Chapter 5101:1-2 Application Process; Verification

5101:1-2-01 The application process for Ohio works first, disability financial assistance, and refugee cash assistance.

(A) Application processing definitions.

(1) "Assistance group" is a group of recipients receiving benefits together under a specific category of assistance. In the Ohio works first (OWF) program, "assistance group", is defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code, and means a group of individuals treated as a unit for purposes of determining eligibility for and the amount of assistance provided under OWF.

(2) An "authorized representative" is an individual, eighteen years of age or older, who stands in place of the assistance group. The authorized representative may act on behalf of individuals inside or outside the household in which the authorized representative lives.

(3) A "case" consists of one or more assistance groups.

(4) "Household" is defined as a personal place of residence. A commercial establishment such as a hotel or boarding house is not a household. However, a household can exist within a commercial establishment.

(B) What is the application process?

(1) The application process is a series of activities which includes:

(a) A request for assistance,

(b) An interactive interview, and

(c) Approval or denial of benefits.

(2) For OWF applicants the application process also includes:

(a) Prior to authorization, the county agency shall assess, appraise, and enter into a written self sufficiency contract (SSC) for each work eligible individual, minor head of household and adult member of the assistance group, as set forth in rule 5101: 1-3-11 of the Administrative Code.

(b) As agreed in the SSC, the county agency may require a work eligible individual to complete a job search and job readiness applicant assignment as set forth in rule 5101: 1-3-12.5 of the Administrative Code, prior to authorization of OWF benefits as set forth in rule 5101: 1-3-11 of the Administrative Code. In accordance with rule 5101: 9-2-02 of the Administrative Code, if the work eligible individual discloses, has, or appears to have a physical or mental condition that substantially limits one or more major life activities, the county agency shall ensure that the assignment is consistent with its Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) plan in accordance with rule 5101: 9-2-02 of the Administrative Code.

(3) The application process requires the complete cooperation of the assistance group and the prompt responsiveness of the county agency.

(4) The application process shall be administered with courtesy, consideration, and respect.

(5) Administrative duties shall be performed in such a manner as to secure for every assistance group the full amount of benefits to which it is legally entitled according to program regulations.

(6) The distinction must be drawn between a "request for public assistance" (an application) and a "request for information" (an inquiry). An inquiry will not always result in an application. Any individual has the right to apply for benefits for themselves or on behalf of another individual.

(C) What must be included in the application packet?

At the time the application request is made, the following documents are given or sent to the applicant or authorized representative:

(1) The JFS 07200 "Request for Cash, Food Assistance, and Medical Assistance" (rev. 12/2012), which includes the voter registration form. If an assistance group is currently receiving food assistance and decides to apply for cash assistance at recertification, the JFS 07204 "Request to Reapply for Cash and Food Assistance" (rev. 1/2013) complete with a name, address and signature shall establish the date of application for these additional benefits.

(2) The JFS 07501 "Program Enrollment and Benefit Information" (rev. 07/2014).

(D) When is an application packet provided?

(1) The county agency shall provide an application upon request. When the request is made in person at the county agency, the application packet shall be given the same day as the request.

(2) When the county agency receives the request by telephone or letter, the application packet is mailed the day that the request is received.

(3) The right to apply shall not be discouraged or denied. An individual/family who appears ineligible shall still be allowed to exercise the right to apply for assistance.

(E) Who must sign the application?

(1) The application must be signed and dated by one of the following individuals in order to register the application:

(a) A payee for the assistance group;

(b) A caretaker for the assistance group;

(c) Another responsible member of the assistance group;

(d) A spouse or natural or adoptive parent of a member of the assistance group who is not an assistance group member, who resides with the assistance group, and can reasonably be determined to be acting responsibly for the assistance group; or

(e) An authorized representative for the assistance group.

(2) For other assistance groups identified on the application, an individual meeting one of the definitions provided in paragraph (E)(1) of this rule must sign and date the application in order to register the request for assistance for that assistance group. The county agency shall notify the potential assistance groups of this requirement in writing no later than one working day following the interview.

(3) Since the interview may be scheduled after the actual date an application is submitted, and initial benefits are affected by the date of application, the county agency should provide a potential assistance group identified on the application an opportunity to sign and date the application as soon as possible.

(F) What are the requirements for authorized representatives?

(1) The assistance group shall provide a written statement naming the authorized representative and the duties which the named authorized representative may perform on the assistance group's behalf.

(2) When written authorization cannot be obtained because of the individual's incompetency or incapacity, the county agency may waive the written statement and assist in naming a responsible party to act as authorized representative for the assistance group.

(3) The assistance group is responsible for notifying the county agency of any change in the named authorized representative.

(4) When the assistance group has an authorized representative named to act on its behalf, all notices and correspondence issued by the county agency on behalf of the assistance group shall be issued to both the authorized representative and the assistance group.

(5) In situations where an authorized representative provides incorrect or fraudulent eligibility information, the assistance group may still be held liable for any overpayments that occur. The authorized representative will be held responsible for overpayments when the authorized representative is the legal guardian or legal trustee for the assistance group.

(6) If it is determined that the authorized representative has given incorrect information intentionally through no fault of the assistance group, a referral shall be made to the county prosecutor to determine if fraud occurred on the part of the authorized representative. If the prosecutor's determination is that the authorized representative committed fraud, the authorized representative may be found liable for the overpayment.

(G) How is the application completed?

(1) The application should be filled out as completely as possible by the individual signing and dating the application for the assistance group.

(a) If the application is completed at the county agency, the person completing it may not be able to answer all of the questions completely from memory or personal knowledge.

(b) Each question on the application shall be completed to the fullest extent possible and any missing information must be supplied during the interview or through the required verifications.

(c) Even though an application may not be complete, it is still considered a formal application on the date that it is submitted with the date and a signature of an individual meeting one of the definitions set forth in paragraph (E)(1) of this rule.

(2) The assistance group and/or authorized representative shall make an accurate and complete disclosure of all information necessary for a determination of eligibility. Such disclosure shall be made at the time of initial application, at reapplication, and within ten days of the date that any change specifically identified in rule 5101: 1-2-20 of the Administrative Code occurs.

(3) The assistance group's report of an impending change in circumstances does not negate its responsibility to report any change identified in rule 5101: 1-2-20 of the Administrative Code as a reporting requirement within ten days from the date the change actually occurs.

(H) What is the application date and how is an application registered?

(1) The county agency shall accept the application on the day it is turned in to the county agency. The "date of application" is the date on which a signed and dated JFS 07200, or JFS 07204 for existing assistance groups completing a telephone interview, is received by the county agency.

(2) When a signed and dated application is received by the county agency, the county agency shall provide a document that states the application date.

(3) For cases containing multiple assistance group payees, the county agency shall give each assistance group signing the application a receipt showing that assistance group's date of application. For applications returned by mail, the receipt shall be provided at the interview.

(4) Upon receipt of a signed and dated application, the county agency shall enter the information into the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E).

(5) The date of application shall not be delayed by the county agency because of any local office procedure. The date of the interview shall not be used to delay the application date.

