March 3, 2008                                                                                            

 

 

           

                                 CalWORKs PROGRAM GUIDE          

                                                       SPECIAL NOTICE                                           

                                                                08- 01                                                       

 

 

Subject

CalWORKs NOTIFICATION TO THE LOCAL CHILD SUPPORT AGENCY (LCSA)

 

 

Reference

All County Letter (ACL) 07-51

 

 

Effective Date

Upon receipt

 

 

Purpose

The purpose of this CalWORKs Special Notice is to reinforce and provide clarification to staff regarding policies for referrals and transmittals to the Local Child Support Agency (LCSA).       

 

 

Background

Counties have the responsibility to refer to the LCSA, every CalWORKs case in which a child is aided based on deprivation of absent parent(s), unless exempt from the LCSA cooperation requirements.  

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Referral Requirement

As a condition of CalWORKs eligibility, the applicant is required to cooperate in establishing absent parent deprivation by providing the information necessary for the completion of the following child support forms:

 

·   CW 2.1 (Notice & Agreement for Child, Spousal, and Medical

  Support,

·   CW 2.1Q (Child Support Questionnaire), and

·   CW 371 (Referral to the Local Child Support Agency).

 

The applicant is also required to provide any other information in their possession which is relevant to the Child Support Enforcement (CSE) program when requested by the LCSA. The Human Services Specialist (HSS) is to obtain the above child support referral forms at initial intake when absence deprivation is claimed or when the basis of deprivation changes to absence.

 

 

Transmittal of Referrals 

If no good cause exists, the HSS must provide to the LCSA, the   completed child support referral forms (CW371, CW2.1 and CW2,1Q) forms for each absent parent or alleged father.  These forms must be provided to the LCSA (Mail Stop: C-77 Attn: Case Intake), no later than two working days after the applicant/recipient meets all conditions of eligibility and the HSS authorizes approval of the application for cash aid.

 

  

Referral of Pregnant Women Only Cases

 An unborn child is not considered a member of the assistance unit (AU) until the child is born and otherwise eligible. Therefore, when an unborn child establishes eligibility for a Pregnant Woman Only (PWO) or pregnant minor case, and absence of the parent is the basis of deprivation, the HSS must obtain all information and forms necessary to establish deprivation but must NOT send the child support referral and other information to the LCSA until after the child is born.

 

Note: When an application is taken on a PWO case, staff must be sure to complete the Absent Parent Information windows in CalWIN.  As referrals on PWO cases are NOT to be sent to the LCSA until after the baby is born, staff must then delete the CW371 from the print queue.        

 

  

 

Obtaining Absent Parent Information (County) 

The applicant/recipient must provide all information necessary to   complete the requested child support referral forms and provide all pertinent information. This means that the applicant/recipient must provide all known information requested on the prescribed forms or indicate that the information is unknown.

 

The HSS is responsible for ensuring that the applicant/recipient has accurately provided the information to the best of their ability. The HSS must also not interview the applicant/recipient to obtain additional child support information beyond that requested on the prescribed forms, unless necessary to establish good cause.

 

 

Non-Cooperation with the LCSA

It is the responsibility of the HSS to determine whether good cause/reason for non-cooperation exists when the LCSA makes a determination of non-cooperation in establishing paternity or securing child support.  

 

When the LCSA indicates that the client has not cooperated and has not established good cause/reason for failure to cooperate, the LCSA will notify the HSS using form CW371.  The LCSA provides the non-cooperation information in Section II of the CW371.  The information supplied by LCSA is to assist the HSS in determining if the client had good cause/reason for not cooperating with the LCSA.

 

 

Determination of Cooperation with LCSA

The LCSA is responsible for determining whether the applicant/recipient is cooperating in establishing paternity and securing child/spousal support. Cooperation requires that the applicant/recipient complete, sign, and date the child support referral forms for each absent parent or alleged father.

 

The LCSA is responsible for conducting interviews with the applicant/recipient for other child support related information that is not provided on these forms to establish whether the applicant/recipient has met the cooperation requirement. The LCSA is responsible for determining whether the individual could reasonably be expected to provide the information, before determining whether the individual is cooperating.

  

 

 

 

Good Cause/No Known Child Support Case 

When the applicant/recipient, who does not have an open child support case on the non-custodial parent (NCP) against whom good cause is claimed, claims good cause prior to the initial referral to the LCSA, the HSS will not initially send any forms or notices to the LCSA. 

 

 

Good Cause/Open Child Support Case   

When the HSS is aware of an open child support case at the time the applicant/recipient makes a request for a good cause determination, the HSS is to notify the LCSA immediately that good cause has been claimed, via the CW 51 (Child Support Good Cause Claim for Non-cooperation).   The CW 51 and a CW371 should be sent to Mail Stop C-77 Attn: Case Intake.  Section A. of the CW371 should be completed indicating that good cause is being “claimed” and any other pertinent information noted in the comments section.     

 

    

Good Cause Inter County Transfer

When the recipient claims good cause during the Inter County Transfer process, the county interviewing the recipient (receiving county), must clarify with the recipient whether child support activities are in process in any county (prior county).

 

·  When there is no known child support activity, the HSS will not send any forms or notices to the LCSA as noted above.

 

·  When the HSS is aware of child support activities currently in progress in any prior county at the time the recipient makes a request for a good cause claim, the HSS is to notify the LCSA in the receiving county using the CW 51. The completed form must include sufficient information for the receiving county LCSA to notify the prior county LCSA that good cause has been claimed so that collection activities are suspended in the prior county.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Final Determination Good Cause Exists

For each case in which a final determination was made that good cause exists, the HSS must notify the LCSA of the determination and no child support referral is made. The HSS does not submit the CW 371 Referral, only the CW 51 will be sent to the LCSA. The CW 2.1, and CW 2.1Q are to be filed in the CalWORKs case record.

 

Notification of the final determination that good cause exists provides the LCSA with the appropriate notification to suspend, on active child support cases, all child support activities. This will help to ensure that applicants/recipients are not placed in any danger caused by continued child support activity.

 

   

Final Determination No Good Cause Exists

The HSS must notify the LCSA of recipient cases in which child support activities were suspended due to a claim of good cause and refer applicant cases to the LCSA, when a final determination of “no good cause” is found to exist. The HSS will use existing referral procedures and the following forms: CW 371, CW 51, and CW 2.1Q and CW 2.1, if appropriate. A Notice of Action must be sent informing the applicant/recipient that good cause was not found to exist.     

         

Other LCSA Notifications

Staff is reminded to be sure to send notification to the LCSA of case changes that may have an impact on the child support activities, using the CW 371. When sending notification of good cause claims/determinations or other case changes to the LCSA, the HSS must include as much complete information as possible on the appropriate forms.   

 

This necessary information includes the case number, name of absent parent against whom good cause is claimed, primary applicant of the case and children in common with the absent parent and primary applicant.

 

  

Food Stamp Impact

None

 

 

 

Child Care Impact

None

 

Client Correspondence

To accommodate the notice requirements for a denial for good cause, a TEMP NOA 07-292 Denial Good Cause w/ NA back 9 has been developed in English (Attachment A) and Spanish (Attachment B) translations.  Both forms have been loaded in IWAY and can be ordered to be used as shelf stock. 

  

Automation Impact

None

 

Quality Assurance  Impact

Quality Assurance (QA) will cite the appropriate error when the regulations cited in the material have not been followed.

 

               

Assistant Deputy Director

Original signed 2/26/08

 

JAYE YOSHONIS, ASSISTANT DEPUTY DIRECTOR

CalWORKs Program

Strategic Planning & Operational Support