74.20A.260  <<  74.20A.270 >>   74.20A.275

RCW 74.20A.270

Department claim for support moneys—Notice—Answer—Adjudicative proceeding—Judicial review—Moneys not subject to claim.

(1) The secretary may issue a notice of retained support or notice to recover a support payment to any person:
(a) Who is in possession of support moneys, or who has had support moneys in his or her possession at some time in the past, which support moneys were or are claimed by the department as the property of the department by assignment, subrogation, or by operation of law or legal process under chapter 74.20A RCW;
(b) Who has received a support payment erroneously directed to the wrong payee, or issued by the department in error; or
(c) Who is in possession of a support payment obtained through the internal revenue service tax refund offset process, which payment was later reclaimed from the department by the internal revenue service as a result of an amended tax return filed by the obligor or the obligor's spouse.
(2) The notice shall state the legal basis for the claim and shall provide sufficient detail to enable the person to identify the support moneys in issue.
(3) The department shall serve the notice by certified mail, return receipt requested, or in the manner of a summons in a civil action.
(4) The amounts claimed in the notice shall become assessed, determined, and subject to collection twenty days from the date of service of the notice unless within those twenty days the person in possession of the support moneys:
(a) Acknowledges the department's right to the moneys and executes an agreed settlement providing for repayment of the moneys; or
(b) Requests an adjudicative proceeding to determine the rights to ownership of the support moneys in issue. The hearing shall be held pursuant to this section, chapter 34.05 RCW, the Administrative Procedure Act, and the rules of the department. The burden of proof to establish ownership of the support moneys claimed is on the department.
(5) After the twenty-day period, a person served with a notice under this section may, at any time within one year from the date of service of the notice of support debt, petition the secretary or the secretary's designee for an adjudicative proceeding upon a showing of any of the grounds enumerated in RCW 4.72.010 or superior court civil rule 60. A copy of the petition shall also be served on the department. The filing of the petition shall not stay any collection action being taken, but the debtor may petition the secretary or the secretary's designee for an order staying collection action pending the final administrative order. Any such moneys held and/or taken by collection action after the date of any such stay shall be held by the department pending the final order, to be disbursed in accordance with the final order.
(6) If the debtor fails to attend or participate in the hearing or other stage of an adjudicative proceeding, the presiding officer shall, upon showing of valid service, enter an order declaring the amount of support moneys, as claimed in the notice, to be assessed and determined and subject to collection action.
(7) The department may take action to collect an obligation established under this section using any remedy available under this chapter or chapter 26.09, 26.18, 26.23, or 74.20 RCW for the collection of child support.
(8) If, at any time, the superior court enters judgment for an amount of debt at variance with the amount determined by the final order in an adjudicative proceeding, the judgment shall supersede the final administrative order. The department may take action pursuant to chapter 74.20 or 74.20A RCW to obtain such a judgment or to collect moneys determined by such a judgment to be due and owing.
(9) If a person owing a debt established under this section is receiving public assistance, the department may collect the debt by offsetting up to ten percent of the grant payment received by the person. No collection action may be taken against the earnings of a person receiving cash public assistance to collect a debt assessed under this section.
(10) Payments not credited against the department's debt pursuant to RCW 74.20.101 may not be assessed or collected under this section.
NOTES:
Short titlePart headings, captions, table of contents not lawExemptions and waivers from federal lawConflict with federal requirementsSeverability1997 c 58: See RCW 74.08A.900 through 74.08A.904.
Effective date1989 c 175: See note following RCW 34.05.010.
Severability1979 ex.s. c 171: See note following RCW 74.20.300.
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