(6) The assistance group shall be given the opportunity to complete and return the application on the same date the application is requested. When this occurs, the date of application is the same day as the request.

(7) The county agency shall advise that the date of the application and the beginning date of benefits are dependent upon the date the signed and dated application is returned to the county agency provided all other eligibility factors are met on or before the date received.

(8) When a signed and dated application is returned by mail, the date of application shall be the date the county agency receives the application. When the county agency receives a signed and dated application from the social security administration, the date of application for all public assistance programs, except food assistance, shall be the date the county agency receives the application. All applications received by mail shall be date stamped the day received.

(9) Applications signed through the use of electronic signature techniques or applications containing a handwritten signature and then transmitted by fax or other electronic transmission are acceptable. When an application is submitted by fax or electronically, the date of application shall be the date the county agency receives the application.

(I) What is the role of the county agency in the completion of the application process?

(1) The county agency shall help complete the application when assistance is requested and no other family member, close friend, authorized representative, or other appropriate individual is available.

(2) When the county agency assists or completes an application, the employee of the county agency shall sign his or her name and title/relationship to the assistance group on the application.

(3) A county agency employee shall not alter any answers given by the assistance group on the application. The county agency employee may assist in completing the application by asking the assistance group for answers needed to complete the application. The county agency employee may then mark or fill in the answer on the application.

(4) The normal process of inputting data provided by the applicant during the interview shall not be construed to mean that the county agency has assisted with the completion of the application.

(J) What are the interview requirements?

(1) An interview shall be scheduled as promptly as possible after the receipt of a signed and dated application to insure that an eligible assistance group receives an opportunity to participate within the time frames for completion of the application process pursuant to paragraph (M) of this rule.

(2) If the primary language of the individual completing the interview is not English, the county agency shall offer an interpreter at no cost to the individual. The individual shall not be required to provide his or her own interpreter or use a family member, unless they desire to do so.

(3) If the individual who satisfies the interview requirement for the assistance group is not an assistance group member (e.g., authorized representative), and the county agency questions the information provided by that individual, the county agency retains the right to contact the assistance group to clarify the information.

(4) The county agency shall give a dated receipt for all documents, originals, or copies submitted. When an original document is submitted, the county agency shall copy the document and return the original. If a face-to-face interview is conducted, every effort must be made to copy the documents prior to concluding the interview.

(K) How can the interview be conducted?

(1) The county agency may conduct an:

(a) Office interview;

(b) Telephone interview; or

(c) Home visit (as long as it is scheduled in advance with the assistance group).

(2) The type of interview conducted is left to the county agency's discretion unless the applicant requests a face-to-face interview. The county agency shall grant a face-to-face interview to any assistance group which requests one.

(L) What are the county agency's responsibilities for the interview?

(1) The county agency shall provide the:

(a) JFS 07344 "Direct Deposit Authorization" (rev. 08/2009) if applicable; and

(b) The JFS 07501 if one has not already been provided.

(2) If CRIS-E is unavailable, the JFS 01846, "Case Worksheet: Cash, Food Stamp, and Medical Assistance Interview" (rev. 05/2005), and the JFS 07501 shall be used to conduct the interview. The applicant shall be given a copy of the JFS 07501. The information obtained on the JFS 01846 shall be entered into CRIS-E.

(3) Assist in obtaining verification and completing the voter registration forms if requested by the assistance group.

(4) Gather medical documentation and refer the case to the disability determination unit (DDU) if a member of an assistance group has, appears to have, or alleges to have a physical or mental condition which may limit the member's ability to work pursuant to rules 5101: 1-39-03 and 5101: 1-5-20 of the Administrative Code.

(5) Determine eligibility as soon as possible after the application requirements are complete.

(6) Document the eligibility determination in the case record.

(7) Send the JFS 07092, "Notice to Individuals Applying for or Participating in Ohio Works First (OWF) Regarding Cooperation with the Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA)" (rev. 03/2009), to the child support enforcement agency (CSEA) each time that an individual signs the form to claim good cause for refusal to cooperate with child support.

(M) What is the time frame for determining eligibility?

(1) The determination of eligibility shall be completed within thirty calendar days from the date of application.

(2) No more than forty-five days may elapse between the date of application and the issuance of the benefit, or the notification of the approval or denial of assistance.

(3) A disability financial assistance (DFA) application awaiting a disability determination may pend up to ninety days before the appropriate approval or denial notice is mailed.

(4) The determination of eligibility for DFA shall proceed concurrently with the determination of disability and shall be completed within forty-five days. The forty-five day standard of promptness may not be used as the basis for any denial.

(5) An OWF application awaiting completion of an applicant assignment may pend up to, but no longer than, thirty days from the date of application before authorization.

(6) The time frames may be exceeded in situations where completion of the determination of eligibility is delayed because of circumstances which are considered beyond the control of the county agency or assistance group such as:

(a) Failure, with good cause, to secure necessary verifications;

(b) Failure or delay on the part of an examining physician to provide all needed information.

(7) When calculating the thirty, forty-five or ninety-day time periods, the following provisions are applicable:

(a) The initial day is excluded from the computation and the last day is included;

(b) When the last day of the time period falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the time period shall end on the next working day;

(c) This method shall be used in calculating all time periods, unless specified as working days.

(8) If the application pends longer than thirty days, running record comments shall be documented at least every thirty days with the reason for the delay.

(N) What is the purpose and location of the application interview?

(1) The interview shall be scheduled as promptly as possible after the receipt of a signed and dated application to insure that an eligible assistance group receives an opportunity to participate within the time frames for completion of the application process pursuant to paragraph (M) of this rule.

(2) The interview is used to inform the assistance group of all required verifications, the time period in which the verifications must be submitted to the county agency, and the responsibility of the county agency to assist if help is needed in obtaining any items. The interview is also used to determine if the application has been thoroughly completed and if the information provided accurately represents the assistance group's situation.

(3) If the interview cannot be conducted in the county agency offices or by telephone, alternative locations and/or hours must be arranged.

(O) What shall be covered in the application interview?

(1) The eligibility requirements for cash, medical and food assistance, including issuance and use.

(2) All information contained on the JFS 07501.

(3) The required verifications and information that must be provided. This will include a review of those verifications already provided and those verifications remaining to be secured. The county agency shall also inform the assistance group of assistance that they can provide in securing the required verifications and information.

(4) The importance of abiding by the time limits for providing the verifications and additional information. The county agency shall emphasize that the application cannot be processed until the verifications and additional information are submitted.

(5) The joint responsibility for exploring all the factors of eligibility and the circumstances under which the assistance group will be held responsible for presenting records or documents in its possession to support statements.

(6) The consequences for failing to accurately report the circumstances of the assistance group at the point of application and later if the circumstances should change. Possible recoupment of overpayments and/or referral to law enforcement officials for civil or criminal prosecution could result from a failure to fully and honestly report the circumstances at all times.

(7) The availability, purpose, and provision of appropriate social services programs within and outside the agency regardless of an individual's receipt of financial assistance.

