INTERNATIONAL INTERGOVERNMENTAL

CS 251P International Case Processing Overview

08/20/01 Revised 06/15/18 Training Completed 06/29/18

42 U.S.C. 654(32)(A); 45 CFR 303.7(a)(4); U.C.A. 78B-14-304(2), 305(6), 307(4), 308(2), 316(6)

 

 

Introduction

 

The Office of Recovery Services (ORS) processes two different types of international cases; cases with Foreign Reciprocating Countries (FRCs) and cases with Foreign Treaty Countries (FTCs).

 

·                     Foreign Reciprocating Countries (FRCs) – For more information on FRCs, refer to CS 253 International Case Processing – Foreign Reciprocating Countries and to OCSE’s International website (https://www.acf.hhs.gov/css/partners/international), specifically the section regarding FRCs; and,

 

·                     Foreign Treaty Countries (FTCs) (also referred to as Convention Countries) – For more information on FTCs, refer to CS 252 International Case Processing under UIFSA Article 7 – Overview and to OCSE’s International website (https://www.acf.hhs.gov/css/partners/international), specifically the section regarding the Hague Child Support Convention.  You may also refer to the Hague website at https://www.hcch.net/en/instruments/conventions/specialised-sections/child-support

 

To determine whether a specific country is an FRC or an FTC, refer to the Office of Child Support Enforcement’s (OCSE’s) International website.

 

 

Alerts

 

Because the exchange rate fluctuates continuously, it is impractical to monitor all foreign support orders and make continuous adjustments to the ordered amount based on the current exchange rate.  Therefore, once a year, the assigned agent will receive an alert to help monitor foreign support orders and for a prompt to check the current exchange rate for the appropriate U.S. dollar conversion.

 

The exchange rate only needs to be checked once a year and adjustments made to the order, as needed.  If you believe an exception should be made to the one-time per year practice, refer the case to your Associate Regional Director (ARD) and/or Regional Director (RD).

 

 

Procedures – No Reciprocal Agreement

 

UCA 78B-14-308(2) states:

“The attorney general may determine that a foreign country or political subdivision has established a reciprocal arrangement for child-support with this state and take appropriate action for notification of the determination.”

 

If a country is not an FRC or an FTC and there is a need to create one with the country, contact the Child Support Services (CSS) Intergovernmental Coordinator within the Policy Analysis Unit (PAU) to review the case and discuss the possibility of establishing a reciprocal agreement with the foreign country with the Attorney General’s Office (AGO).  The AGO will only attempt to establish reciprocity with a foreign country if the child support laws of that country are similar to Utah’s laws.

 

If after consulting with the PAU it is determined that a reciprocal agreement will not be pursued and the case does not meet any of the federal closure criteria, you may still send a referral to the foreign country to request its assistance by taking the steps listed below.

 

1.                   Generate the following documents:

a.                   A Child Support Enforcement Transmittal #1 – Initial Request letter to the responsible agency or office in the foreign country, if appropriate.  Include the International:  To Foreign Country letter with the Child Support Enforcement Transmittal #1 letter.  Make sure you highlight the purpose of your request (e.g., establishment of paternity).

b.                  The Interstate:  To Obligee, Referral Sent letter.  This letter is sent to the CP notifying him/her of the referral to the foreign country.

 

2.                   Forward a copy of the portions of the international packet to CIU to be imaged.  Attach a copy of the ORS Imaging Header Sheet to the above forms with a black clip.

 

3.                   Send the original:

a.                   Child Support Enforcement Transmittal #1, International:  To Foreign Country letters, and any other documents required to the foreign country’s Central Registry address; and,

b.                  Interstate:  To Obligee, Referral Sent letter to the CP.

 

If you know that the foreign country requires a translated referral, documentation in order to work the case, you do not need to send a referral/ documentation.  Instead, document in the case narrative (for audit purposes) that you cannot send the referral because you have been unable to gather all the required documentation.  For more information on translated referrals/ orders, refer to Translating Order/Forms, below.

 

If the foreign country fails to recognize the referral or provide enforcement services, and you have something documented in writing from the country, you may close the case provided that the NCP does not work for the federal government or for a company that has its headquarters in the United States, and you have determined that the NCP has no reachable domestic income or assets. 

 

 

Translating Orders/Forms

 

If the NCP lives in a foreign reciprocating country, refer to CS 253 International Case Processing – Foreign Reciprocating Countries for Procedures.  If the NCP lives in a foreign treaty country, refer to CS 252 for procedures.

 

 

Procedures - Currency Converter

 

If you have a foreign support order and need to convert the monthly child support amount from one currency type to another, you may go to the Universal Currency Converter at http://www.xe.com to convert the amount.  The Universal Currency Converter may be used to convert from:

 

·                     U.S. dollars into foreign currency (e.g., you have an order and the monthly child support amount is $300.00 dollars; you need to send a referral to England for enforcement, but you must convert dollars into Euros); or,

 

·                     Foreign currency into US dollars (e.g., you have an order from Belgium and the monthly child support amount is 300.00 Euros.  Before the order can be added to the system you must convert Euros into U.S. dollars). 

 

 

Special Considerations – International Cases

 

Pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 654(32)(A) each state must:

provide that any request for services under this part by a foreign reciprocating country, a foreign treaty country, or a foreign country with which the State has an arrangement described in section 659a(d) of this title shall be treated as a request by a State. . . .

 

The following provides specific information about applying intergovernmental procedures to international cases.

 

1.                   Timeframes – Federal IV-D regulations only apply to states that are receiving IV-D funding.  Therefore, IV-D agencies (such as CSS) must meet all federal interstate timeframes when working with foreign reciprocating and foreign treaty countries.  Foreign countries are not bound by the same regulations. 

a.                   Disbursement of payments: 

i.                     CSS must disburse all payments to the foreign country within 2 business days (incoming international case). 

ii.                   CSS must disburse payments to the CP (outgoing international case) within 2 business days of the converted payment (converted to U.S. Dollars from the foreign currency) being received by the State Disbursement Unit (SDU).  This allows time for the payment to be sent to the bank and converted to U.S. Dollars before the timeframe begins.

b.                  Requests for information: Pursuant to 45 CFR 303.7(c)(6) an initiating state must:

“Within 30 calendar days of receipt of the request for information, provide the responding agency with an updated intergovernmental form and any necessary additional documentation, or notify the responding agency when the information will be provided. . . .”

 

ORS must provide the responding country with the requested information within 30 calendar days of the request.  If you anticipate that it will take longer than 30 days to provide the requested information, notify the foreign country of the date the information is expected to be provided.  Foreign reciprocating countries and foreign treaty countries are not held to the 30-day timeframe for responding to requests for information from CSS.  Always allow sufficient time for translating, using international postal services, and other general procedural differences, and apply case-closure criteria due to lack of information cautiously when working with a foreign country.  

 

2.                   Services offered – Provide the same services on international cases as are provided on in-state or interstate cases. 

 

EXAMPLE 1:  A foreign reciprocating country requests spousal support services only.  CSS does not offer spousal support services unless they are linked to a child support obligation.  Notify the foreign country that the services requested are not offered by CSS on any case.

 

EXAMPLE 2:  CSS has an incoming international child support case.  The CSS worker locates the NCP in another state.  The agent notifies the foreign reciprocating country of the new locate information.  The worker in the foreign country requests the CSS worker to forward the paperwork to the new state (the request can be in any format--written, e-mail, phone call).  Since forwarding an interstate petition to a new state is a routine procedure on interstate cases, follow the same procedure for the international case.