';


Title 10 Part 1015 → Subpart B

Title 10 → Chapter X → Part 1015 → Subpart B

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 10 Part 1015 → Subpart B

e-CFR data is current as of November 13, 2019

Title 10Chapter XPart 1015 → Subpart B


Title 10: Energy
PART 1015—COLLECTION OF CLAIMS OWED THE UNITED STATES


§1015.200   Scope.

The subpart sets forth the standards for administrative collection of claims under this part. This subpart corresponds to 31 CFR part 901 of the Treasury Federal Claims Collection Standards.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.201   Aggressive agency collection activity.

(a) Heads of DOE Headquarters Elements and Field Elements or their designees must promptly notify the appropriate DOE finance office of claims arising from their operations. A claim will be recorded and controlled by the responsible finance office upon receipt of documentation from a competent authority establishing the amount due.

(b) In accordance with 31 CFR Chapter IX parts 900-904 and this part, DOE will aggressively collect all debts arising out of activities. Collection activities shall be undertaken promptly with follow-up action taken as necessary.

(c) Debts referred or transferred to Treasury, or Treasury-designated debt collection centers under the authority of 31 U.S.C. 3711(g), shall be serviced, collected, or compromised, or the collection action will be suspended or terminated, in accordance with the statutory requirements and authorities applicable to the collection of such debts.

(d) DOE will cooperate with other agencies in its debt collection activities.

(e) DOE will refer debts to Treasury as soon as due process requirements are complete, and should refer such debts no later than 180 days after the debt has become delinquent. On behalf of DOE, Treasury will take appropriate action to collect or compromise the referred debt, or to suspend or terminate collection action thereon, in accordance with the statutory and regulatory requirements and authorities applicable to the debt and action. Appropriate action to collect a debt may include referral to another debt collection center, a private collection contractor, or the DOJ for litigation. (See 31 CFR 285.12, Transfer of Debts to Treasury for Collection.) This requirement does not apply to any debt that:

(1) Is in litigation or foreclosure;

(2) Will be disposed of under an approved asset sale program;

(3) Has been referred to a private collection contractor for a period of time acceptable to Treasury; or

(4) Will be collected under internal offset procedures within three years after the debt first became delinquent.

(f) Treasury is authorized to charge a fee for services rendered regarding referred or transferred debts. DOE will add the fee to the debt as an administrative cost (see §1015.212(c)).

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.202   Demand for payment.

(a) Written demand as described in paragraph (b) of this section will be made promptly upon a debtor of the United States in terms that inform the debtor of the consequences of failing to cooperate with DOE to resolve the debt. Generally, one demand letter issued 30 days after the initial notice, bill, or written demand should suffice. When necessary to protect the Government's interest (for example, to prevent the running of a statute of limitations), written demand may be preceded by other appropriate actions under this Part, including immediate referral for litigation.

(b) Demand letters will inform the debtor of:

(1) The basis for the indebtedness and the rights, if any, the debtor may have to seek review within DOE;

(2) The applicable standards for imposing any interest, penalties, or administrative costs;

(3) The date by which payment should be made to avoid late charges (i.e., interest, penalties, and administrative costs) and enforced collection, which generally should not be more than 30 days from the date that the demand letter is mailed or hand-delivered;

(4) The name, address, and phone number of a contact person or office within DOE;

(5) DOE's intent to refer unpaid debts to Treasury for collection;

(6) DOE's intent to authorize Treasury to add fees for services rendered as an administrative fee;

(7) DOE's intent to authorize Treasury to utilize collection tools such as credit bureau reporting, private collection agencies, administrative wage garnishment, Federal salary offset, tax refund offset, administrative offset, litigation, and other tools, as appropriate, to collect the debt;

(8) DOE's willingness to discuss alternative methods of payment;

(9) The debtor's entitlement to consideration of a waiver, depending on applicable statutory authority; and

(10) DOE's intent to suspend or revoke licenses, permits, or privileges for any inexcusable or willful failure of a debtor to pay such a debt in accordance with DOE regulations or governing procedures.

(c) DOE will seek to ensure that demand letters are mailed or hand-delivered on the same day that they are dated.

