Tax Offset Season

The Trumbull County CSEA has been actively pursuing child support offenders through the Federal and State Tax Offset Programs. These programs are designed to collect delinquent child support from those individuals who are in arrears on their support obligations.

The specific parameters for tax offset are as follows:  For the Federal Program submittal depends upon whether or not the custodial parent was on public assistance. In public assistance cases, the amount owed must be at least $150 with payments delinquent for at least three months. In non-public assistance cases, the amount owed must be at least $500 and the child affected by the order must be minor as of December 31st of the submittal year. Under the Ohio Offset Program, the child support debt must be at least $150 with payments delinquent for three months or longer.

The CSEA's tax offset season begins each year during October when letters go out to our delinquent non-custodial parents informing them of an anticipated tax garnishment action. These letters will bear our Trumbull County letterhead but are actually sent out by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement from a list forwarded by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

Parents receiving the notice from the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement can also expect to receive a similar letter a week or two later from the Ohio Department of Taxation notifying them of an anticipated state income tax interception.

Recipients of these letters can request that the agency conduct a tax offset administrative review. Situations which qualify for administrative review (which can lead to stopping your tax refund from being offset) are as follows:

Once an individual applies for an administrative review, the CSEA has 30 days to determine whether a case should remain eligible for the tax offset or be deleted from the program.

The agency may also be submitting the names of certain obligors (those whose cases on the tax offset list reflect arrearages of $5,000 or more) to the U.S. State Department for action under the Passport Denial Program.