take into consideration the following factors in setting or modifying child support or in determining whether to deviate from the guidelines: (1) all earnings, income, and resources of the parents, including real and personal property, but excluding income from excess employment of the obligor or obligee that meets the criteria of paragraph (a)(b), clause (2)(ii); (2) the financial needs and resources, physical and emotional condition, and educational needs of the child or children to be supported; (3) the standards of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved, but recognizing that the parents now have separate households; (4) the amount of the aid to families with dependent children grant for the child or children; (5)which parent receives the income taxation dependency exemption and what financial benefit the parent receives from it; and (6)(5) the parents' debts as provided in paragraph (c)(d). (c)(d) In establishing or modifying a support obligation, the court may consider debts owed to private creditors, but only if: (1) the right to support has not been assigned under section 256.74; (2) the court determines that the debt was reasonably incurred for necessary support of the child or parent or for the necessary generation of income. If the debt was incurred for the necessary generation of income, the court shall consider only the amount of debt that is essential to the continuing generation of income; and (3) the party requesting a departure produces a sworn schedule of the debts, with supporting documentation, showing goods or services purchased, the recipient of them, the amount of the original debt, the outstanding balance, the monthly payment, and the number of months until the debt will be fully paid. (d)(e) Any schedule prepared under paragraph (c)(d), clause (3), shall contain a statement that the debt will be fully paid after the number of months shown in the schedule, barring emergencies beyond the party's control. (e)(f) Any further departure below the guidelines that is based on a consideration of debts owed to private creditors shall not exceed 18 months in duration, after which the support shall increase automatically to the level ordered by the court. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit one or more step increases in support to reflect debt retirement during the 18-month period. (f) Where(g) If payment of debt is ordered pursuant to this section, the payment shall be ordered to be in the nature of child support. (g)(h) Nothing shall preclude the court from receiving evidence on the above factors to determine if the guidelines should be exceeded or modified in a particular case. (h)(i) The guidelines in this subdivision are a rebuttable presumption and shall be used in all cases when establishing or modifying child support. If the court does not deviate from the guidelines, the court shall make written findings concerning the amount of the obligor's income used as the basis for the guidelines calculation and any other significant evidentiary factors affecting the determination of child support. If the court deviates from the guidelines, the court shall make written findings giving the reasons for the deviation and shall specifically address the criteria in paragraph (b) and how the deviation serves the best interest of the child. The provisions of this paragraph apply whether or not the parties are each represented by independent counsel and have entered into a written agreement. The court shall review stipulations presented to it for conformity to the guidelines and the court is not required to conduct a hearing, but the parties shall provide the documentation of earnings required under subdivision 5b. (j) If the child support payments are assigned to the public agency under section 256.74, the court may not deviate downward from the child support guidelines unless the court specifically finds that the failure to deviate downward would impose an extreme hardship on the obligor. (k) The dollar amount of the income limit for application of the guidelines must be adjusted on July 1 of every even-numbered year to reflect cost-of-living changes. The supreme court shall select the index for the adjustment from the indices listed in section 518.641. The state court administrator shall make the changes in the dollar amount required by this paragraph available to courts and the public on or before April 30 of the year in which the amount is to change. Sec. 34. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, subdivision 5b, is amended to read: Subd. 5b. [DETERMINATION OF INCOME.] (a) The parties shall timely serve and file documentation of earnings and income. When there is a prehearing conference, the court must receive the documentation of income at least ten days prior to the prehearing conference. Documentation of earnings and income also includes, but is not limited to, pay stubs for the most recent three months, employer statements, or statement of receipts and expenses if self-employed. Documentation of earnings and income also includes copies of each parent's most recent federal tax returns, including W-2 forms, 1099 forms, unemployment compensation statements, workers' compensation statements, and all other documents evidencing income as received that provide verification of income over a longer period. (b) In addition to the requirements of paragraph (a), at any time after an action seeking child support has been commenced or when a child