SEC. 43-19-45. State parent locator service; cooperation of state agencies and the like with Child Support Unit; confidentiality of records; authority to request employment verification, address and social security number of absent or nonsupporting parent or alleged parent; confidentiality of records; penalties.
(1) The Child Support Unit shall establish a state parent locator service for the purpose of locating absent and nonsupporting parents and alleged parents, which will utilize all appropriate public and private locator sources. In order to carry out the responsibilities imposed under Sections 43-19-31 through 43-19-53, the Child Support Unit may secure by administrative subpoena from the customer records of public utilities and cable television companies the names and addresses of individuals and the names and addresses of employers of such individuals that would enable the location of parents or alleged parents who have a duty to provide support and maintenance for their children. The Child Support Unit may also administratively subpoena any and all financial information, including account numbers, names and social security numbers of record for assets, accounts, and account balances from any individual, financial institution, business or other entity, public or private, needed to establish, modify or enforce a support order. No entity complying with an administrative subpoena to supply the requested information of whatever nature shall be liable in any civil action or proceeding on account of such compliance. Full faith and credit shall be given to all uniform administrative subpoenas issued by other state child support units. The recipient of an administrative subpoena shall supply said Child Support Unit, other state and federal IV-D agencies, its attorneys, investigators, probation officers, county or district attorneys in this state, all information relative to the location, employment, employment related benefits including, but not limited to, availability of medical insurance, income and property of such parents and alleged parents and with all information on hand relative to the location and prosecution of any person who has, by means of a false statement or misrepresentation or by impersonation or other fraudulent device, obtained Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to which he or she was not entitled, notwithstanding any provision of law making such information confidential. The Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services and any other agency in this state using the facilities of the Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services are directed to permit the Child Support Unit access to their files, inclusive of those maintained for other state agencies, for the purpose of locating absent and nonsupporting parents and alleged parents, except to the extent that any such access would violate any valid federal statute or regulation issued pursuant thereto. The Child Support Unit, other state and federal IV-D agencies, its attorneys, investigators, probation officers, or county or district attorneys, shall use such information only for the purpose of investigating or enforcing the support liability of such absent parents or alleged parents or for the prosecution of other persons mentioned herein. Neither the Child Support Unit nor said authorities shall use the information, or disclose it, for any other purpose. All records maintained pursuant to the provisions of Sections 43-19-31 through 43-19-53 shall be confidential and shall be available only to the Child Support Unit, other state and federal IV-D agencies, the attorneys, investigators and other staff employed or under contract under Sections 43-19-31 through 43-19-53, district or county attorneys, probation departments, child support units in other states, and courts having jurisdiction in paternity, support or abandonment proceedings. The Child Support Unit may release to the public the name, photo, last known address, arrearage amount and other necessary information of a parent who has a judgment against him for child support and is currently in arrears in the payment of this support. Such release may be included in a "Most Wanted List" or other media in order to solicit assistance.
(2) The Child Support Unit shall have the authority to secure information from the records of the Mississippi Employment Security Commission that may be necessary to locate absent and nonsupporting parents and alleged parents under the provisions of Sections 43-19-31 through 43-19-53. Upon request of the Child Support Unit, all departments, boards, bureaus and agencies of the state shall provide to the Child Support Unit verification of employment or payment and the address and social security number of any person designated as an absent or nonsupporting parent or alleged parent. In addition, upon request of the Child Support Unit, the Mississippi Employment Security Commission, or any private employer or payor of any income to a person designated as an absent or nonsupporting parent or alleged parent, shall provide to the Child Support Unit verification of employment or payment and the address and social security number of the person so designated. Full faith and credit shall be given to such notices issued by child support units in other states. All such records and information shall be confidential and shall not be used for any purposes other than those specified by Sections 43-19-31 through 43-19-53. The violation of the provisions of this subsection shall be unlawful and any person convicted of violating the provisions of this subsection shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall pay a fine of not more than Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00).
(3) Federal and state IV-D agencies shall have access to the state parent locator service and any system used by the Child Support Unit to locate an individual for purposes relating to motor vehicles or law enforcement. No employer or other source of income who complies with this section shall be liable in any civil action or proceeding brought by the obligor or obligee on account of such compliance.
SOURCES: Laws, 1976, ch. 483, Sec. 8; 1988, ch. 345; 1990, ch. 543, Sec. 1; 1993, ch. 333, Sec. 1; 1993, ch. 525, Sec. 1, eff from and after July 2, 1993. 1997 Laws, Chapter 588, Sec. 13, SB2164, Effective July 1, 1997. Amended by Laws 2000, Ch. 530, Sec. 2, SB2840, eff. July 1, 2000.
PREVIOUS VERSIONS: Pre-2000