2000 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A; Ways and Means
By: Representative Reeves
House Bill 986
AN ACT TO PROVIDE THAT GAMING AND BINGO PROCEEDS SHALL BE SUBJECT TO CHILD SUPPORT JUDGMENTS; TO REQUIRE REPORTING OF SUCH PROCEEDS; TO PROVIDE PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF THIS ACT; TO AMEND SECTION 93-11-71, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT; TO ENCOURAGE GAMING ENTITIES NOT SUBJECT TO STATE REGULATION TO COMPLY WITH THIS ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) Gaming proceeds (proceeds) shall be subject to encumbrance for delinquent child support payments assessed by a court of competent jurisdiction or as otherwise provided in Titles 43 and 93, Mississippi Code of 1972.
(2) Proceeds in the amount of One Thousand Two Hundred Dollars ($1,200.00) or more for slot machines and in the amount of Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) or more for all games except slot machines as the term "game" is defined in Section 75-76-5 shall be reported by the payor to the Mississippi Department of Human Services, Division of Child Support Enforcement (the department) pursuant to the provisions set forth herein.
(3) Any person to whom a duty of child support is owed must provide a copy of the order requiring a payee to pay such child support to the department in order to receive proceeds under this act. The order shall be maintained in a registry by the department which shall be current and which shall be easily accessed by a payor through electronic media or other means which provides instant accessibility.
(4) If it is determined that the payee has a child support delinquency, proceeds up to the full amount of the delinquency shall be withheld and disbursed to the department or to the attorney of record in cases not involving the department. If a payee contests such delinquency, the proceeds shall be held by the department until the final disposition of such contest. Proceeds beyond the amount of the delinquency shall be delivered to the payee.
(5) The payee shall have available to him or her the opportunity to contest the accuracy of said payee's identity or the reported amount of the delinquency:
(a) The payee shall have the right to a review of the department's claim of the proceeds. To request such review, the payee must contact the office of the department in the county in which the child support order is entered. Such contact must be made within five (5) business days from the date upon which the payee seeks payment of the proceeds from the payor.
(b) The department shall grant a review which shall occur within twenty-four (24) business hours if contact is made with the office by personal appearance, telephone or electronic medium. If contact is made by writing, such review shall occur within five (5) business days of receipt of such contact.
(c) The payee may contest the determination of the review by filing a petition with a court of competent jurisdiction as in any matter governed by Rule 81(d)(2) of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure. Service upon the department shall be made as provided by Rule 4(d)(5).
(d) Throughout the review and determination processes, the proceeds shall be held by the department in an account of the department's choosing, and shall be delivered to the payee, should he or she prevail.
(e) Any administrative and legal fees incurred by the payor or the department throughout the procedures described herein or pursuant to such procedures shall be assessed to the payee in the event the proceeds are forwarded to the department.
(6) In proceedings not involving the department a payee shall have thirty (30) days from the commencement of proceedings under this act to contest such proceedings. A contest of such proceedings shall be in the court which issued the obligation of support against the payee.
(a) "Gaming proceeds" or "proceeds" shall mean any monies paid in lump sum or otherwise to an individual from lotteries, games or gambling games as defined by Section 75-76-5(k), or games or gambling games as described by Section 97-33-50, et seq.
(b) "Child support delinquency" shall have the same meaning as that given it in Section 93-11-101.
(c) "Payor" shall mean the individual, agent or entity, licensed or unlicensed, disbursing the gaming proceeds to the payee.
(d) "Payee" shall mean the gaming activity participant to whom the gaming proceeds are due.
(8) Failure by the payor or payee to comply with the provisions of this section shall subject the payor or payee to a fine of not less than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00).
(9) Notwithstanding any provision of this or any other section of the Mississippi Code, the Department of Human Services shall not be prohibited from entering into a contractual or other similar arrangement with any individual, agent, entity or payor conducting such games or gambling games in Mississippi as are addressed herein.
(10) A payor shall be immune from any civil action for compliance with the provisions of this act provided that such compliance is in good faith.
SECTION 2. Section 93-11-71, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
93-11-71. (1) Whenever a court orders any person to make periodic payments of a sum certain for the maintenance or support of a child, and whenever such payments as have become due remain unpaid for a period of at least thirty (30) days, a judgment by operation of law shall arise against the obligor in an amount equal to all payments which are then due and owing.
(a) A judgment arising under this section shall have the same effect and be fully enforceable as any other judgment entered in this state. A judicial or administrative action to enforce said judgment may be commenced at any time; and
(b) Such judgments arising in other states by operation of law shall be given full faith and credit in this state.
(2) Any judgment arising under the provisions of this section shall operate as a lien upon all the property of the judgment debtor, both real and personal, which lien shall be perfected as to third parties without actual notice thereof only upon enrollment on the judgment roll. The department or attorney representing the party to whom support is owed shall furnish an abstract of the judgment for periodic payments for the maintenance and support of a child, along with sworn documentation of the delinquent child support, to the circuit clerk of the county where the judgment is rendered, and it shall be the duty of the circuit clerk to enroll the judgment on the judgment roll. Liens arising under the provisions of this section may be executed upon and enforced in the same manner and to the same extent as any other judgment.
(3) Notwithstanding the provisions in paragraph (2), any judgment arising under the provisions of this section shall subject the following assets to interception or seizure without regard to the entry of the judgment on the judgment roll of the situs district or jurisdiction:
(a) Periodic or lump-sum payments from a federal, state or local agency, including unemployment compensation, workers' compensation and other benefits;
(b) Winnings from lotteries and gaming winnings * * *; (c) Assets held in financial institutions;
(d) Settlements and awards resulting from civil actions; and
(e) Public and private retirement funds, only to the extent that the obligor is qualified to receive and receives a lump sum or periodic distribution from the funds.
(4) In any case in which a child receives assistance from block grants for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and the obligor owes past-due child support, the obligor, if not incapacitated, may be required by the court to participate in any work programs offered by any state agency.
SECTION 3. The Governor shall make a good faith effort to enter into a compact with any Native Americans operating gaming activities to encourage voluntary compliance with the provisions of this act.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2000.