Debt and the How to Collection Process. Larry W Durant, CPA Chief, Receivable Management Office Farm Service Agency

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1 Debt and the How to Collection Process Larry W Durant, CPA Chief, Receivable Management Office Farm Service Agency

2 Why I Work

3 Back in the Old Days (before 1996) Treasury and OMB combined to coordinate debt collection Assisted federal agencies in collecting debts through IRS (tax refunds) Salary Offset (federal employees) Provided contract for agencies to utilize Private Collection Agencies (PCAs) 85% of payments were made through Treasury

4 Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 Centralized collection of non-tax debt at Treasury Compare name and Tax Payer Identification (TIN) Debtor Federal Payments If match, federal payment is reduced or offset Agencies are required to refer eligible delinquent non-tax debt to TOP with 180 days Treasury collects a fee ($17 - $30) per offset

5 Eligible Delinquent Debt??? Due Process Attempt to notify debtor of amount owed Debtor s rights Government s rights Can t be Current (not delinquent) Appeals Litigation In Bankruptcy

6 Payments eligible for Offset Vendor Payments (100%) Federal Retirement (15%) Federal Salary (15%) Social Security Benefits First $750 exempt for each payment 15% above $750 can be offset

7 Additions to DCIA Tax Refunds Merged into TOP in 1999 IRS Levies Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 Collection of State Income Tax debt by offset of federal tax refunds 1998 IRS Restructuring and Reform Act Child Support Enforcement September Executive Order Ineligible to apply for credit (loans) from the federal government.

8 TOP State Program Delinquent Child Support Obligations US HUD Office of Child Support Enforcement FY13 $1.9 Billion recovered Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) USDA Food and Nutrition Service FY13 $119 Million recovered State Income Tax Program FY 13 $605 Million recovered State Reciprocal Program State/Federal Coordination to offset state payments for federal debts $30.8 Million recovered by states Unemployment Insurance Compensation Program Debt due to fraud or failure to report earnings FY13 $326 Million recovered

9 STATE of KANSAS In FY 2013, recovered $31.8 million through the Treasury Offset Program (TOP). Income Tax $8.0 million Child Support $23.0 million SNAP $0.8 million

10 STATE of MISSOURI In FY 2013, recovered $53.5 million through the Treasury Offset Program (TOP). Income Tax $8.2 million Unemployment $10.3 million Child Support $33.4 million SNAP $1.5 million

11 Types of Debt Referred to TOP Unpaid Loans Overpayments or duplicate payments federal salary benefit payment recipients Misused Grant Funds Fines Penalties Fees

12 Cross Servicing Cross-servicing program administers a contract with PCAs who provide delinquent debt collection services and Treasury refers debts to these PCAs. PCAs have the authority to service, collect, compromise, or suspend or terminate collection action on the debt PCAs charge collection fee of 30-35% of the delinquent balance $100,000 debt PCA will collect $135,000 Agency can no longer work with debtor

13 Other Tools Administrative Wage Garnishment 15% of non-federal salary can be offset Treasury will assist identifying eligible debtors Each agency must publish their own guidelines and conduct hearings Credit Bureau Reporting Consumer vs. Commercial

14 Do Not Pay Initiative Established in June 2010 Help prevent, reduce and stop improper payments from being made Identify and mitigate fraud, waste and abuse Three components 1. Pre Award Verify Eligibility 2. Pre Payment Re-verify and Match 3. Post Payment

15 Do Not Pay Sources Social Security Death Master File GSA System for Award Management Verifies if payments made to debarred individuals HHS List of Excluded Individuals and Entities Verify whether payments are to entities excluded from participating in Federal health care programs TOP Debt Check Verify whether payee owes delinquent non-tax debts Credit Alert Verification Reporting System (CAIVRS) Verify whether an individual is a delinquent Federal borrower SSA s Prisoner Update Processing System Verify whether an individual is incarcerated

16 Data Act of 2014 Digital Accountability and Transparency Act Changes to debt referral Agencies required to refer eligible non-tax debt to Treasury within 120 days instead of 180 days Effective May 19, 2014 Treasury require to report compliance to Congress

17 How do report compliance? Treasury Report on Receivables due from the Public (TROR) Quarterly Report all Establishments Collections Write-off(s) Adjustments Open Receivables Eligible Receivables Referred Receivables TOP Cross Servicing Difference (must explain)

18 Farm Service Agency Debt Portfolio (Accounts Receivable) 29,032 Receivables for $384,229,935^ (Farm Program 27,784 $201,272,266) (Tobacco 1,248 $182,957,669) 1-90 days 10,163 $ 27,367, days 2,146 13,001, days 2,107 10,442, Years 7, ,998, Years* 3,974 81,448, Year* 2,615 37,070,869 Over 10 Years* ,901,703 ^Established $1 Billion in new receivables in FY14 *No longer reported on Financial Statements

19 Farm Service Agency Delinquent Loans Farm Loan Program St Louis 14,869 for $ 933,498,245.99

20 External Collection Activity FY14 Farm Program/Tobacco TOP/Cross $2,260,501 DOJ $5,621,562 Farm Loan Program TOP $5,660,645 NOTE: Total Collections $9 Billion

21 Due Process Day 3 Initial Notification Letter Day 34 First Demand Letter Day 64 Second Demand Letter Day 368 Annual Reminder Letter

22 Debtor s Rights Appeal the determination (within 30 days) County Office Committee State Office Committee National Appeals Division Explanation of the debt Arrangements to establish a mutually acceptable repayment plan

23 FSA s rights Under Federal law and regulations, the following additional actions may be taken by USDA and the Department of Treasury to collect delinquent debts: assessment of interest, administrative costs and penalties administrative garnishment of wages offset of CCC and FSA payments reporting the debt to credit reporting agencies referral of the debt to private collection agencies referral of the debt to agency counsel or the Department of Justice for litigation reporting the debt to the Internal Revenue Service if the debt, or any part of the debt is discharged

24 DCIA Compliance TOP Referral Eligible Debt referred once it reaches 120 days Refer once a week (max days old) Cross Servicing Eligible Debt referred once it reaches 120 days Supporting Documentation is Centralized Certified Debt Reviewed by Examiners Internal Offset will not satisfy Debt within 3 years Refer once a month

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