(d) DOE will seek to respond promptly to communications from debtors, within 30 days whenever feasible, and will advise debtors who dispute debts to furnish available evidence to support their contentions.

(e) Prior to the initiation of the demand process or at any time during or after completion of the demand process, if DOE determines to pursue, or is required to pursue, offset, the procedures applicable to offset should be followed (see §1015.203 of this subpart). The availability of funds or money for debt satisfaction by offset and DOE's determination to pursue collection by offset shall release DOE from the necessity of further compliance with paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) of this section.

(f) Prior to referring a debt for litigation, DOE should advise each person determined to be liable for the debt that, unless the debt can be collected administratively, litigation may be initiated. This notification should comply with Executive Order 12988 (3 CFR, 1996 Comp, pp. 157-163) and should be given as part of a demand letter under paragraph (b) of this section.

(g) When DOE learns that a bankruptcy petition has been filed with respect to a debtor, before proceeding with further collection action, DOE should immediately seek legal advice from appropriate legal counsel concerning the impact of the Bankruptcy Code on any pending or contemplated collection activities. Unless counsel determines that the automatic stay imposed at the time of filing pursuant to 11 U.S.C. 362 has been lifted or is no longer in effect, in most cases collection activity against the debtor should stop immediately.

(1) After seeking legal advice, a proof of claim should be filed in most cases with the bankruptcy court or the Trustee. DOE will refer to the provisions of 11 U.S.C. 106 relating to the consequences on sovereign immunity of filing a proof of claim.

(2) If DOE is a secured creditor, it may seek relief from the automatic stay regarding its security, subject to the provisions and requirements of 11 U.S.C. 362.

(3) Offset is stayed in most cases by the automatic stay. However, DOE will seek legal advice from counsel to determine whether its payments to the debtor and payments of other agencies available for offset may be frozen until relief from the automatic stay can be obtained from the bankruptcy court. DOE also will seek legal advice from counsel to determine whether recoupment is available.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.203   Collection by administrative offset.

(a) Scope. (1) The term “administrative offset” has the meaning provided in 31 U.S.C. 3701(a)(1).

(2) This section does not apply to:

(i) Debts arising under the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 301, et. seq.) except as provided in 42 U.S.C. 404;

(ii) Payments made under the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 301, et. seq.) except as provided for in 31 U.S.C. 3716(c) (see 31 CFR 285.4, Federal Benefit Offset);

(iii) Debts arising under, or payments made under, the Internal Revenue Code (see 31 CFR 285.2, Tax Refund Offset) or the tariff laws of the United States;

(iv) Offsets against Federal salaries to the extent these standards are inconsistent with regulations published to implement such offsets under 5 U.S.C. 5514 and 31 U.S.C. 3716 (see 5 CFR part 550, subpart K, and 31 CFR 285.7, Federal Salary Offset);

(v) Offsets under 31 U.S.C. 3728 against a judgment obtained by a debtor against the United States;

(vi) Offsets or recoupments under common law, state law, or Federal statutes specifically prohibiting offsets or recoupments of particular types of debts; or

(vii) Offsets in the course of judicial proceedings, including bankruptcy.

(3) Unless otherwise provided for by contract or law, debts or payments that are not subject to administrative offset under 31 U.S.C. 3716 may be collected by administrative offset under the common law or other applicable statutory authority.

(4) Unless otherwise provided by law, administrative offset of payments under the authority of 31 U.S.C. 3716 to collect a debt may not be conducted more than 10 years after the Government's right to collect the debt first accrued, unless facts material to the Government's right to collect the debt were not known and could not reasonably have been known by the official or officials of the Government who were charged with the responsibility to discover and collect such debts. This limitation does not apply to debts reduced to a judgment.

(5) In bankruptcy cases, DOE will seek legal advice from appropriate legal counsel concerning the impact of the Bankruptcy Code, particularly 11 U.S.C. 106, 362, and 553, on pending or contemplated collections by offset.