(8) The responsibility of the parent for minor children and spouses for each other.

(9) The ability of the assistance group to meet its needs pending the receipt of the first benefit.

(10) The availability of free legal services through legal aid.

(11) For individuals applying for DFA, interim assistance for individuals who have a supplemental security income (SSI) application pending and an explanation of the SSI case management program.

(12) An explanation of eligibility for a pregnant minor or minor parent and child to receive assistance as set forth in section 5107.24 of the Revised Code.

(13) An explanation of the SSC and the time limit requirements and extensions for the OWF program.

(14) An explanation of the waiver of OWF eligibility requirements due to domestic violence, including the good cause exception for refusal to cooperate with child support when applicable.

(15) An explanation of the individual's rights under the ADA, including the right to request reasonable modification in program activities.

(P) Follow-up after the application interview.

During the interview, the county agency shall offer assistance in getting any additional verifications or information that is needed in order to process the case. The county agency shall use the JFS 07105 "Application/Reapplication Verification Request Checklist" (rev. 3/2013). The checklist must provide a date for the return of the verifications. If the required information and verifications are not received by this date, benefits are denied.

(Q) What is considered a failure in the application process?

Failure to cooperate in the application process and the verification requirements shall result in a denial of the OWF, DFA or refugee cash assistance (RCA) application. Failure occurs:

(1) When the information/verification is not provided after the county agency properly advised what information/verification is needed to determine eligibility provided no request for assistance in obtaining information/verification is received by the county agency; or

(2) When the county agency is not given necessary information to assist in obtaining the verification needed to determine eligibility; or

(3) When the assistance group fails to participate in a scheduled application interview.

(4) For OWF, when any work eligible individual, minor head of household, or adult member of the assistance group fails to enter into a written SSC with the county agency.

Effective: 10/01/2014
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 10/01/2017
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.49 , 5107.02 , 5107.03 , 5107.04 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49 , 5107.02 , 5107.04 , 5107.05 , 5107.12 , 5107.121 , 5107.71 , 5107.711 , 5107.712 , 5107.713 , 5107.714 , 5107.715 , 5107.716 . 5107.717 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 8/1/75, 6/1/76, 7/14/77, 12/31/77, 9/1/82, 11/1/84, 4/1/86, 10/1/87 (Emer.), 12/24/87, 4/1/88 (Emer.), 6/10/88, 1/1/88 (Emer.), 9/1/88, 10/1/88 (Emer.), 10/25/88 (Emer.), 12/20/88, 12/1/89, 4/1/90 (Emer.), 6/22/90, 8/1/90 (Emer.), 10/25/90, 1/1/91 (Emer.), 2/21/91, 4/1/91 (Emer.), 6/1/91, 7/1/91 (Emer.), 9/15/91, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 7/1/92, 1/1/93 (Emer.), 2/11/93, 3/18/93, 5/1/93, 9/1/93, 1/1/94, 1/1/95 (Emer.), 4/1/95, 7/1/95, 10/1/95, 6/1/96, 10/1/96 (Emer.), 12/15/96, 10/1/97 (Emer.), 12/30/97, 7/1/98, 10/1/99, 7/1/00, 8/1/01, 5/2/05, 1/1/08, 5/1/09, 1/1/10, 12/1/10, 3/1/11, 7/1/11, 5/7/12, 10/15/12

5101:1-2-10 The reapplication requirement.

(A) What is the reapplication process?

The reapplication process is a periodic review and confirmation that the assistance group continues to meet all of the eligibility requirements of the program under which benefits are being issued.

(B) When is a reapplication of eligibility required?

(1) Every twelve months for disability financial assistance (DFA) and Ohio works first (OWF) assistance groups not included in paragraph (B)(2) of this rule.

(2) OWF assistance groups under a three-tier sanction who sign the JFS 03804 "Ohio Works First/Food Assistance Sanction Compliance Agreement" ( rev. 8/2013) or the client registry system-enhanced (CRIS-E) generated equivalent form and if it is received by the county agency on or before the last day of the sanction period as set forth in rule 5101: 1-3-15 of the Administrative Code are not required to complete a reapplication.

(3) Six months for refugee cash assistance groups.

(4) Four, five, six or twelve months for DFA or OWF assistance groups who are:

(a) Expecting a change that would make them ineligible to receive cash assistance;

(b) Migrant farm workers; or

(c) Homeless.

(5) Twenty-four months for child only assistance groups receiving OWF.

(6) The inability to complete the reapplication within the prescribed length of time shall not interfere with the prompt payment of benefits or be the basis for termination unless the assistance group fails to cooperate with the reapplication.

(C) What is the responsibility of the county agency in the reapplication process?

(1) The county agency is responsible for:

(a) Conducting an interview;

(b) Informing the assistance group of its required involvement and cooperation in the reapplication process;

(c) Providing assistance in securing verifications and completing the voter registration forms if requested;

(d) Providing an interpreter at no charge to assistance groups with limited English proficiency;

(e) Obtaining verification of information, which is new, has changed or is subject to change;

(f) Reviewing basic eligibility factors and explaining rights and reporting responsibilities;

(g) Gathering medical documentation and referring the case to the disability determination unit if a member of an assistance group has, appears to have, or alleges to have a physical or mental condition which may limit their ability to work pursuant to rules 5101: 1-39-03 and 5101: 1-5-20 of the Administrative Code;

(h) Completing the reapplication in a timely manner;

(i) Updating all files upon completion of the reapplication process.

(j) Complying with rule 5101: 9-2-02 of the Administrative Code and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) plan adopted by the county agency in accordance with rule 5101: 9-2-02 of the Administrative Code. This includes, but is not limited to, providing the assistance group with an explanation of their rights under the ADA and offering additional screening to any work eligible individual that discloses, has, or appears to have a physical or mental condition that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

(D) How is a reapplication completed?

(1) The county agency shall conduct a reapplication with a member of the assistance group or its authorized representative through:

(a) Telephone interview; or

(b) Face-to-face interview.

(2) Telephone interview

(a) A telephone interview may be conducted instead of a face-to-face interview.

(b) The county agency does not need to determine whether a hardship exists.

(c) The telephone interview notice shall be mailed in advance with the date, time and telephone number that the county agency worker will use to contact the assistance group.

(d) The county agency worker will gather the same information and verifications and take the same actions during the telephone interview as during a face-to-face interview.

(e) Once completed, the county agency worker shall provide the assistance group the following documents:

(i) JFS 07501 "Program Enrollment and Benefit Information" (rev. 7/2014);

(ii) JFS 07204 "Request to Reapply for Cash and Food Assistance" (rev. 1/2013); and

(iii) JFS 07217 "Voter Registration Notice of Rights and Declination" (08/2009) or the CRIS-E generated equivalent.

(f) For client registry information system enhanced (CRIS-E) purposes, the signature date is the date that the county agency receives the signed JFS 07204.

(g) To expedite the reapplication process, the county agency may send the documents identified in paragraph (D)(2)(e) of this rule with the interview appointment letter.

