SECTION 144. The following provision shall be codified as Section 71-3-129, Mississippi Code of 1972:
71-3-129. (1) The Mississippi Department of Human Services, Division of Child Support Enforcement (the department) or the obligee may cause a lien for unpaid and delinquent child or spousal support to be placed upon any workers' compensation benefits payable to an obligor delinquent in child support or spousal support payments where a minor child is living with such spouse and such maintenance or spousal support is collected in conjunction with child support.
(2) The lien shall be effective upon notice being filed with the Executive Director of the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission. The notice shall contain the name and address of the delinquent obligor, the Social Security number of the obligor, if known, the name of the obligee, and the amount of delinquent child or spousal support.
(3) Any person(s), firm(s), corporation(s), including an insurance carrier, making any payment of workers' compensation benefits to such obligor or to his attorney(s), heir(s) or legal representative(s), after receipt of such notice, if support has been assigned to the department pursuant to Section 43-19-31, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be liable to the obligee. In such event, the lien may be enforced by the department against any person(s), firm(s), corporation(s) making the workers' compensation benefit payment.
(4) Upon the filing of a notice under this section, the Executive Director of the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission shall mail to the obligor and to all attorneys and insurance carriers of record, a copy of the notice. The obligor, attorneys and insurance carriers shall be deemed to have received the notice within five (5) days of the mailing of the notice by the Executive Director of the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission. The lien described in this section shall attach to all workers' compensation benefits which are thereafter payable.
(5) In cases in which the department is not a party, the obligee or his attorney shall file notice of the lien with such payor as described in subsection (3) above. This notice shall have attached a certified copy of the court order with all modifications and a sworn statement by the obligee attesting to or certifying the amount of the arrearages.
(6) Notice of the lien shall be filed with the Executive Director of the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission either by serving a certified copy of the court order by first class mail; or by transmittal of the information described in subsection (2) via automated means.
(7) Any amount deducted and withheld pursuant to subsection (1) shall be paid by the commission to the department.
(8) Any amount deducted and withheld pursuant to subsection (1) shall for all purposes be treated as if it were paid to the individual as benefits and paid by such individual to the department in satisfaction of the individual's child support obligations.
(9) For purposes of this section, the term "benefits" means any compensation payable under this chapter (including amounts payable by the commission pursuant to an agreement under any federal law providing for compensation, assistance or allowances with respect to injury or death).
(10) The department and the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission may enter into agreements to carry out the provisions of subsection (6) of this section.
(11) The term "child support obligation" shall be as defined in Section 93-11-101, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SOURCE: 1997 Laws, Chapter 588, Sec. 144, SB2164, Effective July 1, 1997.