340:10-10-5. Requirement for assignment of support rights and cooperation
(a) Assignment of support rights. When the reason for deprivation is absence, each applicant or recipient of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) must assign to Oklahoma Human Services (OKDHS) any support rights, including cash medical, that is pending or continuing for any family member included in the assistance unit as a condition of eligibility. This assignment excludes amounts ordered for past due or judgment amounts for persons who never received TANF prior to this application. For persons who previously received TANF, the assignment includes past due or judgment amounts previously assigned to OKDHS for the time period the applicant received TANF. Failure to assign support rights makes the assistance unit ineligible for TANF.
(b) Cooperation in obtaining support. As a condition of TANF eligibility, each applicant or recipient, who is the natural or adoptive parent of the child(ren) included in the assistance unit, must cooperate with OKDHS in obtaining support for each child, per Section 608 of Title 42 of the United States Code (42 U.S.C. § 608). Failure of the applicant or recipient to cooperate without good cause may be indicated during the application interview or at any time further action by the recipient is necessary. • 1
(c) Non-cooperation indicators. Oklahoma Child Support Services (CSS) determines when an applicant or recipient is not cooperating in establishing paternity or in establishing, modifying, or enforcing a support order, per 42 U.S.C. § 654 and Section 264.30 of Title 45 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Per Oklahoma Administrative Code 340:25-5-114, non-cooperation is indicated when the applicant or recipient:
(1) fails to participate in a scheduled CSS conference or meeting;
(2) refuses to complete and sign documents necessary to take legal action against the non-custodial parent(s) when requested to do so by CSS;
(3) fails to comply with an order to submit oneself or the child(ren) to genetic testing to determine paternity;
(4) fails to appear as a witness at an administrative or district court hearing or other proceeding;
(5) fails to provide information, or attest to lack of information, under penalty of perjury;
(6) fails to forward to CSS all child support payments received from the non-custodial parent(s) or other entities other than the Centralized Support Registry after receiving the initial TANF benefit;
(7) pursues private legal action affecting paternity, child support, medical support, or child care or authorizes payments made other than through the Centralized Support Registry without giving CSS notice, and fails to keep CSS informed of the case status; and
(8) engages in ongoing conduct detrimental to CSS enforcement efforts.
(d) Penalty for failure to cooperate. When the applicant or recipient is the natural or adoptive parent and fails or refuses to cooperate with OKDHS without good cause, the TANF benefit is reduced by 25 percent of the payment standard shown on OKDHS Appendix C-1, Maximum Income, Resource and Payment Standards, Schedule IX, per 42 U.S.C. § 608(a)(2), for the next advance notice effective date, per OKDHS Appendix B-2, Deadlines for Case Actions. • 2
(e) Penalty removal. When CSS determines the recipient is cooperating, Adult and Family Services is notified and the 25 percent penalty is removed for the next effective date. • 3
2. (a) When Child Support Services (CSS) staff makes the determination of non-cooperation, CSS staff updates the child support computer system to show an "O' in the "cooperation" field, the reason code in the "reason code" field, and the date non-cooperation is determined in the "non-cooperation date" field. The worker views cooperation status by entering CCPI space and the client's family group number (FGN). When the CCPI screen shows non-cooperation, the system:
(1) automatically applies the 25 percent penalty;
(2) removes the adult's needs from the medical benefit unless, per OAC 317:35-5-7 the applicant or recipient is less than 19 years of age; and
(3) sends a notice to the client.
(b) Caretaker relatives are not assessed a 25 percent penalty for failure to cooperate with CSS. Per OAC 317:35-5-7, the mother remains eligible for medical benefits when she is pregnant. When the automatic process removes a pregnant mother from medical benefits in error, the worker must add the mother back to the medical benefits.
(d) When the parent and the child(ren)'s needs are not included in the same case, the 25 percent penalty applies to the persons included in the TANF benefit: This means when:
(1) the child(ren) receive a State Supplemental Payment (SSP) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the 25 percent penalty applies to the adult only TANF benefit; and
(2) the adult receives SSP and/or SSI, the 25 percent penalty is coded on the oldest child's TANF benefit.
3. (a) CSS staff updates the client's CCPI screen to show cooperation by entering a "Y" in the "cooperation" field and the date cooperation is determined in the "non-cooperation date" field. When the CCPI screen shows cooperation, the system:
(1) automatically removes the 25 percent penalty;
(2) recalculates the TANF benefit;
(3) adds the adult's needs to the medical benefit; and
(4) sends a notice to the client.
(b) Per OAC 340:10-3-57(g) Instructions to staff # 15, the worker issues a supplement for the next month when compliance occurs after deadline.