(h) The reapplication is not considered complete until all of the required documents are returned by the assistance group excluding the JFS 07501 and the JFS 07217 which are not required to be returned. This includes all of the documents listed on the JFS 07105.

(3) Face-to-face interview

(a) The county agency shall conduct a face-to-face interview if:

(i) The assistance group or authorized representative requests a face-to-face interview;

(ii) The assistance group or authorized representative does not have a telephone; or

(iii) The county agency worker determines that it is appropriate in order to resolve eligibility determination issues for the assistance group.

(b) If the reapplication interview is conducted as a face-to-face interview, the provisions set forth in paragraphs (D)(2)(e) and (D)(2)(h) of this rule are applicable, with the exception of the completion of the JFS 07204.

(c) If the reapplication interview is conducted as a face-to-face interview at the county agency, the recipient shall be given the opportunity to review and sign the CRIS-E generated printed copy of the information (PCI).

(4) Availability of CRIS-E

(a) If CRIS-E is down or unavailable for an extended period of time, the JFS 01846, "Case Worksheet: Cash, Food Stamps and Medical Assistance Interview" (rev. 05/2005) shall be used.

(b) The JFS 01846 is completed by the worker and the recipient shall be given the opportunity to review and sign the JFS 01846. The information on the JFS 01846 is then entered into CRIS-E at a later date.

(E) What is considered a failure to cooperate in the reapplication process?

Failure to cooperate in the reapplication process and the verification requirements shall result in a termination of OWF, DFA or RCA. Failure occurs:

(1) When the information/verification is not provided after the county agency properly advised what information/verification is needed to determine eligibility provided no request for assistance in obtaining information/verification is received by the county agency; or

(2) When the county agency is not given necessary information to assist in obtaining the verification needed to determine eligibility; or

(3) When the assistance group fails to participate in a scheduled reapplication interview.

(F) Reinstatement of benefits

(1) County agencies can reinstate benefits for assistance groups that have terminated for failure to provide required verifications or take a required action.

(2) The county agency shall reopen an assistance group that has been proposed for termination without requiring a new application when the required verifications are provided or actions are taken within thirty days of the benefit termination date.

(3) The county agency shall prorate the assistance group's benefits beginning the day the verifications were received or the action was taken.

(4) The assistance group has the option to refuse the pro-rated benefit.

Effective: 10/01/2014
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 07/14/2014 and 10/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.03 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5107.16 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 8/1/75, 10/1/75, 12/31/77, 9/1/82, 9/24/83, 8/1/84, 10/20/84, 11/1/84, 12/1/84 (Emer.), 2/10/85, 8/1/86 (Emer.), 10/3/86, 10/1/87 /(Emer.), 12/24/87, 4/1/88 (Emer.(, 6/30/88, 7/1/88 (Emer.), 9/1/88, 9/24/88, 10/1/88 (Emer.), 12/20/88, 12/1/89, 4/1/91 (Emer.), 6/1/91, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/1/91, 4/1/92, 7/1/92, 1/1/93, 5/1/93, 3/1/94 (Emer.), 4/18/94, 1/1/95, 7/1/95, 5/1/97, 10/1/97 (Emer.), 10/30/97, 7/1/98, 10/1/99, 5/4/00, 5/2/05, 7/1/08, 5/1/09, 1/1/10, 4/1/10, 7/1/11

5101:1-2-15 Voter registration requirement.

(A) What is the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) of 1993? (1) The NVRA ( Public Law 103-31 ) establishes procedures to increase the number of eligible citizens who register to vote in elections for federal office.

(2) The NVRA requires each state to provide voter registration services at designated government agencies that provide public assistance. In Ohio, the designated agencies include the county departments of job and family services (CDJFS).

(B) What is the role of the CDJFS? The CDJFS shall do the following:

(1) In accordance with Public Law 103-31 and section 329.051 of the Revised Code, make voter registration applications available, as set forth in paragraph (B)(2) of this rule, to individuals applying for or in receipt of the following programs:

(a) Ohio works first;

(b) Disability financial assistance;

(c) Prevention, retention and contingency;

(d) Medical assistance; and (e) Food assistance.

(2) Provide the following forms with every application, reapplication or change of address:

(a) The JFS 07200-VR "Voter Registration Form" (07/2008) or the national mail voter registration application. The voter registration form shall be attached to all applications, and reapplication and change of address materials.

(b) The JFS 07217 "Voter Registration Notice of Rights and Declination"

(08/2009), the county-created equivalent form or the CRIS-E generated equivalent. If the CDJFS creates its own form, the questions and statements set forth in 42 U.S.C. 20, section 1973gg-5 (05/93) and section 3503.10 of the Revised Code must be on the form.

(i) Individuals who wish to register should check the "yes" box and individuals who do not wish to register should check the "no" box. Failure to check either box will be deemed a decision not to register to vote at that time.

(ii) The secretary of state does not require the submission of the notice of rights and declination form.

(iii) If an individual checks "no" on the notice of rights and declination form, but completes the voter registration form, the CDJFS shall send the form to the local county board of elections.

(iv) Information relating to a declination to register to vote in connection with an application made at the CDJFS may not be used for any purpose other than voter registration.

(3) Assist the individual in completing the voter registration forms, unless the individual refuses such assistance. Each individual shall be provided the same degree of assistance with completion of the voter registration form as is provided with the completion of any public assistance application form.

(4) Accept the completed voter registration form (regardless of whether the form was distributed by the CDJFS) for transmittal to the appropriate local county board of elections. Completed voter registration forms may be returned to the CDJFS in person or through another person. When voter registration forms are accepted, they shall be date stamped using a date stamp that will not disclose the identity of the CDJFS or if no such date stamp is available, the date may be written on the voter registration form.

(5) Transmit completed voter registration forms no later than five business days after the date of receipt by the CDJFS. The JFS 07218 "Voter Registration Transmittal" (08/2009) shall be used for this purpose.

(6) Maintain confidentiality in voter registration procedures. The identity of the CDJFS from which voter registration forms are received shall remain confidential except as required by the secretary of state for record-keeping purposes.

(7) Establish an internal procedure for collection of all voter registration forms. The internal procedure shall include the selection of a designated individual within the agency to serve as coordinator for all activities related to the voter registration program. The requirements of the coordinator are listed in paragraph (C) of this rule.

(C) What is the role of the CDJFS voter registration coordinator? The voter registration coordinator is responsible for administering all aspects of the voter registration program within the CDJFS and has the following specific responsibilities.

(1) Collect all voter registration forms.

(2) Transmit voter registration forms to the local county board of elections.

(3) Train all CDJFS employees who provide assistance in processing applications, reapplications, and changes of address with respect to the voter registration requirements:

(a) New CDJFS staff who have NVRA-related responsibilities shall receive training within the first month of their employment or before their first public contact, whichever occurs first;

(b) Current CDJFS employees shall receive training at least annually.

(c) Records of staff training shall be maintained by the CDJFS and provided to ODJFS upon request.

