Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 2. Administrative Enforcement of Support

Central Unit For Information And Administration -- Cooperation Enjoined -- Availability Of Records

40-5-206. Central unit for information and administration -- cooperation enjoined -- availability of records. (1) The department shall establish a central unit to serve as a registry for the receipt of information, for answering IV-D inquiries concerning deserting parents, for receiving and answering requests for information made by consumer reporting agencies under 40-5-261, to coordinate and supervise departmental activities in relation to deserting parents, and to ensure effective cooperation with law enforcement agencies.

(2) During or in anticipation of a delinquency, enforcement, or modification proceeding, a proceeding to establish child or medical support or paternity, an attempt to locate an obligor, or a contested case, the department or other IV-D agency may request and, notwithstanding any statute making the information confidential, all state, county, and city agencies, officers, and employees shall provide on request information, if known, concerning an obligor or obligee or as an aid to the operation of the IV-D program, including:

(a) name;

(b) residential and mailing addresses;

(c) date of birth;

(d) social security number;

(e) wages or other income;

(f) number of dependents claimed for state and federal income tax withholding purposes;

(g) employer's name, address, federal employer identification number, North American industry classification system code, active or inactive status of the business and status date, phone number, facsimile number, address type, child support withholding address, and e-mail address;

(h) state and local tax and revenue records of the obligor or obligee or an entity in which the obligor or obligee directly or indirectly has full or partial ownership with rights to participate in general management and control that are derived from the full or partial ownership interest;

(i) penal corrections records;

(j) address, location, and description of any real property or titled personal property;

(k) any other asset in which the obligor or obligee may have an interest, including its location and the extent, nature, and value of the interest; and

(l) the information listed in subsection (2)(g) for all Montana employers for the operation of the directory of new hires established under 40-5-922, including information received by electronic transmission.

(3) Upon service of an administrative subpoena from the department or another IV-D agency during or in anticipation of a delinquency, enforcement, or modification proceeding, a proceeding to establish child or medical support or paternity, an attempt to locate an obligor, or a contested case, public utilities, cable television companies, and financial institutions shall, with regard to an obligor or obligee, provide the department or the requesting IV-D agency with the name and address of the obligor or obligee, the name and address of the obligor's or obligee's employer, and any information on the obligor's or obligee's assets and liabilities contained in customer records.

(4) Any information obtained by the department during the course of a child support investigation that is confidential at the source must be treated by the department as confidential and must be safeguarded accordingly. Absent a specific statutory prohibition to the contrary and subject to subsection (6), the department may release information obtained from nonconfidential public and private sources, including information regarding support orders, judgments, and payment records.

(5) Absent a specific statutory prohibition or rule to the contrary and subject to subsection (6), use or disclosure of information obtained by the department from confidential sources or any information maintained by the department in its records, including the names, addresses, and social security numbers of obligors and obligees, is limited to:

(a) purposes directly related to the provision of services under this chapter;

(b) government attorneys and courts having jurisdiction in support and abandonment proceedings and IV-D agencies engaged in the enforcement of support of minor children under the federal Social Security Act; and

(c) any other use permitted or required by the federal Social Security Act.

(6) The department may not disclose information regarding the whereabouts of a party to another party if:

(a) the department received notice that a protective order with respect to the party has been entered against the other party; or

(b) the department has reason to believe that the release of information may result in physical or emotional harm to the party.

(7) A person or private entity that discloses information to the department in compliance with this section is not liable to the obligor or obligee for negligent disclosure.

(8) An entity failing to comply with this section is subject to the contempt authority of the department under 40-5-226.

History: En. Sec. 10, Ch. 612, L. 1979; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 543, L. 1985; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 418, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 6, Ch. 549, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 631, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 264, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 42, Ch. 552, L. 1997; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 21, L. 2005; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 431, L. 2005.