110-139.  Location of absent parents.

(a)        The Department of Health and Human Services shall attempt to locate absent parents for the purpose of establishing paternity of and/or securing support for dependent children. The Department is to serve as a registry for the receipt of information which directly relates to the identity or location of absent parents, to assist any governmental agency or department in locating an absent parent, to answer interstate inquiries concerning deserting parents, and to develop guidelines for coordinating activities with any governmental department, board, commission, bureau or agency in providing information necessary for the location of absent parents.

(b)        In order to carry out the responsibilities imposed under this Article, the Department may request from any governmental department, board, commission, bureau or agency information and assistance. All State, county and city agencies, officers and employees shall cooperate with the Department in the location of parents who have abandoned and deserted children with all pertinent information relative to the location, income and property of such parents, notwithstanding any provision of law making such information confidential. Except as otherwise stated in this subsection, all nonjudicial records maintained by the Department pertaining to child-support enforcement shall be confidential, and only duly authorized representatives of social service agencies, public officials with child-support enforcement and related duties, and members of legislative committees shall have access to these records. The payment history of an obligor pursuant to a support order may be examined by or released to the court, the obligor, or the person on whose behalf enforcement actions are being taken or that person's designee. Income and expense information of either parent may be released to the other parent for the purpose of establishing or modifying a support order.

(c)        Notwithstanding any other provision of law making such information confidential, an employer doing business in this State or incorporated under the laws of this State shall provide the Department with the following information upon certification by the Department that the information is needed to locate a parent for the purpose of collecting child support or to enforce an order for child support: full name, social security account number, date of birth, home address, wages, existing or available medical, hospital, and dental insurance coverage, and number of dependents listed for tax purposes.

(c1)      Employment verifications. - For the purpose of establishing, enforcing, or modifying a child support order, the amount of the obligor's gross income may be established by a written statement signed by the obligor's employer or the employer's designee or an Employee Verification form produced by the Automated Collections Tracking System that has been completed and signed by the obligor's employer or the employer's designee. A written statement signed by the employer of the obligor or the employer's designee that sets forth an obligor's gross income, as well as an Employee Verification form signed by the obligor's employer or the employer's designee, shall be admissible evidence in any action establishing, enforcing, or modifying a child support order.

(d)       Notwithstanding any other provision of law making this information confidential, including Chapter 53B of the General Statutes, any utility company, cable television company, or financial institution, including federal, State, commercial, or savings banks, savings and loan associations and cooperative banks, federal or State chartered credit unions, benefit associations, insurance companies, safe deposit companies, money market mutual funds, and investment companies doing business in this State or incorporated under the laws of this State shall provide the Department of Health and Human Services with the following information upon certification by the Department that the information is needed to locate a parent for the purpose of collecting child support or to establish or enforce an order for child support: full name, social security number, address, telephone number, account numbers, and other identifying data for any person who maintains an account at the utility company, cable television company, or financial institution. A utility company, cable television company, or financial institution that discloses information pursuant to this subsection in good faith reliance upon certification by the Department is not liable for damages resulting from the disclosure.

(e)        Subsection (d) of this section shall not apply to telecommunication utilities or providers of electronic communication service to the general public.

(f)        There is established the State Child Support Collection and Disbursement Unit. The duties of the Unit shall be the collection and disbursement of payments under support orders for all cases. The Department may administer and operate the Unit or may contract with another State or private entity for the administration and operation of the Unit. (1975, c. 827, s. 1; 1977, 2nd Sess., c. 1186, s. 15; 1987, c. 591; 1991, c. 419, s. 1; 1995, c. 538, s. 4; 1997-433, ss. 8.1, 9.1; 1997-443, s. 11A.118(a); 1998-17, s. 1; 1999-293, s. 22; 2000-140, s. 20(b); 2001-237, ss. 5, 6; 2003-288, s. 3.1.)