support order is in effect, a party or the public authority may require the other party to give them a copy of the party's most recent federal tax returns that were filed with the Internal Revenue Service. The party shall provide a copy of the tax returns within 30 days of receipt of the request unless the request is not made in good faith. A request under this paragraph may not be made more than once every two years, in the absence of good cause. (c) If a parent under the jurisdiction of the court does not appear at a court hearing after proper notice of the time and place of the hearing, the court shall set income for that parent based on credible evidence before the court or in accordance with paragraph (c)(d). Credible evidence may include documentation of current or recent income, testimony of the other parent concerning recent earnings and income levels, and the parent's wage reports filed with the Minnesota department of jobs and training under section 268.121. (c)(d) If the court finds that a parent is voluntarily unemployed or underemployed, child support shall be calculated based on a determination of imputed income. A parent is not considered voluntarily unemployed or underemployed upon a showing by the parent that the unemployment or underemployment: (1) is temporary and will ultimately lead to an increase in income; or (2) represents a bona fide career change that outweighs the adverse effect of that parent's diminished income on the child. Imputed income means the estimated earning ability of a parent based on the parent's prior earnings history, education, and job skills, and on availability of jobs within the community for an individual with the parent's qualifications. If the court is unable to determine or estimate the earning ability of a parent, the court may calculate child support based on full-time employment of 40 hours per week at the federal minimum wage or the Minnesota minimum wage, whichever is higher. If a parent is a recipient of public assistance under sections 256.72 to 256.87 or chapter 256D, or is physically or mentally incapacitated, it shall be presumed that the parent is not voluntarily unemployed or underemployed. Sec. 35. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 5d. [EDUCATION TRUST FUND.] The parties may agree to designate a sum of money above any court ordered child support as a trust fund for the costs of post-secondary education. Sec. 36. Minnesota Statutes 1992, 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. An application fee not to exceedof $25 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. The public authority upon written notice to the obligee shall assess a fee of $25 to the person not receiving public assistance for each successful federal tax interception. The fee must be withheld prior to the release of the funds received from each interception and deposited in the general fund. 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, United States Code, title 42, sections 601 to 613 and United States Code, title 42, sections 651 to 662. Sec. 37. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, subdivision 10, is amended to read: Subd. 10. [ADMINISTRATIVE PROCESS FOR CHILD AND MEDICAL SUPPORT ORDERS.] (a) An administrative process is established to obtain, modify, and enforce child and medical support orders and maintenance. The commissioner of human services may designate counties toEffective July 1, 1994, all counties shall participate in the administrative process established by this section. All proceedings for obtaining, modifying, or enforcing child and medical support orders and maintenance and adjudicating uncontested parentage proceedings, are required to be conducted in counties designated by the commissioner of human services in which the county human services agency is a party or representsprovides services to a party or parties to the action. These actions must be conducted by an administrative law judge from the office of administrative hearings, except for the following proceedings: (1) adjudication of contested parentage; (2) motions to set aside a paternity adjudication or declaration of parentage; (3) evidentiary hearing on contempt motions; and (4) motions to sentence or to revoke the stay of a jail sentence in contempt proceedings. (b) An administrative law judge may hear a stipulation reached on a contempt motion, but any stipulation that involves a finding of contempt and a jail sentence, whether stayed or imposed, shall require the review and signature of a district judge. (c) For the purpose of this process, all powers, duties, and responsibilities conferred on judges of the district court to obtain and enforce child and medical support and maintenance obligations, subject to the limitation set forth herein, are conferred on the administrative law judge conducting the proceedings, including the power to issue orders to show cause and to issue bench warrants for failure to appear. (d) Before implementing the process in a county, the chief administrative law judge, the commissioner of human services, the director of the county human services agency, the county attorney, and thecounty court administrator, and county sheriff shall jointly establish procedures and the county shall provide hearing facilities for implementing this process in a county. (e) Nonattorney employees of the public agency responsible for child support in the counties designated by the commissioner , acting at the direction