(b) Mandatory centralized administrative offset. (1) As described in §1015.201(e), under the DCIA, DOE is required to refer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). Administrative offset is one type of collection tool used by Treasury to collect debts referred under 31 CFR 285.12. Thus, by transferring debts to Treasury, DOE will satisfy the requirement to notify Treasury of debts for the purposes of administrative offset and duplicate referrals are not required. A debt, which is not transferred to Treasury for purposes of debt collection, however, may be subject to the DCIA requirement of notification to Treasury for purposes of administrative offset.

(2) The names and taxpayer identifying numbers (TINs) of debtors who owe debts referred to Treasury as described in paragraph (b)(1) of this section shall be compared to the names and TINs on payments to be made by Federal disbursing officials. Federal disbursing officials include disbursing officials of Treasury, the Department of Defense, the United States Postal Service, other Government corporations, and disbursing officials of the United States designated by the Secretary of the Treasury. When the name and TIN of a debtor match the name and TIN of a payee and all other requirements for offset have been met, the payment will be offset to satisfy the debt.

(3) Treasury will notify the debtor/payee in writing that an offset has occurred to satisfy, in part or in full, a past due, legally enforceable delinquent debt. The notice shall include a description of the type and amount of the payment from which the offset was taken, the amount of offset that was taken, the identity of DOE as the creditor agency requesting the offset, and a contact point within DOE who will respond to questions regarding the offset.

(4) As required in 31 CFR 901.3(b)(4), DOE will refer a delinquent debt to Treasury for administrative offset, only after the debtor:

(i) Has been sent written notice of the type and amount of the debt, the intention of DOE to use administrative offset to collect the debt, and an explanation of the debtor's rights under 31 U.S.C. 3716; and

(ii) Has been given:

(A) The opportunity to inspect and copy DOE records related to the debt;

(B) The opportunity for a review within DOE of the determination of indebtedness; and

(C) The opportunity to make a written agreement to repay the debt.

(iii) DOE may omit the procedures set forth in paragraph (a)(4) of this section when:

(A) The offset is in the nature of a recoupment;

(B) The debt arises under a contract as set forth in Cecile Industries, Inc. v. Cheney, 995 F.2d 1052 (Fed. Cir. 1993) (notice and other procedural protections set forth in 31 U.S.C. 3716(a) do not supplant or restrict established procedures for contractual offsets accommodated by the Contracts Disputes Act); or

(C) In the case of non-centralized administrative offsets conducted under paragraph (c) of this section, DOE first learns of the existence of the amount owed by the debtor when there is insufficient time before payment would be made to the debtor/payee to allow for prior notice and an opportunity for review. When prior notice and an opportunity for review are omitted, DOE shall give the debtor such notice and an opportunity for review as soon as practicable and shall promptly refund any money ultimately found not to have been owed to the Government.

(iv) When DOE previously has given a debtor any of the required notice and review opportunities with respect to a particular debt (see §1015.202), DOE need not duplicate such notice and review opportunities before administrative offset may be initiated.

(5) When DOE refers delinquent debts to Treasury, DOE must certify, in a form acceptable to Treasury, that:

(i) The debt(s) is (are) past due and legally enforceable; and

(ii) DOE has complied with all due process requirements under 31 U.S.C. 3716(a) and DOE regulations.

(6) Payments that are prohibited by law from being offset are exempt from centralized administrative offset. Treasury may exempt classes of DOE payments from centralized offset upon the written request of the Secretary of DOE.

(7) In accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3716(f), Treasury may waive the provisions of the Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 1988 concerning matching agreements and post-match notification and verification (5 U.S.C. 552a(o) and (p)) for centralized administrative offset upon receipt of a certification from DOE that the due process requirements enumerated in 31 U.S.C. 3716(a) have been met. The certification of a debt in accordance with paragraph (b)(5) of this section will satisfy this requirement. If such a waiver is granted, only the Data Integrity Board of Treasury is required to oversee any matching activities, in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3716(g). This waiver authority does not apply to offsets conducted under paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section.

(c) Non-centralized administrative offset. (1) Generally, non-centralized administrative offsets are ad hoc case-by-case offsets that DOE conducts, at DOE's discretion, internally or in cooperation with the agency certifying or authorizing payments to the debtor. Unless otherwise prohibited by law, when centralized administrative offset is not available or appropriate, past due, legally enforceable non-tax delinquent debts may be collected through non-centralized administrative offset. In these cases, DOE may make a request directly to a payment-authorizing agency to offset a payment due a debtor to collect a delinquent debt. For example, it may be appropriate for DOE to request that the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) offset a Federal employee's lump sum payment upon leaving Government service to satisfy an unpaid advance.