(4) Maintain an adequate supply of the applications and forms identified in paragraphs (B)(2)(a) and (B)(2)(b) of this rule.

(5) Monitor voter registration activities.

(6) Resolve questions and problems that arise, in coordination with state or county election officials.

(7) Administer all aspects of the voter registration program for the CDJFS as prescribed by the secretary of state.

(8) The coordinator shall receive no additional compensation for performing such duties.

Replaces:

5101:1-2-15

Effective: 01/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 329.051
Rule Amplifies: 3503.10 , 5101.54 , 5107.05 , 5108.01 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/98, 11/1/02, 7/1/05, 7/1/07

5101:1-2-20 Ohio works first, disability financial assistance, and refugee cash assistance: verification and reporting requirements.

(A) What is verification?

(1) "Verification" is a document or statement from a third party or collateral contact which confirms statements made by the assistance group regarding need and/or a specific eligibility factor.

(2) Verification establishes that the factors of eligibility are met and the assistance group is eligible to receive benefits under the program. Verification is not an eligibility requirement in its own right, but a method for assuring that an eligibility requirement is met.

(3) A telephone contact may be made by the county agency to secure verification.Written consent from the assistance group is necessary unless an exception set forth in rule 5101:1-1-03 of the Administrative Code is met. The following information must be included:

(a) The name and telephone number of the person who gave the information:

(b) The name of the agency or business contacted, if appropriate:

(c) The date of the contact: and

(d) An accurate summary of the information.

(B) What is required to be verified?

(1) All eligibility factors required to establish initial and continuing eligibility and items subject to change must be verified at the time of application, reapplication and when a change in circumstances occurs in the assistance group. A change in circumstances includes the discovery of a discrepancy in income and a change in income amounts.

(2) All income of a member of the assistance group and any person whose income affects the assistance group must be verified.

(C) What happens if verifications are not received?

(1) It is the assistance group's responsibility to provide the information necessary to establish eligibility.

(2) When the assistance group is aware of the requirements of verification but refuses to provide both consent and necessary verification, the county agency shall deny or terminate assistance as eligibility cannot be established.

(3) Assistance may not be terminated when the assistance group refuses to cooperate in validating past eligibility because past eligibility has no bearing upon present need and eligibility.

(4) The assistance group may not be compelled to cooperate in giving testimony or records which may prove guilt of a crime because of protections of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

(D) When is verification not required?

(1) When the assistance group's own statement on the application establishes that the assistance group is ineligible for cash assistance, verification is not required. The county agency shall confirm the statement on the application to assure it was an accurate statement and not a mistake in completing the form.

(2) Verification of earned or unearned income is not necessary when the assistance group either alleges no income or employment in the current period and there is no reason to question the statement, or the assistance group reports earnings sufficiently high to make them clearly ineligible for benefits.

(3) Verification is not required if some other factor of eligibility, such as age or citizenship, is clearly not met.

(E) What are the county agency's responsibilities?

The county agency shall:

(1) Explain what verifications and information are necessary to establish eligibility for cash assistance programs. Explain where and how to obtain the required verifications.

(2) Assist in securing all the required verifications necessary to establish eligibility when the assistance group requests such assistance because of an inability to provide them without the agency's help.

(3) Obtain the verifications if the assistance group is not financially able or is not competent to secure them. This shall not be interpreted as noncooperation. nor shall it be used to deny assistance.

(4) The JFS 07341 "Applicant/Recipient Authorization For Release of Information"(rev. 4/2004) shall be obtained each time verification of an eligibility factor is required.

(a) Verification of information from public records does not require written consent.

(b) Verification need be obtained only once if the eligibility factor is not subject to change.

(F) How is verification handled between reapplications?

(1) The county agency shall pursue clarification and verification of the assistance group's circumstances by issuing the JFS 04219 "Request for Contact" (rev. 02/2004) or the CRIS-E generated equivalent, which clearly advises the assistance group of the verification it must provide or the actions it must take to clarify its circumstances.

(a) The JFS 04219 or the CRIS-E generated equivalent shall afford the assistance group at least ten days to respond and to clarify its circumstances, either by telephone or by correspondence, as the county agency directs. It shall further state the consequences if the assistance group fails to respond to the county agency.

(b) If the assistance group does not respond to the county agency, or does respond but refuses to provide sufficient information to clarify its circumstances, the county agency shall terminate the cash assistance case.

(c) If the assistance group responds to the county agency and provides sufficient information, the county agency shall act on the new circumstances and adjust the budget accordingly.

(G) What happens if verification is not available or there is a discrepancy?

(1) If verification is not available through no fault of the assistance group, the determination is based on the best possible evidence.

(2) Where information from another source contradicts statements made by the assistance group, the assistance group shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to resolve the discrepancy prior to an eligibility determination.

(3) In situations in which there is no available verification, the county agency shall not deny or terminate the case but shall accept a signed affidavit, a third-party statement, notarized statement, or the statement on the application as verification if the information is consistent with other facts and statements.

(4) If the statement provided is incomplete and/or inconsistent and the assistance group is unable to clarify the statement, the county agency shall deny or terminate the case as eligibility cannot be established.

(5) The county agency must exhaust all possibilities for verification before accepting these statements. The use of a statement shall be on a case-by-case basis. This approach shall not be used for the sole purpose of meeting the promptness requirement of rule 5101:1-2-01 of the Administrative Code.

(6) Homeless and migrant assistance groups may not have easy access to required verifications that may exist. In order to ensure that these assistance groups do not experience a lengthy delay in receiving cash assistance benefits, the following procedures shall be followed:

(a) Once the homeless or migrant assistance group has submitted verification of identity, the county agency shall approve the application for assistance if the assistance group appears to meet eligibility criteria based on statements on the application or a signed affidavit, and the best evidence available.

(b) The county agency shall attempt to obtain verification of all other eligibility factors by the next reapplication. If the verifications cannot be obtained by the next reapplication. the county agency shall continue the attempt and document in the case record.

(7) The methods used for verification shall be thoroughly documented in the case record. All documents submitted to the county agency shall be photocopied and retained in the case record.

(H) What are the change reporting requirements and the time frames?

(1) The following changes must be reported within ten calendar days of the date that the change occurs for Ohio works first (OWF) disability financial assistance (DFA) and refugee cash assistance (RCA) assistance groups:

(a) Change in the source of earned and unearned income. This includes new employment, loss of employment, changing of jobs and initial receipt of unearned income:

(b) Change in the amount of gross monthly income of more than fifty dollars:

(c) Changes in the legal obligation to pay child support:

(d) Change in the assistance group composition:

(e) An assistance group member becomes pregnant, or a pregnancy ends when there are no other children:

(f) Change in residence:

(g) Withdrawal from school for individuals subject to the learning, earning and parenting program requirements:

(h) Change in address, job or other information related to an absent parent:

(i) Change in living arrangement for a minor parent;

(j) An assistance group member violates a condition of his probation or parole or becomes a fugitive felon.