of the county attorney,may prepare, sign, serve, and file complaints and motions for obtaining, modifying, or enforcing child and medical support orders and maintenance and related documents, appear at prehearing conferences, and participate in proceedings before an administrative law judge. This activity shall not be considered to be the unauthorized practice of law. (f) The hearings shall be conducted under the rules of the office of administrative hearings, Minnesota Rules, parts 1400.7100 to 1400.7500, 1400.7700, and 1400.7800, as adopted by the chief administrative law judge. All other aspects of the case, including, but not limited to, pleadings, discovery, and motions, shall be conducted under the rules of family court, the rules of civil procedure, and chapter 518. The administrative law judge shall make findings of fact, conclusions, and a final decision and issue an order. Orders issued by an administrative law judge are enforceable by the contempt powers of the county and district courts. (g) The decision and order of the administrative law judge is appealable to the court of appeals in the same manner as a decision of the district court. (h) The commissioner of human services shall distribute money for this purpose to counties to cover the costs of the administrative process, including the salaries of administrative law judges. If available appropriations are insufficient to cover the costs, the commissioner shall prorate the amount among the counties. Sec. 38. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.551, subdivision 12, is amended to read: Subd. 12. [OCCUPATIONAL LICENSE SUSPENSION.] Upon petition of an obligee or public agency responsible for child support enforcement, if the court finds that the obligor is or may be licensed by a licensing board listed in section 214.01 or other state agency or board that issues an occupational license and the obligor is in arrears in court-ordered child support payments, the court may direct the licensing board or other licensing agency to conduct a hearing under section 214.101 concerning suspension of the obligor's license. If the obligor is a licensed attorney, the court may report the matter to the lawyers professional responsibility board for appropriate action in accordance with the rules of professional conduct. The remedy under this subdivision is in addition to any other enforcement remedy available to the court. Sec. 39. [518.561] [EMPLOYER QUESTIONNAIRE AND NOTICE.] The commissioner of human services shall prepare a questionnaire for use by employers in obtaining information from employees for purposes of complying with sections 518.171, subdivision 2a, and 518.611, subdivision 8. The commissioner shall arrange for public dissemination of the questionnaires and notice to employers of the requirements of these provisions. Sec. 40. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.57, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [ORDER.] Upon a decree of dissolution, legal separation, or annulment, the court shall make a further order which is just and proper concerning the maintenance of the minor children as provided by section 518.551, and for the maintenance of any child of the parties as defined in section 518.54, as support money , and. The court may make the sameany child support order a lien or charge upon the property of the parties to the proceeding, or either of themobligor, either at the time of the entry of the judgment or by subsequent order upon proper application. Sec. 41. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.57, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: Subd. 4. [OTHER CUSTODIANS.] If a child resides with a person other than a parent and the court approves of the custody arrangement, the court may order child support payments to be made to the custodian regardless of whether the person has legal custody. Sec. 42. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.611, subdivision 4, is amended to read: Subd. 4. [EFFECT OF ORDER.] (a) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, the order is binding on the employer, trustee, payor of the funds, or financial institution when service 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. In the case of a financial institution, preauthorized transfers must occur in accordance with a court-ordered payment schedule. An employer, payor of funds, or financial institution 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 and section 518.613 and shall remit, within ten days of the date the obligor is paid the remainder of the income, the amounts withheld to the public authority. The payor shall identify on the remittance information the date the obligor is paid the remainder of the income. The obligor is considered to have paid the amount withheld as of the date the obligor received the remainder of the income. The financial institution shall execute preauthorized transfers from the deposit accounts of the obligor in the amount specified in the order and amounts required under subdivision 2 as directed by the public authority responsible for child support enforcement. (b) Employers may combine all amounts withheld from one pay period into one payment to each public authority, but shall separately identify each obligor making payment. 