(2) DOE shall comply with offset requests by creditor agencies to collect debts owed to the United States, unless the offset would not be in the best interest of the United States with respect to the program of DOE, or would otherwise be contrary to law. Appropriate use will be made of the cooperative efforts of other agencies in effecting collection by administrative offset.

(3) When collecting multiple debts by non-centralized administrative offset, DOE generally will apply the recovered amounts to those debts in accordance with the best interests of the United States, as determined by the facts and circumstances of the particular case, particularly the applicable statute of limitations.

(d) Requests to OPM to offset a debtor's anticipated or future benefit payments under the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund. Upon providing OPM written certification that a debtor has been afforded the procedures provided in paragraph (b)(4) of this section, DOE may request OPM to offset a debtor's anticipated or future benefit payments under the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund (Fund) in accordance with regulations codified at 5 CFR 831.1801-831.1808. Upon receipt of such a request, OPM will identify and “flag” a debtor's account in anticipation of the time when the debtor requests, or becomes eligible to receive, payments from the Fund. This will satisfy any requirement that offset be initiated prior to the expiration of the time limitations referenced in paragraph (a)(4) of this section.

(e) Review requirements. (1) For purposes of this section, whenever DOE is required to afford a debtor a review within the agency, DOE shall provide the debtor with a reasonable opportunity for an oral hearing when the debtor requests reconsideration of the debt and DOE determines that the question of the indebtedness cannot be resolved by review of the documentary evidence, for example, when the validity of the debt turns on an issue of credibility or veracity.

(2) Unless otherwise required by law, an oral hearing under this section is not required to be a formal evidentiary hearing, although DOE will carefully document all significant matters discussed at the hearing.

(3) This section does not require an oral hearing with respect to debt collection systems in which a determination of indebtedness rarely involves issues of credibility or veracity and DOE has determined that review of the written record is ordinarily an adequate means to correct prior mistakes.

(4) In those cases when an oral hearing is not required by this section, DOE will accord the debtor a “paper hearing,” that is, a determination of the request for reconsideration based upon a review of the written record.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.204   Reporting debts.

(a) DOE may disclose delinquent debts to consumer reporting agencies in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3711(e), the DCIA, the revised Federal Claims Collection Standards (31 CFR parts 900-904) published November 22, 2000, and other applicable authorities. DOE will ensure that all of the rights and protections afforded to the debtor under 31 U.S.C. 3711(e) have been fulfilled. Additional guidance is contained in Treasury's “Guide to the Federal Credit Bureau Program,” revised October 2001.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e), under the DCIA (31 U.S.C. 3711(g)), DOE is required to transfer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury will report debts it is collecting to the appropriate designated credit reporting agencies on behalf of DOE. A debt not transferred to Treasury for purposes of debt collection, however, may be subject to the DCIA requirement to report all non-tax delinquent consumer debts to credit reporting agencies.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.205   Credit reports.

(a) In order to aid DOE in making appropriate determinations as to the collection and compromise of claims; the collection of interest, penalties, and administrative costs; and the likelihood of collecting the claim, DOE may institute a credit investigation of the debtor at any time following receipt of knowledge of the claim.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e), under the DCIA (31 U.S.C. 3711(g)), DOE is required to transfer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury may also institute a credit investigation of the debtor on behalf of DOE.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.206   Contracting with private collection contractors and with entities that locate and recover unclaimed assets.

(a) DOE may contract with private collection contractors in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3718(d), the DCIA, the revised Federal Claims Collection Standards (31 CFR parts 900-904) published November 22, 2000, and other applicable authorities.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e), under the DCIA, DOE is required to transfer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing) under 31 U.S.C. 3711(g). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury may refer delinquent debts to private collection contractors on behalf of DOE.

(c) DOE may enter into contracts for locating and recovering assets of the United States, such as unclaimed assets. DOE must establish procedures acceptable to Treasury before entering into contracts to recover assets of the United States held by a state government or a financial institution.

(d) DOE may enter into contracts for debtor asset and income search reports. In accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3718(d), such contracts may provide that the fee a contractor charges DOE for such services may be payable from the amounts recovered, unless otherwise prohibited by statute.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.207   Suspension or revocation of eligibility for loans and loan guaranties, licenses, permits, or privileges.

(a) Unless waived by the Secretary of DOE or his designee, DOE may not extend financial assistance in the form of a loan, loan guarantee, or loan insurance to any person who DOE knows to be delinquent on a non-tax debt owed to a Federal agency. This prohibition does not apply to disaster loans. The authority to waive the application of this section may be delegated to the Chief Financial Officer and redelegated only to the Deputy Chief Financial Officer of DOE. DOE may extend credit after the delinquency has been resolved. See 31 CFR 285.13 (Barring Delinquent Debtors From Obtaining Federal Loans or Loan Insurance or Guarantees).

(b) In non-bankruptcy cases, DOE offices seeking the collection of statutory penalties, forfeitures, or other types of claims should consider the suspension or revocation of licenses, permits, or other privileges for any inexcusable or willful failure of a debtor to pay such a debt in accordance with DOE's regulations or governing procedures. The debtor should be advised in DOE's written demand for payment of DOE's ability to suspend or revoke licenses, permits, or privileges. Any DOE office making, guaranteeing, insuring, acquiring, or participating in loans should consider suspending or disqualifying any lender, contractor, or broker from doing further business with DOE or engaging in programs sponsored by DOE if such lender, contractor, or broker fails to pay its debts to the Government within a reasonable time or if such lender, contractor, or broker has been suspended, debarred, or disqualified from participation in a program or activity by another Federal agency. The failure of any surety to honor its obligations in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 9305 should be reported to Treasury. Treasury will forward to all interested agencies notification that a surety's certificate of authority to do business with the Government has been revoked by Treasury.

(c) The suspension or revocation of licenses, permits, or privileges also should extend to Federal programs or activities that are administered by the states on behalf of the Federal Government, to the extent that they affect the Federal Government's ability to collect money or funds owed by debtors. Therefore, states that manage Federal activities, pursuant to approval from DOE, should ensure that appropriate steps are taken to safeguard against issuing licenses, permits, or privileges to debtors who fail to pay their debts to the Federal Government.

(d) In bankruptcy cases, before advising the debtor of DOE's intention to suspend or revoke licenses, permits, or privileges, DOE will seek legal advice from counsel concerning the impact of the Bankruptcy Code, particularly 11 U.S.C. 362 and 525, which may restrict such action.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.208   Administrative wage garnishment.

(a) DOE may use administrative wage garnishment to collect money from a debtor's disposable pay to satisfy delinquent debt in accordance with section 31001(o) of the DCIA, codified at 31 U.S.C. 3720D. Treasury has issued regulations implementing the administrative wage garnishment provisions contained in the DCIA, at 31 CFR 285.11. DOE has adopted these regulations in their entirety.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e) of this part, under the DCIA (31 U.S.C. 3711(g)), DOE is required to transfer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury may use administrative wage garnishment on behalf of DOE.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.209   Tax refund offset.

(a) DOE may authorize the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to offset a tax refund to satisfy delinquent debt in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3720A, Reduction of Tax Refund by Amount of Debt. Treasury has issued regulations implementing the tax refund offset as part of Treasury's mandatory centralized offset at 31 CFR 285.2, Offset of Tax Refund to Collect Past-Due, Legally Enforceable Non-tax Debt. DOE has adopted 31 U.S.C. 3720A and 31 CFR 285.2 in their entirety. The due process requirements of 31 U.S.C. 3720A are contained in §§1015.203(b)(4), and 1015.203(e) of this part.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e) of this part, under the DCIA (31 U.S.C. 3711(g)), DOE is required to transfer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury may use tax refund offset on behalf of DOE.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.210   Liquidation of collateral.