(2) The following changes must be reported within ten calendar days of the date that the change occurs for DFA assistance groups:

(a) Change in the amount of resources if the total for the family group equals or exceeds one-thousand dollars;

(b) Receipt of non-recurring lump-sum payment.

(3) The county agency shall use the time frame provisions set forth in paragraph (N) of rule 5101:1-2-01 of the Administrative Code when calculating the ten day reporting time period.

(I) Interim reporting

OWF and DFA assistance groups subject to the twelve or twenty-four month reapplication as set forth in rule 5101:1-2-10 of the Administrative Code, shall be required to submit an interim report to the county agency. The interim report will provide the county agency with updated information on the assistance group's circumstances.

(1) For assistance groups subject to the twelve-month reapplication and in receipt of food assistance benefits, the following policy is applicable;

(a) An interim report shall be sent to the assistance group during the fifth month through the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E).

(b) The county agency shall propose termination for an assistance group who fails to return the interim report by the twenty-first day of the fifth month.

(c) The county agency shall reopen an assistance group that has been proposed for termination, without requiring a new application when the assistance group returns the interim report during the sixth month.

(2) For assistance groups subject to the twenty-four month reapplication and in receipt of food assistance benefits, the following policy is applicable:

(a) An interim report shall be sent to the assistance group during the eleventh month through the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E).

(b) The county agency shall propose termination for an assistance group who fails to return the interim report by the twenty-first day of the eleventh month.

(c) The county agency shall reopen an assistance group that has been proposed for termination, without requiring a new application when the assistance group returns the interim report during the twelfth month.

(3) The county agency shall reopen an assistance group that has been terminated, without a new application when the assistance group returns the interim report within thirty days of the closure date. The county agency shall prorate the assistance group's benefits beginning the day the report was returned. The assistance group has the option to refuse the pro-rated benefit.

Replaces: 5101:1-2-20

Effective: 04/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 04/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 10/1/75, 9/1/82, 8/1/86 (Emer.), 10/3/86, 10/1/87
(Emer.), 12/24/87, 4/1/88 (Emer.), 6/30/88, 10/1/88 (Emer.), 12/20/88, 3/1/89 (Emer.), 5/28/89, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 5/1/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/00, 7/1/01, 11/1/02, 12/1/06

5101:1-2-30 Citizenship and alien status: Ohio works first and disability financial assistance.

(A) This rule sets forth the eligibility standard used to determine citizenship and alien status of individuals applying for or receiving Ohio works first (OWF) and disability financial assistance (DFA) benefits. To receive program benefits an individual must be one of the following:

(1) A United States (U.S.) citizen or non-citizen national:

The "United States" is defined as the fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and the American Virgin Islands. In addition, non-citizen nationals from American Samoa or Swain's Island are considered U.S. citizens for purposes of the OWF and DFA programs.

(2) Qualified alien:

(a) An alien who at the time of application or at the time of receipt of OWF or DFA is:

(i) An alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (1952);

(ii) An alien granted asylum under the INA;

(iii) A refugee who is admitted to the U.S. under section 207 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1157 (05/2005);

(iv) An Afghan or Iraqi alien admitted to the U.S. who was granted a special immigrant visa (SIV) under section 101(a)(27) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1101 (12/2008);

(v) An alien paroled into the U.S. under section 212 of the INA for a period of at least one year;

(vi) An alien whose deportation is being withheld under section 243 of the INA;

(vii) An alien granted conditional entry pursuant to section 203 of the INA as in effect prior to April 1, 1980;

(viii) An alien who is a Cuban or Haitian entrant pursuant to 45 CFR 401(1982) ;

(ix) An Amerasian admitted pursuant to section 584 of Public Law (P.L.) 100-200 (12/1987), as amended by P.L. 100-461 (10/1988);

(x) An alien or an alien's child battered or subjected to extreme cruelty in the U.S. by a spouse or a parent or by a member of the spouse's or parent's family. This shall not apply to an alien during any period which the individual responsible for the abuse is residing in the same residence. Verification and documentation procedures for this status are defined in exhibit B of attachment 5 of the U.S. department of justice interim guidance dated November 17, 1997 (62 FR 61344); and

(xi) A victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons certified under the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, Pub. L. No. 106-386, 114 Stat. 1464 (2000).

(a) A family member of a victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons who holds a visa, for family members authorized by the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2003, Pub. L. 108-193, 117 Stat. 2875 (2003).

(b) An alien child pursuant to the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, 22 U.S.C. 7105 .

(b) Residents of the U.S. prior to August 22, 1996:

A qualified alien who entered the U.S. prior to August 22, 1996 and continuously resided in the U.S. until attaining qualified alien status shall continue to meet the citizenship requirements for OWF and DFA.

(c) Residents of the U.S. on or after August 22, 1996:

A qualified alien who enters the U.S. on or after August 22, 1996 does not meet the citizenship requirement for OWF and DFA with the following exceptions:

(i) Refugee's as set forth in paragraph (A)(2)(a)(iii) of this rule, eligibility is limited to five years from the date of entry into the U.S.;

(ii) Victims of severe forms of trafficking who are potentially eligible for benefits and services to the same extent as an alien admitted to the U.S. as a refugee in accordance with rules 5101:1-2-30.1 and 5101:1-2-30.3 of the Administrative Code;

(iii) Indefinite detainees or lifers after being convicted of a crime that triggers a final order of removal, may have a status making them potentially eligible in accordance with rule 5101:1-2-30.2 of the Administrative Code;

(iv) An alien granted asylum under the INA. Eligibility is limited to five years from the date asylum was granted;

(v) An Afghan or Iraqi alien admitted to the U.S. who was granted a special immigrant visa (SIV) under section 101(a)(27) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1101 (12/2008). Eligibility is limited to five years from the date of entry into the U.S.;

(vi) An alien whose deportation is being withheld under section 243 of the INA. Eligibility is limited to five years from the date of entry into the U.S.;

(vii) An alien who is a Cuban or Haitian entrant pursuant to 45 CFR. 401 (1982). Eligibility is limited to five years from the date the status as a Cuban or Haitian entrant is granted;

(viii) An Amerasian admitted pursuant to section 584 of Public Law (P.L.) 100-202 (12/1987), as amended by P.L. 100-461 (10/1988). Eligibility is limited to five years from the date the individual was admitted into the U.S. as an Amerasian immigrant;

(ix) Aliens lawfully admitted into the U.S. for permanent residence under the INA and have worked forty qualifying quarters of coverage under Title II of the Social Security Act or can be credited with quarters that are creditable for any period beginning after December 31,1996 and did not receive any federal means-tested public benefit during any quarter.

(a) Qualifying quarter shall be credited as follows:

(i) All quarters of coverage worked by a natural or adoptive parent if the quarters were worked before the date the alien attains age eighteen; and

(ii) All quarters worked by a spouse of such alien during their marriage if the alien remains married to such spouse or such spouse is deceased.

(iii) A qualifying quarter does not include any quarter after December 31, 1996, in which the individual worked and also received a federal means-tested public benefit.

(x) Veterans and active duty service personnel lawfully residing in Ohio and are:

(a) A veteran with an honorable discharge and not on account of alienage; or

(b)On active duty (other than active duty for training) in the U.S. armed forces as defined in section 5303A(d) of Title 38, United States Code (U.S.C.)(2007).

(c) The surviving spouse of a deceased veteran or individual on active duty, provided the spouse has not remarried and the marriage fulfills the requirements of 38 U.S.C. 1304(2004) or the unmarried dependent child(ren) of an individual as defined in paragraph (A)(2)(x) of this rule.

(d) Filipino war veterans who fought in World War II as described in 38 U.S.C. 107(2004) .

(B) Eligibility categories: each category of eligible alien status stands alone for purposes of determining eligibility. Subsequent adjustment to a more limited status does not override eligibility based on an earlier less rigorous status. Likewise, if eligibility expires under one eligibility status, the county agency must determine if eligibility exists under another status.

(C) Timeframe for verification submission: the county agency must provide alien applicants with a reasonable opportunity to submit acceptable documentation of their eligible alien status. A reasonable opportunity must be at least ten days from the date of the county agency's request for an acceptable document.

(D) Validity of documents:

(1) The county agency shall verify the authenticity of the documentation of eligible alien status of applicant aliens. If an alien does not wish the county agency to contact the department of homeland security to verify his or her immigration status, the county agency must give the assistance group the option of withdrawing its application or participating without that assistance group member. The U.S. department of justice interim guidance dated November 17, 1997 (62 FR 61344) contains information on acceptable documents and INS codes.

(2) The county agency shall verify the validity of the documents presented by applicant aliens through the systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) program. In some instances validity of documents shall be verified by submitting the department of homeland security, "Document Verification Request" form G845S (07/08) to the appropriate office, along with the proper documentation. SAVE procedures are set forth in rule 5101:1-1-50 of the Administrative Code.

Replaces: 5101:1-2-30

Effective: 06/01/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 06/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 8/1/75, 12/28/79, 1/1/81, 6/1/82, 7/1/88 (Emer.), 9/25/88, 7/1/95, 10/31/95, 10/1/96 (Emer.), 12/15/96, 5/1/98 (Emer.), 7/1/98, 1/1/99, 8/1/01, 3/2/02, 11/1/02, 11/1/06, 10/1/08, 8/1/10

5101:1-2-30.1 Benefit eligibility: victims of trafficking.

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, Pub. L. No. 106-386, division A, 114 Stat. 1464 (2000) makes victims of severe forms of trafficking eligible for benefits and services to the same extent as an alien who is admitted to the United States as a refugee under section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (1997).

(A) What is the definition of "severe forms of trafficking in persons?"

Under section 103(8) of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, the term "severe forms of trafficking in persons" means:

(1) Sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained eighteen years of age; or

(2) The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.

(B) Who determines if an individual is a victim of severe forms of trafficking?

The office of refugee resettlement (ORR) within the department of health and human services will make certification determinations for victims of severe forms of trafficking.

(1) For adults, ORR will issue notarized letters of certification for adult victims of severe forms of trafficking.

(2) For children, ORR will issue notarized letters, similar to adult certification letters, stating that the child is a victim of a severe form of trafficking.

(C) What are the county agency responsibilities in determining eligiblity for victims of severe forms of trafficking?

(1) The county agency shall:

(a) Accept the letters described in paragraph (B) of this rule in place of the citizenship and immigration service documentation and retain a copy in the case file.

(b) Call ORR for assistance if an individual presents an expired letter when applying for benefits or when a redetermination is being completed and the county agency finds that a certification letter has expired.

(c) Call the trafficking verification telephone line to confirm the validity of the certification letter before providing benefits. During the verification telephone call, notify ORR of the benefits for which the victim of trafficking has applied.

(d) Note the individual's entry date for refugee benefit purposes once the letter described in paragraph (B) of this rule is received and the validity of the document is verified by calling the trafficking verification telephone line. The entry date is the date of certification.

(e) Determine eligibility or redetermine eligibility in accordance with the appropriate program rules.

(f) Issue benefits and services to the same extent as a refugee, if the applicant meets other program eligibility criteria (e.g., income levels).

(2) The county agency shall not:

(a) Require victims of severe forms of trafficking to provide any other immigration documents to receive benefits.

(b) Contact the systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) to confirm eligiblity for benefits. The SAVE system does not contain information about victims of severe form of trafficking.

(c) Automatically deny benefits if the individual is unable to provide verification of identity. The county agency shall call the trafficking verification telephone line for assistance.

(d) Delay, deny, or discontinue assistance to any eligible applicant because he or she does not have a social security number. If an individual is required to provide or apply for a social security number for another benefit program, such as medicaid, Ohio works first, or food assistance; or the victim of severe forms of trafficking does not yet have or is unable to obtain a social security number for work purposes, the individual shall:

(i) Complete the SS-5, "Social Security Administration Application for a Social Security Card" form;

(ii) Provide all department of homeland security documents;

(iii) Provide a passport; and

(iv) Provide a state identification card or driver's license.

(D) What if an individiual does not have certification from ORR?

The county agency shall contact ORR if it encounters:

(1) An individual or a child that is believed to meet the definition of a victim of a severe form of trafficking, but the individual has no certification; or

(2) A child believed to have been subjected to a severe form of trafficking who lacks an eligibility letter.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 30.1

Effective: 05/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 05/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 3/1/02, 11/1/02, 7/1/05, 9/1/08

5101:1-2-30.2 Benefit eligibility: indefinite detainees or lifers.

(A) Are indefinite detainees eligible for benefits?

Some indefinite detainees released from detention may have a status as refugees or may receive a status that makes them potentially eligible for refugee cash assistance or Ohio works first.

(B) Who are indefinite detainees or lifers?

Indefinite detainees or lifers are non-citizens who, after having served time for a criminal conviction and are given a final order of removal by the department of homeland security (DHS) United States citizenship and immigration services (USCIS), remain indefinitely in the United States (U.S.) because their home country and no other country will accept them. On June 28, 2001 the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision that limits an alien's detention to a period reasonably necessary to bring about the alien's removal from the U.S. and does not permit indefinite detention.

(C) What must an indefinite detainee or lifer provide when applying for benefits?

(1) An "Order of Supervision" (USCIS I-220B). The order of supervison should include the individual's alien registration number and notation concerning exclusion, deportation or removal. The order shall specify the conditions of supervision including but not limited to a requirement that the alien:

(a) Report to a specified officer periodically and provide information under oath as directed;

(b) Continue efforts to obtain a travel document and assist in obtaining a travel document;

(c) Report as directed for a mental or physical examination or examinations as directed;

(d) Obtain advance approval of travel beyond previously specified times and distances; and

(e) Provide a written notice of any change of address on form AR-11 "Alien's Change of Address Card" within ten days of the change.

(2) An officer authorized to issue an order of suspension may require the posting of a bond in an amount determined by the officer to ensure compliance with the conditions of the order, including surrender for removal.