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. (c) 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. A financial institution is liable to the obligee if funds in any of the obligor's deposit accounts identified in the court order equal the amount stated in the preauthorization agreement but are not transferred by the financial institution in accordance with the agreement. An employer or other payor of funds that fails to withhold or transfer funds in accordance with this section is also liable to the obligee for interest on the funds at the rate applicable to judgments under section 549.09, computed from the date the funds were required to be withheld or transferred. An employer or other payor of funds is liable for reasonable attorney fees of the obligee or public authority incurred in enforcing the liability under this paragraph. An employer or other payor of funds that has failed to comply with the requirements of this section is subject to contempt sanctions under section 44. Sec. 43. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.613, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [GENERAL.] Notwithstanding any provision of section 518.611, subdivision 2 or 3, to the contrary, whenever an obligation for child support or maintenance, enforced by the public authority, is initially determined and ordered or modified by the court in a county in which this section applies, the amount of child support or maintenance ordered by the court and any fees assessed by the public authority responsible for child support enforcement must be withheld from the income, regardless of source, of the person obligated to pay the support. Sec. 44. [518.615] [EMPLOYER CONTEMPT.] Subdivision 1. [ORDERS BINDING.] Income withholding or medical support orders issued pursuant to sections 518.171, 518.611, and 518.613 are binding on the employer, trustee, or other payor of funds after the order and notice of income withholding or enforcement of medical support has been served on the employer, trustee, or payor of funds. Subd. 2. [CONTEMPT ACTION.] An obligee or the public agency responsible for child support enforcement may initiate a contempt action against an employer, trustee, or payor of funds, within the action that created the support obligation, by serving an order to show cause upon the employer, trustee, or payor of funds. The employer, trustee, or payor of funds is presumed to be in contempt: (1) if the employer, trustee, or payor of funds has intentionally failed to withhold support after receiving the order and notice of income withholding or notice of enforcement of medical support; or (2) upon presentation of pay stubs or similar documentation showing the employer, trustee, or payor of funds withheld support and demonstration that the employer, trustee, or payor of funds intentionally failed to remit support to the agency responsible for child support enforcement. Subd. 3. [LIABILITY.] The employer, trustee, or payor of funds is liable to the obligee or the agency responsible for child support enforcement for any amounts required to be withheld that were not paid. The court may enter judgment against the employer, trustee, or payor of funds for support not withheld or remitted. The court may also impose contempt sanctions under chapter 588. Sec. 45. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.64, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. After an order for maintenance or support money, temporary or permanent, or for the appointment of trustees to receive property awarded as maintenance or support money, the court may from time to time, on motion of either of the parties, a copy of which is served on the public authority responsible for child support enforcement if payments are made through it, or on motion of the public authority responsible for support enforcement, modify the order respecting the amount of maintenance or support money, and the payment of it, and also respecting the appropriation and payment of the principal and income of property held in trust, and may make an order respecting these matters which it might have made in the original proceeding, except as herein otherwise provided. A party or the public authority also may bring a motion for contempt of court if the obligor is in arrears in support or maintenance payments. Sec. 46. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.64, subdivision 2, is amended to read: Subd. 2. [MODIFICATION.] (a) The terms of an order respecting maintenance or support may be modified upon a showing of one or more of the following: (1) substantially increased or decreased earnings of a party; (2) substantially increased or decreased need of a party or the child or children that are the subject of these proceedings; (3) receipt of assistance under sections 256.72 to 256.87; or(4) a change in the cost of living for either party as measured by the federal bureau of statistics, any of which makes the terms unreasonable and unfair; (5) extraordinary medical expenses of the child not provided for under section 518.171; or (6) the addition or elimination of work-related or education-related child care expenses of the obligee or a substantial increase or decrease in existing work-related or education-related child care expenses. It is presumed that there has been a substantial change in circumstances under clause (1), (2), or (4) and the terms of a current support order shall be rebuttably presumed to be unreasonable and unfair if the application of the child support guidelines in section 518.551, subdivision 5, to the current circumstances of the parties results in a calculated court order that is at