Employer Resource Overview
Employer Resource Guide
The JFS 08020 – Employer’s Resource Guide to Child Support was developed to help employers manage Ohio child, spousal and medical support orders. Regardless of the size of the organization or the number of individuals employed, this guide will help ensure that employee child support orders are processed accurately and timely.
The Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement offers online tools that can help employers meet some of the requirements previously mentioned in this booklet. For additional information about electronic income-withholding orders or to learn more about reporting employee terminations and lump-sum notifications electronically, please visit the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement.
Income Withholding (aka Wage Garnishment)
As an employer, you play a very important role in providing the financial security for millions of children by working cooperatively with the CSEA. Ohio employers also must report all newly hired employees and independent contractors who live or work in Ohio within 20 days of their start dates. New-hire reporting helps CSEA locate parents who owe support. Employers may report new employees using a variety of methods, including online reporting (www.oh-newhire.com), electronic reporting (via FTP), mail (printed list, new hire reporting form or W4 form), phone (888-872-1490) or fax (888-872-1611). For more information, visit Ohio’s New Hire Reporting Center. These reports are matched against state and national child support records to find parties on active child support cases. Employers must report changes in an employee’s status to the county CSEA. In the event of a layoff, termination, leave of absence without pay, or any termination of pension or retirement benefits, the employer should notify the CSEA in writing within 10 days of the occurrence. The notice should include the employee’s last known address and any available information regarding a new employer or income source. Below are some useful tips regarding the Income Withholding Order/Notice for Support.
When should the garnishment be put into effect?
The withholding should be put into effect as soon as you receive it but no later than the first pay period occurring fourteen (14) days after the date the notice was received. The sooner you begin withholding, the less likely your employee will fall behind on his/her support obligation.
1099 Employees, Independent Contractors, Subcontractors
Independent Contractors, Subcontractors, 1099 Employees ARE subject to withholding and therefore you are required to withhold from the obligor’s income. The Ohio Revised Code defines income as the following: Any form of monetary payment, including personal earnings; workers’ compensation payments; unemployment compensation benefits to the extent permitted by, and in accordance with, Sections 3121.07 and 4141.284 of the Revised Code, and federal law governing the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS); pensions; annuities; allowances; private or governmental retirement benefits; disability or sick pay; insurance proceeds; lottery prize awards; federal, state, or local government benefits to the extent that the benefits can be withheld or deducted under the law governing the benefits; any form of trust fund or endowment; lump-sum payments; and any other payment in money.
Termination of Withholding
Do not terminate the withholding until you receive an official notification to do so. Official notification is not provided by an employee. Official notification is provided by the CSEA directly. If you have any questions regarding this, please contact the CSEA directly.
Payments should be remitted within seven (7) days of the pay date
Employers should deduct the amount specified on the income-withholding order from the employee’s earnings each pay period. The income-withholding order will state the amount that should be withheld based on a semimonthly, weekly, or biweekly pay cycle. If the specified amounts are not withheld and remitted immediately after each pay cycle, the employee may be in danger of falling behind in his or her monthly support obligation.
Payments By Mail
If an employer has fewer than 50 employees and is not able to remit payments electronically, the employer may submit payments to CSPC via personal check, money order or cashier’s check. Additionally, all lump sum payment remittances, regardless of the number of employee’s, must be done through personal check, money order, or cashier’s check. Make checks payable to Ohio CSPC and send by standard U.S. mail to the following address:
P.O. Box 182394
Columbus, OH 43218
- DO NOT send payments directly to a county Child Support Agency.
- If you need to send a payment via overnight delivery, you must use the U.S. Postal Service’s Priority Mail Express.
- Include the following information with each payment for prompt and accurate processing:
- Employee name
- Employee Social Security number (optional)
- Employee’s Support Enforcement Tracking System (SETS) case number (10-digit number that begins with a 7)
- Court or CSEA order number
- Amount that should be applied to each case (if remitting for more than one case)
- Employers may create a remittance statement with the above information to send with the payment.
Mandatory Electronic Payments fifty (50) + Employees
If you are an employer with fifty (50) or more employees, it is mandatory that you combine all of the payments into one payment and submit the payment via electronic transfer.
Employers have two options for remitting payments electronically. If you have questions after reading the information below, please call CSPC Customer Support at (888) 965-2676.
- Pay by checking account debit
Visit https://oh.smartchildsupport.com to make a payment by ACH debit. There is no charge for payments sent to Ohio CSPC. However, there may be a nominal fee for payments remitted to other states. Please allow five days for your first payment to be received. Subsequent payments will be received within three business days. For information, visit https://oh.smartchildsupport.com.
- Pay by National Automated Clearing House Association–approved Automated Clearing House (ACH) Credit
Employers may make electronic payments via ACH credit in either the CCD+ or CTX 820 file format. To remit via ACH credit, verify that your payroll software and your financial institution can remit in one of those ways. Both formats allow the employee name, case number and Social Security number to travel with the payment so Ohio CSPC can apply the funds to the correct case. Many software companies have developed payroll software with these capabilities included. If you have questions, contact your software provider or financial institution for assistance.
For more information, see the Employer EFT/EDI Packet.
Multiple Employees with Child Support Cases?
You do not need to send separate checks for each employee, just send one payment for all of your employees. You just need to identify each employee’s portion of the check with the payment. You also don’t need to separate fees in another check.
Lump Sum Payments
Advise the CSEA of upcoming lump sum payments at MEDINA-CSEA-LUMPSUM@JFS.OHIO.GOV. Any lump sum payment over $150.00 should be sent to the CSEA with at least a forty-five (45) day notice. This allows us to process the lump sum paperwork and avoid having to hold the release to employees.
Consumer Protection Act (employee doesn’t make enough)
Follow the Consumer Credit Protection Act if the employee does not make enough to cover the full obligation. It is not the employer’s responsibility to contact the CSEA if the employee has an issue with the obligation amount and not being able to meet it. The employee must contact the agency to discuss this issue, not the employer.
Employee has Multiple Cases
Deduct for all cases. If an employee has multiple cases, pro-rate the payments if they do not earn enough to cover each case.
Example of Proration
Disposable income is $180.00 and there is not enough to pay the full $227.00 obligation. Figure out the percentage of the total ordered amount that each order represents and then multiply that percentage times the allowable disposable income.
|ORDER||AMOUNT||AMOUNT/TOTAL||AMT PAID ON ORDER IF
DISPOSABLE INC IS $180.00
|A||$90.00||39.65% ($90 / $227)||$71.37 ($180.00 x 39.65%)|
|B||$75.00||33.04% ($75 / $227)||$59.47 ($180.00 x 33.04%)|
|C||$62.00||27.31% ($62 / $227)||$49.16 ($180.00 x 27.31%)|
Termination of Employment or Interruption of Payments
Advise the CSEA when an employee’s pay is interrupted (vacation, sick time, injured, etc.) or terminated to avoid inquiring calls from the CSEA.
Discrimination due to Income Withholding Order
You cannot terminate an employee based on receiving an income withholding order from a CSEA in Ohio within twelve (12) months of hiring (per Ohio Revised Code §§ 2716.041, 2716.05, 3121.18, 3123.20, 3123.99).
The Employer’s Obligations and Asking us for Help
Realize your obligation and ask for help. The notice of income withholding takes priority over any other legal process under the law of Ohio against the same income. Always contact the CSEA if you have any questions, issues, or concerns.
National Medical Support Notice (NMSN)
What is the National Medical Support Notice (NMSN)?
The National Medical Support Notice (NMSN) is a federally required notice used to identify available medical coverage and to enforce medical support orders for minor children. This notice is telling you that your employee is ordered to provide medical, dental, vision, RX, etc. (all of these or some of these). You’ll see that there are two parts to the NMSN, Part A and Part B.
- Part A is to be returned to the agency within twenty (20) days when the medical obligor is unable to carry medical coverage through you, the employer. There are five (5) reasons why he/she is unable to provide medical coverage for his/her dependents that you can simply ‘X’ off and mail back to us. Box six (6) is if the medical insurance will be available in the future (please provide the future effective date), and box seven (7) is if Part B needs to be mailed to the plan administrator (Union—Please mail to Union directly, not back to CSEA).
- Part B is to be returned to the agency within forty (40) days and is to be completed when the obligor is already carrying medical insurance or the employer has enrolled the dependent(s) in medical coverage. The JFS 03377 requires additional information not requested on the NMSN. The health plan administrator must complete both forms and return them according to the accompanying instructions.
Do I need to notify my Employee of This?
No, you don’t. The employee is mailed the National Medical Support Enforcement Activity (NMSEA) notice advising that the NMSN has been sent to you when you are mailed the NMSN.
The Employee and Child(ren) are already Enrolled
Best case scenario has just occurred and all you have to do is complete Part B, page 2, AND the last two pages of the packet which request the effective dates of coverage for the employee and children as well as the policy details and cost information. *Regarding the effective date of coverage, we need the original effective date, not the current enrollment effective date.
The Employee is Enrolled but the Child(ren) is not
Enroll the child(ren) in the option the employee has chosen but in the +1 or + children plan. Then complete Part B, page 2, AND the last two pages of the packet which request the effective dates of coverage for the employee and children as well as the policy details and cost information. *Regarding the effective date of coverage, we need the original effective date, not the current enrollment effective date.
Employee is Not Enrolled, Medical is Available, One Option for Coverage
If there is only one option, you simply enroll the employee and dependent(s) in that option, complete Part B, page 2, AND the last two pages of the packet which request the effective dates of coverage for the employee and children as well as the policy details and cost information. *Regarding the effective date of coverage, we need the original effective date, not the current enrollment effective date.
Employee is Not Enrolled, Medical is Available, Multiple Options for Coverage
The employer’s responsibility is to send the available options to us and we will forward only the affordable plans to the custodial parent for review. The custodial parent will have five days to respond to us. If no response we will leave the choice up to the employer (in our experience the employer usually chooses the “default” or cheapest plan). The employer and child(ren) are then enrolled, you then complete Part B, page 2, AND the last two pages of the packet which request the effective dates of coverage for the employee and children as well as the policy details and cost information. *Regarding the effective date of coverage, we need the original effective date, not the current enrollment effective date.
Medical Insurance is provided through a Union
‘X’ box number seven (7) on page 3 of the NMSN (Employer Response) advising us that you are mailing Part B to the union that provides medical coverage. Mail Part B to the union that provides medical coverage. The union will then mail us Part B upon completion.
The Employee Advises his/her Spouse Carries Medical Coverage
Advise the employee to call us directly as we need proof of coverage. We will send you a Termination of NMSN once we receive verification from your employee. Do not terminate coverage until you receive paperwork from us advising to do so.
The employee states the child is already enrolled in Medicaid
The employer’s responsibilities under NMSN are not affected by the child’s enrollment in Medicaid or CareSource. Please continue with enrollment of child(ren) as specified in NMSN.
The employee says the child doesn’t reside in the insurer’s service area
The employer’s responsibilities under the NMSN are the same regardless of the child’s residence. The employee will need to contact the CSEA or the court to have the order changed.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I, the employer, know if coverage is affordable?
Add the child support obligation plus the monthly insurance premium paid by the employee. If the total is higher than the percentage they are allowed to withhold under the Consumer Credit Protection Act then it’s not affordable and you are not to enroll the child(ren) in medical coverage.
Are you asking for the employer’s monthly cost for coverage or the employee’s?
Anytime the CSEA requests the cost for coverage regarding medical insurance, we are always asking for the employee’s out of pocket cost. It is not necessary for you to provide your cost for coverage as you, the employer, are not the medical insurance obligor.
Why do I get a termination of NMSN and then a day later receive a NMSN for the same parties?
This usually happens when a new case number has been assigned to the case. Everything else will be the same except for the case number and the order number. When we are closing one case the NMSN termination notice needs to go out for that case/order number. We will then issue a NMSN under the new case/order number.