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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title IV
Chapter 17
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F.S. 17.20
17.20 Assignment of claims for collection.
(1) The Chief Financial Officer shall charge the state attorneys with the collection of all claims that are placed in their hands for collection of money or property for the state or any county or special district, or that it otherwise requires them to collect. The charges are evidence of indebtedness of a state attorney against whom any charge is made for the full amount of the claim, until the charges have been collected and paid into the treasury of the state or of the county or special district or the legal remedies of the state have been exhausted, or until the state attorney demonstrates to the Chief Financial Officer that the failure to collect the charges is not due to negligence and the Chief Financial Officer has made a proper entry of satisfaction of the charge against the state attorney.
(2) The Chief Financial Officer may assign the collection of any claim to a collection agent or agents who are registered and in good standing pursuant to chapter 559, if the Chief Financial Officer determines the assignation to be cost-effective. The Chief Financial Officer may authorize the agent or agents to add a fee to the amount to be collected.
(3) Each agency shall be responsible for exercising due diligence in securing full payment of all accounts receivable and other claims due the state.
(a) No later than 120 days after the date on which the account or other claim was due and payable, unless another period is approved by the Chief Financial Officer, and after exhausting other lawful measures available to the agency, each agency shall report the delinquent accounts receivable as directed by the Chief Financial Officer to the appropriate collection agent for further action, excluding those agencies that collect delinquent accounts pursuant to independent statutory authority.
(b) An agency that has delinquent accounts receivable, which the agency considers to be of a nature that assignment to a collection agency would be inappropriate, may request in writing for an exemption for those accounts. The request shall fully explain the nature of the delinquent accounts receivable and the reasons the agency believes such accounts would be precluded from being assigned to a collection agency. The Chief Financial Officer shall disapprove the request in writing unless the agency shows that a demonstrative harm to the state will occur as a result of assignment to a collection agency.
(c) Agencies that have delinquent accounts receivable, which accounts are of such a nature that it would not be appropriate to transfer collection of those delinquent accounts to the Chief Financial Officer within 120 days after the date they are due and payable, may request in writing a different period of time for transfer of collection of such accounts. The request shall fully explain the nature of the delinquent accounts receivable and include a recommendation as to an appropriate period.
(4) Each October 1, each agency shall submit a report to the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Chief Financial Officer which includes:
(a) A detailed list and total of all accounts that were referred for collection and the status of such accounts, including the date referred, any amounts collected, and the total that remains uncollected.
(b) A list and total of all delinquent accounts that were not referred to a collection agency, the reasons for not referring those accounts, and the actions taken by the agency to collect.
(c) A list of all accounts or claims, including a description and the total amount of each account or claim, which were written off or waived by the agency for any reason during the prior fiscal year, the reason for being written off, and whether any of those accounts continue to be pursued by a collection agent.
(5) Each December 1, the Chief Financial Officer shall provide to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives a report that details the following information for any contracted collection agent:
(a) The amount of claims referred for collection by each agency, cumulatively and annually.
(b) The number of accounts by age and amount.
(c) A listing of those agencies that failed to report known claims to the Chief Financial Officer in a timely manner as prescribed in subsection (3).
(d) The total amount of claims collected, cumulatively and annually.
(6) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in any contract providing for the location or collection of unclaimed property, the Chief Financial Officer may authorize the contractor to deduct its fees and expenses for services provided under the contract from the unclaimed property that the contractor has recovered or collected under the contract. The Chief Financial Officer shall annually report to the Governor, President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives the total amount collected or recovered by each contractor during the previous fiscal year and the total fees and expenses deducted by each contractor. 1, 2, ch. 1413, 1863; RS 112; GS 116; RGS 128; CGL 158; ss. 12, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 6, ch. 83-132; s. 62, ch. 95-147; s. 6, ch. 95-312; s. 1, ch. 97-60; s. 34, ch. 2003-261; s. 2, ch. 2010-151; s. 2, ch. 2014-17.