least 20 percent and at least $50 per month higher or lower than the current support order. (b) On a motion for modification of maintenance, including a motion for the extension of the duration of a maintenance award, the court shall apply, in addition to all other relevant factors, the factors for an award of maintenance under section 518.552 that exist at the time of the motion. On a motion for modification of support, the court: (1) shall apply section 518.551, subdivision 5, and shall not consider the financial circumstances of each party's spouse, if any; and (2) shall not consider compensation received by a party for employment in excess of a 40-hour work week, provided that the party demonstrates, and the court finds, that: (i) the excess employment began after entry of the existing support order; (ii) the excess employment is voluntary and not a condition of employment; (iii) the excess employment is in the nature of additional, part-time employment, or overtime employment compensable by the hour or fractions of an hour; (iv) the party's compensation structure has not been changed for the purpose of affecting a support or maintenance obligation; (v) in the case of an obligor, current child support payments are at least equal to the guidelines amount based on income not excluded under this clause; and (vi) in the case of an obligor who is in arrears in child support payments to the obligee, any net income from excess employment must be used to pay the arrearages until the arrearages are paid in full. (c) A modification of support or maintenance may be made retroactive only with respect to any period during which the petitioning party has pending a motion for modification but only from the date of service of notice of the motion on the responding party and on the public authority if public assistance is being furnished or the county attorney is the attorney of record. However, modification may be applied to an earlier period if the court makes express findings that the party seeking modification was precluded from serving a motion by reason of a significant physical or mental disability, a material misrepresentation of another party, or fraud upon the court and that the party seeking modification, when no longer precluded, promptly served a motion. (d) Except for an award of the right of occupancy of the homestead, provided in section 518.63, all divisions of real and personal property provided by section 518.58 shall be final, and may be revoked or modified only where the court finds the existence of conditions that justify reopening a judgment under the laws of this state, including motions under section 518.145, subdivision 2. The court may impose a lien or charge on the divided property at any time while the property, or subsequently acquired property, is owned by the parties or either of them, for the payment of maintenance or support money, or may sequester the property as is provided by section 518.24. (e) The court need not hold an evidentiary hearing on a motion for modification of maintenance or support. (f) Section 518.14 shall govern the award of attorney fees for motions brought under this subdivision. Sec. 47. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.64, subdivision 5, is amended to read: Subd. 5. [FORM.] The department of human services shall prepare and make available to courts, obligors and persons to whom child support is owed a form to be submitted by the obligor or the person to whom child support is owed in support of a motion for a modification of an order for support or maintenance or for contempt of court. The rulemaking provisions of chapter 14 shall not apply to the preparation of the form. Sec. 48. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.64, subdivision 6, is amended to read: Subd. 6. [EXPEDITED PROCEDURE.] (a) The public authority may seek a modification of the child support order in accordance with the rules of civil procedure or under the expedited procedures in this subdivision. (b) The public authority may serve the following documents upon the obligor either by certified mail or in the manner provided for service of a summonsother pleadings under the rules of civil procedure: (i) a notice of its application for modification of the obligor's support order stating the amount and effective date of the proposed modification which date shall be no sooner than 30 days from the date of service; (ii) an affidavit setting out the basis for the modification under subdivision 2, including evidence of the current income of the parties; (iii) any other documents the public authority intends to file with the court in support of the modification; (iv) the proposed order; (v) notice to the obligor that if the obligor fails to move the court and request a hearing on the issue of modification of the support order within 30 days of service of the notice of application for modification, the public authority will likely obtain an order, ex parte, modifying the support order; and (vi) an explanation to the obligor of how a hearing can be requested, together with a motion for review form that the obligor can complete and file with the court to request a hearing. (c) If the obligor moves the court for a hearing, any modification must be stayed until the court has had the opportunity to determine the issue. Any modification ordered by the court is effective on the date set out in the notice of application for modification, but no earlier than 30 days following