(a) DOE may liquidate security or collateral through the exercise of a power of sale in the security instrument or a nonjudicial foreclosure, and apply the proceeds to the applicable debt(s), if the debtor fails to pay the debt(s) within a reasonable time after demand and if such action is in the best interest of the United States. Collection from other sources, including liquidation of security or collateral, is not a prerequisite to requiring payment by a surety, insurer, or guarantor unless such action is expressly required by statute or contract.

(b) When DOE learns that a bankruptcy petition has been filed with respect to a debtor, DOE will seek legal advice from counsel concerning the impact of the Bankruptcy Code, including, but not limited to, 11 U.S.C. 362, to determine the applicability of the automatic stay and the procedures for obtaining relief from such stay prior to proceeding under paragraph (a) of this section.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.211   Collection in installments.

(a) Whenever feasible, DOE shall collect the total amount of a debt in one lump sum. If a debtor is financially unable to pay a debt in one lump sum, DOE may accept payment in regular installments. DOE will obtain a current financial statement showing the debtor's assets, liabilities, income, and expenses from debtors who represent that they are unable to pay in one lump sum, and independently verify such representations whenever possible. DOE may also obtain credit reports or other financial information to assess installment requests. DOE may use its own financial information form or a DOJ form, such as the Financial Statement of Debtor (OBD-500) (see §1015.302(g) of this part). When DOE agrees to accept payments in regular installments, it will obtain a legally enforceable, written agreement from the debtor that specifies all of the terms of the arrangement and that contains a provision accelerating the debt in the event of default.

(b) The size and frequency of installment payments should bear a reasonable relation to the size of the debt and the debtor's ability to pay. If possible, the installment payments should be sufficient in size and frequency to liquidate the debt in three years or less.

(c) Security for deferred payments should be obtained in appropriate cases. DOE may accept installment payments notwithstanding the refusal of the debtor to execute a written agreement or to give security, at DOE's option.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.212   Interest, penalties and administrative costs.

(a) Except as provided in paragraphs (g), (h), and (i) of this section, DOE shall charge interest, penalties and administrative costs on debts owed to the United States pursuant to 31 U.S.C. 3717. DOE shall mail or hand-deliver a written notice to the debtor, at the debtor's most recent address available to DOE, explaining DOE's requirements concerning these charges except where these requirements are included in a contractual or repayment agreement. These charges shall continue to accrue until the debt is paid in full or otherwise resolved through compromise, termination, or waiver of the charges.

(b) DOE shall charge interest on debts owed the United States as follows:

(1) Interest shall accrue from the date of delinquency, or as otherwise provided by law.

(2) Unless otherwise established in a contract, repayment agreement, or by statute, the rate of interest charged shall be the rate established annually by Treasury in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 3717. Pursuant to 31 U.S.C 3717, DOE may charge a higher rate of interest if it reasonably determines that a higher rate is necessary to protect the rights of the United States. DOE will document the reason(s) for its determination that the higher rate is necessary.

(3) The rate of interest, as initially charged, shall remain fixed for the duration of the indebtedness. When a debtor defaults on a repayment agreement and seeks to enter into a new agreement, DOE may require payment of interest at a new rate that reflects the current value of funds to the Treasury at the time the new agreement is executed. Interest shall not be compounded, that is, interest shall not be charged on interest, penalties, or administrative costs required by this section. If, however, a debtor defaults on a previous repayment agreement, charges that accrued but were not collected under the defaulted agreement shall be added to the principal under the new repayment agreement.

(c) DOE shall assess administrative costs incurred for processing and handling delinquent debts. The calculation of administrative costs should be based on actual costs incurred or upon estimated costs as determined by the assessing office.

(d) Unless otherwise established in a contract, repayment agreement, or by statute, DOE shall charge a penalty, pursuant to 31 U.S.C. 3717(e)(2), not to exceed six percent a year on the amount due on a debt that is delinquent for more than 90 days. This charge shall accrue from the date of delinquency.

(e) DOE may increase an “administrative debt” by the cost of living adjustment in lieu of charging interest and penalties under this section. “Administrative debt” includes, but is not limited to, a debt based on fines, penalties, and overpayments, but does not include a debt based on the extension of Government credit, such as those arising from loans and loan guaranties. The cost of living adjustment is the percentage by which the Consumer Price Index for the month of June of the calendar year preceding the adjustment exceeds the Consumer Price Index for the month of June of the calendar year in which the debt was determined or last adjusted. Increases to administrative debts shall be computed annually. DOE will use this alternative only when there is a legitimate reason to do so, such as when calculating interest and penalties on a debt would be extremely difficult because of the age of the debt.

(f) When a debt is paid in partial or installment payments, amounts received by DOE shall be applied first to outstanding penalties, second to administrative costs, third to interest, and last to principal.

(g) DOE shall waive the collection of interest and administrative costs imposed pursuant to this section on the portion of the debt that is paid within 30 days after the date on which interest began to accrue. DOE may extend this 30-day period on a case-by-case basis. In addition, DOE may waive interest, penalties, and administrative costs charged under this section, in whole or in part, without regard to the amount of the debt, either under the criteria set forth in these standards for the compromise of debts, or if DOE determines that collection of these charges is against equity and good conscience or is not in the best interest of the United States.

(h) When a debtor requests a waiver or review of the debt, DOE will continue to accrue interest, penalties, and administrative costs during the period collection activity is suspended. Upon completion of DOE's review, interest, penalties, and administrative costs related to the portion of the debt found to be without merit will be waived.

(i) DOE is authorized to impose interest and related charges on debts not subject to 31 U.S.C. 3717, in accordance with the common law.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.213   Analysis of costs.

DOE will prepare periodic comparisons of costs incurred and amounts collected. Data on costs and corresponding recovery rates for debts of different types and in various dollar ranges will be used to compare the cost effectiveness of alternative collection techniques, establish guidelines with respect to points at which costs of further collection efforts are likely to exceed recoveries, assist in evaluating offers in compromise, and establish minimum debt amounts below which collection efforts need not be taken.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.214   Use and disclosure of mailing addresses.

(a) When attempting to locate a debtor in order to collect or compromise a debt under §§1015.100-105 of this part or other authority, DOE may send a request to Treasury to obtain a debtor's mailing address from the records of the IRS.

(b) DOE may use mailing addresses obtained under paragraph (a) of this section to enforce collection of a delinquent debt and may disclose such mailing addresses to other agencies and to collection agencies for collection purposes.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.215   Federal salary offset.

(a) DOE may authorize Treasury to offset a Federal salary to satisfy delinquent debt in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 5514, Installment Deduction for Indebtedness to the United States; 5 CFR 550.1101 through 550.1108, Collection by Offset from Indebted Government Employees; 31 CFR parts 900-904, the revised Federal Claims Collection Standards; and 31 CFR 285.7, Salary Offset. DOE shall ensure that all of the rights and protections afforded to the debtor under 5 U.S.C. 5514 and 31 CFR 901.3 have been fulfilled. Claims due from Federal employees will be collected in accordance with DOE Order 2200.2B, Collection from Current and Former Employees for Indebtedness to the United States.

(b) As described in §1015.201(e), under the DCIA (31 U.S.C. 3711(g)), DOE is required to refer all debts over 180 days delinquent to Treasury for purposes of debt collection (i.e., cross-servicing). As part of its regular debt collection procedures, Treasury may use Federal salary offset on behalf of DOE.

return arrow Back to Top

§1015.216   Exemptions.

(a) The preceding sections of this part, to the extent they reflect remedies or procedures prescribed by the Debt Collection Act of 1982 and the DCIA, such as administrative offset, use of credit bureaus, contracting for collection agencies, and interest and related charges, do not apply to debts arising under, or payments made under, the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (26 U.S.C. 1, et seq.); the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 301, et seq.) except to the extent provided under 42 U.S.C. 404 and 31 U.S.C. 3716(c); or the tariff laws of the United States. These remedies and procedures, however, may be authorized with respect to debts that are exempt from the Debt Collection Act of 1982 and the DCIA, to the extent that they are authorized under some other statute or the common law.

(b) This section should not be construed as prohibiting the use of these authorities or requirements when collecting debts owed by persons employed by agencies administering the laws cited in paragraph (a) of this section unless the debt arose under those laws.

return arrow Back to Top