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Child Support Division

Employers: Lump Sum Reporting

Penalties

Lump Sum Payments Employers who fail to comply with the reporting of lump sum payments are subject to penalties set by state law. N.D.C.C. § 14-09-09.34(4) and N.D.C.C. § 14-09-09.3

14-09-09.34. Lump sum payments.

  1. An income payer who has been served with an income withholding order issued under section 14-09-09.15 for an obligor which includes an amount for past-due support shall notify the public authority before making any lump sum payment of one thousand dollars or more to the obligor. "Lump sum payment" includes pay in lieu of vacation or other leave, bonus, commission, and any other payment to an obligor but does not include periodic payments made on regular paydays as compensation for services and does not include reimbursement for expenses incurred by the obligor on behalf of the income payer.
  2. An income payer who provides notice of a lump sum payment to the public authority under subsection 1 may not make more than one-half of the payment to the obligor for thirty days from the date of the notice to the public authority or until the income payer receives written authorization from the public authority to make the lump sum payment to the obligor, whichever occurs first.
  3. Notwithstanding subsection 2, an income payer who provides notice of a lump sum payment to the public authority under subsection 1 may not make a lump sum payment to an obligor if the income payer has been notified that an execution, garnishment, attachment, or other process has been initiated regarding the lump sum payment to satisfy a child support obligation of the obligor.
  4. An income payer who owes a lump sum payment under this section is subject to the duties and liabilities in section 14-09-09.3 unless the context indicates otherwise.
  5. This section does not apply to any portion of a lump sum payment that must be paid to satisfy an income withholding order issued under section 14-09-09.15.

14-09-09.3. Child support - Duties and liabilities of income payer under income withholding order.

  1. Any income payer failing to comply with this section or section 14 09 9.16 may be punished for contempt of court. The court shall first afford such income payer a reasonable opportunity to purge itself of such contempt.
  2. Any income payer who fails or refuses to deliver income pursuant to an income withholding order, when such income payer has had in its possession such income, is personally liable for the amount of such income which the income payer failed or refused to deliver, together with costs, interest, and reasonable attorney's fees. If an income payer fails or refuses to deliver income for more than fourteen business days after the date an obligor is paid, the court shall award damages in an amount equal to two hundred dollars or actual damages caused by the violation, whichever is greater, in addition to costs, interest, late fees, and reasonable attorney's fees. Any damages awarded under this subsection must be reduced by the amount of any late fees for the same payment which have been collected by the public authority under subsection 9 of section 14 09 09.3. Any damages collected by the public authority under this subsection must be paid to the state disbursement unit for distribution under section 14-09-25 and any remaining balance must be paid to the obligor. If an income payer has failed to deliver income for more than one obligor, any damages collected under this section must be divided equally among all affected obligors. Each remedy authorized in this subsection is a remedial sanction as defined in section 27-10-01.1.
  3. Any employer who refuses to employ, dismisses, demotes, disciplines, or in any way penalizes an obligor on account of any proceeding to collect child support, on account of any order or orders entered by the court in such proceeding, on account of the employer's compliance with such order or orders, or on account of an income withholding order, is liable to the obligor for all damages, together with costs, interest thereon, and reasonable attorney's fees resulting from the employer's action. The employer may be required to make full restitution to the aggrieved obligor, including reinstatements and backpay.
  4. An income payer may be enjoined by a court of competent jurisdiction from continuing any action in violation of section 14 09 09.16.
  5. Any contempt proceeding against an income payer under this section must be commenced within one year after the income payer's act or failure to act upon which such proceeding is based.
  6. Compliance by an income payer with an income withholding order operates as a discharge of the income payer's liability to the obligor as to that portion of the obligor's income so affected.
  7. In considering an income withholding order issued by a court or administrative tribunal in a state other than the state of the obligor's principal place of employment, the income payer shall apply the law of the state of the obligor's principal place of employment in determining any withholding terms and conditions not specified in the income withholding order or in section 14-12.2-33.1.
  8. An employer who complies with an income withholding order that is regular on its face is not subject to civil liability to any individual or agency for conduct in compliance with the order.
  9. An income payer who fails to deliver income for more than seven business days after the date one or more obligors are paid may be charged a late fee equal to twenty-five dollars per obligor for each additional business day the payment is delinquent or seventy-five dollars for each additional business day the payment is delinquent, whichever is greater. A late fee charged under this subsection is payable fifteen days after service on the employer, by first-class mail, of notice of the imposition of the late fee. Failure to pay a late fee under this subsection may be punished as a contempt of court. Any late fee collected by the public authority under this subsection must be paid to the state disbursement unit for distribution under section 14-09-25 and any remaining balance must be paid to the obligor. If an income payer has failed to deliver income for more than one obligor, any late fees collected under this section must be divided equally among all affected obligors.

 

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