the date the obligor was served. (d) If the obligor fails to move the court for hearing within 30 days of service of the notice, the public authority shall file with the court a copy of the notice served on the obligor as well as all documents served on the obligor, proof of service, and a proposed order modifying support. (e) If, following judicial review, the court determines that the procedures provided for in this subdivision have been followed and the requested modification is appropriate, the order shall be signed ex parte and entered. (f) Failure of the court to enter an order under this subdivision does not prejudice the right of the public authority or either party to seek modification in accordance with the rules of civil procedure. (g) The supreme court shall develop standard forms for the notice of application of modification of the support order, the supporting affidavit, the obligor's responsive motion, and proposed order granting the modification. Sec. 49. [518.585] [NOTICE OF INTEREST ON LATE CHILD SUPPORT.] Any judgment or decree of dissolution or legal separation containing a requirement of child support and any determination of parentage, order under chapter 518C, order under section 256.87, or order under section 260.251 must include a notice to the parties that section 548.091, subdivision 1a, provides for interest to begin accruing on a payment or installment of child support whenever the unpaid amount due is greater than the current support due. Sec. 50. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 548.09, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [DOCKETING; SURVIVAL OF JUDGMENT.] Except as provided in section 548.091, every judgment requiring the payment of money shall be docketed by the court administrator upon its entry. Upon a transcript of the docket being filed with the court administrator in any other county, the court administrator shall also docket it. From the time of docketing the judgment is a lien, in the amount unpaid, upon all real property in the county then or thereafter owned by the judgment debtor, but it is not a lien upon registered land unless it is also filed pursuant to sections 508.63 and 508A.63. The judgment survives, and the lien continues, for ten years after its entry. Child support judgments may be renewed by service of notice upon the debtor. Service shall be by certified mail at the last known address of the debtor or in the manner provided for the service of civil process. Upon the filing of the notice and proof of service the court administrator shall renew the judgment for child support without any additional filing fee. Sec. 51. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 548.091, subdivision 1a, is amended to read: Subd. 1a. [CHILD SUPPORT JUDGMENT BY OPERATION OF LAW.] Any payment or installment of support required by a judgment or decree of dissolution or legal separation, determination of parentage, an order under chapter 518C, an order under section 256.87, or an order under section 260.251, that is not paid or withheld from the obligor's income as required under section 518.611 or 518.613, is a judgment by operation of law on and after the date it is due and is entitled to full faith and credit in this state and any other state. Interest accrues from the date the judgment on the payment or installment is entered and docketed under subdivision 3a,unpaid amount due is greater than the current support due at the annual rate provided in section 549.09, subdivision 1, plus two percent, not to exceed an annual rate of 18 percent. A payment or installment of support that becomes a judgment by operation of law between the date on which a party served notice of a motion for modification under section 518.64, subdivision 2, and the date of the court's order on modification may be modified under that subdivision. Sec. 52. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 548.091, subdivision 3a, is amended to read: Subd. 3a. [ENTRY, DOCKETING, AND SURVIVAL OF CHILD SUPPORT JUDGMENT.] Upon receipt of the documents filed under subdivision 2a, the court administrator shall enter and docket the judgment in the amount of the default specified in the affidavit of default. From the time of docketing, the judgment is a lien upon all the real property in the county owned by the judgment debtor. The judgment survives and the lien continues for ten years after the date the judgment was docketed. Child support judgments may be renewed by service of notice upon the debtor. Service shall be by certified mail at the last known address of the debtor or in the manner provided for the service of civil process. Upon the filing of the notice and proof of service the court administrator shall renew the judgment for child support without any additional filing fee. Sec. 53. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 588.20, is amended to read: 588.20 [CRIMINAL CONTEMPTS.] Every person who shall commit a contempt of court, of any one of the following kinds, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor: (1) Disorderly, contemptuous, or insolent behavior, committed during the sitting of the court, in its immediate view and presence, and directly tending to interrupt its proceedings, or to impair the respect due to its authority; (2) Behavior of like character in the presence of a referee, while actually engaged in a trial or hearing, pursuant to an order of court, or in the presence of a jury while actually sitting for the trial of a cause, or upon an inquest or other proceeding authorized by law; (3) Breach of the peace, noise, or other disturbance directly tending to interrupt the proceedings of a court, jury, or referee; (4) Willful disobedience to the lawful process or other mandate of a court; (5) Resistance willfully offered to its lawful process or other mandate; (6) Contumacious and unlawful refusal to be sworn as a witness, or, after being sworn, to answer any legal and proper interrogatory; (7) Publication of a false or grossly inaccurate report of its proceedings; or (8) Willful failure to pay court-ordered child support when the obligor has the ability to pay. No person shall be punished as herein provided for publishing a true, full, and fair report of a trial, argument, decision, or other proceeding had in court. Sec. 54. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 609.375, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. Whoever is legally obligated to provide care and support to a spouse who is in necessitous circumstances, or child, whether or not its custody has been granted to another, and knowingly omits and fails without lawful excuse to do so is guilty of nonsupport of the spouse or child, as the case may bea misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereofmay be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 90 days or to payment of a fine of not more than $300$700, or both. Sec. 55. Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 609.375, subdivision 2, is amended to read: Subd. 2. If the knowing omission and failure without lawful excuse to provide care and support to a spouse, a minor child, or a pregnant wifeviolation of subdivision 1 continues for a period in excess of 90 days the person is guilty of a felonygross misdemeanor and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than five yearsone year or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both. Sec. 56. [INCOME WITHHOLDING; SINGLE CHECK SYSTEM CENTRAL DEPOSITORY OR OTHER FISCAL AGENT.] The commissioner of human services, in consultation with county child support enforcement agencies and other persons with relevant expertise, shall study and make recommendations on: (1) the feasibility of establishing a single check system under which employers who are implementing income withholding may make one combined payment for payments due to public authorities to one public authority or to the commissioner of human services; and (2) the feasibility of establishing a central depository or designating a fiscal agent for receipt of child support payments. The commissioner shall estimate the cost of the single check system and use of a central depository or fiscal agent and the level of fees that would be necessary to make them self-supporting. The commissioner shall report to the legislature by January 15, 1995. Sec. 57. [INCOME SHARES FORMULA; JOINT AND SPLIT CUSTODY CHILD SUPPORT.] The commissioner of human services advisory committee for child support enforcement shall study and make recommendations on: (1) the feasibility of converting from the current child support guidelines to an income shares formula for determining child support; and (2) guidelines or formulas for the computation of child support in cases involving joint physical or split custody. The commissioner shall perform data analyses of any guidelines or formulas being recommended by the committee to determine the impact of the formula on child support based on different income levels and the number of children involved. The commissioner shall not contract with any person outside the department to perform the study. The commissioner shall report the findings and recommendations of the committee to the legislature by January 15, 1994. Sec. 58. [ADMINISTRATIVE PROCESS FOR CHILD SUPPORT.] The commissioner of human services, in consultation with the commissioner's advisory committee for child support enforcement, shall develop and implement a plan to restructure the administrative process for setting, modifying, and enforcing child support under Minnesota Statutes, section 518.551, subdivision 10. The plan shall implement a state-administered administrative process that is simple, streamlined, informal, uniform throughout the state, and accessible to parties without counsel no later than July 1, 1994. Sec. 59. [PURPOSE.] The purpose of the amendment to Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 518.64, subdivision 2, paragraph (a), dealing with the presumption of a substantial change in circumstances and self-limited income, is to conform to Code of Federal Regulations, title 42, section 303.8(d)(2). Sec. 60. [REPEALER.] (a) Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 256.979, is repealed. (b) Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 609.37, is repealed. Sec. 61. [EFFECTIVE DATE; APPLICATION.] (a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, this act is effective August 1, 1993. (b) Sections 8 to 14 and 56 to 58 are effective July 1, 1993. (c) Sections 21, 22, and 33 apply to child support and medical support orders entered or modified on or after the effective date. (d) Sections 54, 55, and 60, paragraph (b), are effective August 1, 1993, and apply to crimes committed on or after that date. (d) Sections 36 and 37 are effective January 1, 1994. Presented to the governor May 20, 1993 Signed by the governor May 24, 1993, 12:14 p.m.
Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes