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  S.B. No. 1777
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to disbursement of child support payments in Title IV-D
  cases.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 234.010, Family Code, is amended to read
  as follows:
         Sec. 234.010.  DIRECT DEPOSIT AND ELECTRONIC BENEFITS
  TRANSFER OF CHILD SUPPORT PAYMENTS. (a)  The state disbursement
  unit authorized under this chapter may make a direct deposit of
  [transmit] a child support payment to an obligee by electronic
  funds transfer into [if the obligee maintains] an account with a
  financial institution maintained by the obligee. It is the
  responsibility of the obligee to notify the state disbursement unit
  of:
               (1)  the existence of an account;
               (2)  the appropriate routing information for direct
  deposit by electronic funds transfer into an account; and
               (3)  any modification to account information
  previously provided to the state disbursement unit, including
  information that an account has been closed.
         (b)  Except as provided by Subsection (d), the state
  disbursement unit shall deposit a child support payment by
  electronic funds transfer into a debit card account established for
  the obligee by the Title IV-D agency if the obligee:
               (1)  does not maintain an account with a financial
  institution;
               (2)  fails to notify the state disbursement unit of the
  existence of an account maintained with a financial institution; or
               (3)  closes an account maintained with a financial
  institution previously used to accept direct deposit of a child
  support payment without establishing a new account and notifying
  the state disbursement unit of the new account in accordance with
  Subsection (a) [The work group convened under this subchapter may
  develop a plan to assist an obligee who does not have an account
  with a financial institution to obtain an account].
         (c)  The Title IV-D agency shall:
               (1)  issue a debit card to each obligee for whom a debit
  card account is established under Subsection (b); and
               (2)  provide the obligee with instructions for
  activating and using the debit card [work group may determine
  whether it is feasible and cost-effective for the state to
  administer an electronic benefits transfer system for child support
  obligees and may recommend implementation of such a system to the
  Title IV-D agency].
         (d)  An obligee may decline in writing to receive child
  support payments by electronic funds transfer into an account with
  a financial institution or a debit card account and request that
  payments be provided by paper warrants if the obligee alleges that
  receiving payments by electronic funds transfer would impose a
  substantial hardship [After receiving any recommendations by the
  work group under Subsection (c), the Title IV-D agency or the vendor
  selected by the Title IV-D agency to operate the state disbursement
  unit may provide for electronic benefits transfer, if the request
  for proposals issued by the Title IV-D agency and any contract
  resulting from the selection of a vendor to provide the services
  specified in the request for proposals provides for electronic
  benefits transfer].
         (e)  A child support payment disbursed by the state
  disbursement unit by electronic funds transfer into an account with
  a financial institution maintained by the obligee or into a debit
  card account established for the obligee under Subsection (b) is
  solely the property of the obligee [The work group may recommend and
  the Title IV-D agency may establish procedures to implement this
  section.
         [(f)     The Title IV-D agency, after receiving the
  recommendation of the work group, may require an obligee to receive
  payments by direct deposit to the obligee's bank account or by
  electronic benefits transfer to an account established by the Title
  IV-D agency or the state disbursement unit if the account is
  established at no cost to the obligee].
         SECTION 2.  Section 72.101, Property Code, is amended by
  adding Subsection (e) to read as follows:
         (e)  This section does not apply to money collected as child
  support that:
               (1)  is being held for disbursement by the state
  disbursement unit under Chapter 234, Family Code, or a local
  registry, as defined by Section 101.018, Family Code, pending
  identification and location of the person to whom the money is owed;
  or
               (2)  has been disbursed by the state disbursement unit
  under Chapter 234, Family Code, by electronic funds transfer into a
  child support debit card account established for an individual
  under Section 234.010, Family Code, but not activated by the
  individual.
         SECTION 3.  Subdivision (1), Subsection (a), Section 73.001,
  Property Code, is amended to read as follows:
               (1)  "Account" means funds deposited with a depository
  in an interest-bearing account, a checking or savings account, or a
  child support debit card account established under Section 234.010,
  Family Code, or funds received by a depository in exchange for the
  purchase of a stored value card.
         SECTION 4.  Section 234.011, Family Code, is repealed.
         SECTION 5.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution. If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this
  Act takes effect September 1, 2009.
 
 
 
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1777 passed the Senate on
  April 23, 2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 30, Nays 0.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1777 passed the House on
  May 26, 2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 145, Nays 0, two present
  not voting.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
 
  Approved:
 
  ______________________________ 
              Date
 
 
  ______________________________ 
            Governor