(3) Employment authorization. An officer authorized to issue an order may, in his or her discretion, grant employment authorization. The individual may also have an "Employment Authorization Document" (USCIS from I-766).

(D) What are the responsibilities of the county agency?

The county agency shall:

(1) Collect as much of the following information from the applicant as possible;

(a) Name;

(b) Alien registration number ("A number");

(c) Date of birth;

(d) Social security number;

(e) Home country;

(f) Number on the I-94 "Arrival-Departure Record";

(g) Parent's name;

(h) Driver's license number; and

(i) Copies of any immigration documents.

(2) Call the office of refugee resettlement (ORR) at (202) 401-9246 to inform them about the need for an eligibility determination for an indefinite detainee.

(3) Send a fax with the collected information from the applicant and contact information for the eligibility determiner handling the case at the county agency to the ORR at (202) 401-5487. The ORR will work with the USCIS to determine the applicant's original status, entry date and eligibility.

(4) After information has been received by the county agency, the ORR may contact the county agency for additional information. The ORR will notify the county agency of the applicant's status, entry date and eligibility.

(5) Based upon the information received from ORR, the county agency shall determine eligibility of the indefinite detainee or lifer for refugee cash assistance or Ohio works first benefits in accordance with rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 30.2

Effective: 09/09/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 09/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 11/1/02, 11/1/06

5101:1-2-30.3 Benefit eligibility: family members of victims of trafficking.

In accordance with the Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2003, Pub. L. No. 108-193, 117 Stat. 2877 (2003) certain family members of victims of severe forms of trafficking are eligible for benefits and services to the same extent as refugees.

(A) Who is considered a family member of victims of trafficking?

A holder of a T-2, T-3, T-4 or T-5 visa (hereafter, "derivative T visa") is considered a family member of a victim of severe forms of trafficking.

(B) What are the county agency responsiblities in determining eligibility for family members of victims of severe forms of trafficking?

The county agency shall:

(1) Accept the derivative T visa of a non-immigrant (i.e., an alien who is allowed to enter the United States (U.S.) for a specific purpose and for a limited period of time).

(a) For an individual who is already present in the U.S. on the date the derivative T visa is issued, the date of entry for benefits and services is the notice date on the I-797 form, "Notice of Action" on the individual's derivative T visa.

(b) For an individual who enters the U.S. on the basis of a derivative T visa, the date of entry for benefits and services is the date of entry stamped on that individual's passport or I-94 arrival record.

(2) Call the trafficking verification telephone line to notify the office of refugee resettlement of the benefits for which the individual has applied.

The health and human services systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) system does not contain information about non-immigrant alien family members. The county agency shall not contact the SAVE system to confirm eligibility for benefits.

(3) Determine eligiblity or redetermine eligiblity in accordance with the appropriate program rules.

(4) If the applicant meets other program eligiblity criteria (e.g. income levels), the county agency shall issue benefits and services to the same extent as a refugee.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 30.3

Effective: 05/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 05/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/05, 9/1/08

5101:1-2-35 Sponsor-to-alien deeming requirements: Ohio works first and disability financial assistance.

(A) What is the sponsor-to-alien deeming requirement?

In the determination of eligibility for cash assistance benefits, the county agency is required to deem a sponsor's income and resources to the alien. The I-864, "Affidavit of Support" has been developed for the determination of the sponsor-deeming directive.

(B) Who is considered a sponsor?

(1) A sponsor is anyone who executes the I-864 "Affidavit of Support" on behalf of an alien as a condition of the alien's entry into the United States (U.S.).

(2) Pursuant to section 213A of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (1954), the I-864 is completed when the income and or resources of the sponsor and any other household member are used to qualify an alien for sponsorship.

(C) Who is not subject to the sponsor-to-alien deeming requirements?

An assistance group that consists of:

(1) An alien who is a minor child if the sponsor of the alien or any spouse of the sponsor is a parent of the alien;

(2) An alien admitted to the U.S. as a refugee;

(3) An alien paroled into the U.S. for a period of at least one year;

(4) An alien granted political asylum by the attorney general of the U.S.;

(5) A lawful permanent resident who applied for an immigrant visa at a consular's office or adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident before December 19, 1997;

(6) A qualified alien who is sponsored by an organization or who is not a lawful permanent resident and who is not required to have a sponsor;

(7) A victim of a severe form of trafficking, as defined in rule 5101:1-2-30 of the Administrative Code;

(8) Certain family members of a victim of a severe form of trafficking in accordance with rule 5101:1-2-30.3 of the Administrative Code;

(9) A lawful permanent resident entering employment or other non-family categories, such as the diversity category (i.e., lottery immigrants) where a person did not have to sign the I-864 affidavit. Persons from countries with low rates of immigration are allowed into the U.S. through a lottery system;

(10) An alien or alien's child who has been determined to be a victim of domestic violence or extreme cruelty is exempt for a period of twelve months:

(a) A county agency may use any credible evidence of abuse that is available to make a determination. This would include, but is not limited to reports or affidavits from police, judges, other court officials, medical personnel, school officials, clergy, social workers, other social service agency personnel, protection orders, affidavits from family members or others who have a personal knowledge of the battery or extreme cruelty, photographs of injuries, and the applicant's own credible affidavit.

(b) The deeming exemption may not apply to the alien's benefits during any period in which the individual responsible for such battery or cruelty resides in the same household or family eligible unit as the individual who was subjected to such battery or cruelty.

(c) The exemption can be extended beyond twelve months if the abuse or cruelty is recognized by a court order, an administrative law judge or the United States citizenship and immigration services (USCIS), and the victim does not live with the batterer. However, the county agency must notify the Ohio department of job and family services, office of families and children, of each such determination so information may be forwarded to the USCIS. The name of the sponsor(s) and the sponsored lawful permanent resident(s) involved should be provided;

(11) An alien child of a battered parent, pursuant to rule 5101:1-2-30 of the Administrative Code;

(12) An indigent alien who has been determined by the county agency to be unable to obtain food and shelter taking into account the alien's own income plus any cash, food, housing, or other assistance provided by other individuals, including the sponsor. In this instance, only the amount of income and resources actually provided by the sponsor or sponsor's spouse should be considered. The exemption is granted for a twelve-month period beginning on the date the determination is made;

(13) An alien whose sponsor signed an affidavit(s) of support other than the I-864 affidavit of support; and

(14) Cuban and Haitian entrants.

(D) How is the sponsor-to-alien deeming requirement applied?

(1) The sponsor and sponsor's spouse do not have to reside in the household of the sponsored alien or any member of the alien's assistance group for the deeming provision to apply.

(2) An alien whose sponsor signed an I-864 affidavit on or after December 12, 1997 and applies for OWF or DFA benefits, is subject to the deeming requirement upon the expiration of the five-year ban on receipt of OWF or DFA benefits in accordance with rule 5101:1-2-30 of the Administrative Code.

(3) The income of the sponsor and the sponsor's spouse shall be deemed in accordance with the income allocation methodology pursuant to rule 5101:1-23-20 of the Administrative Code.

(4) Resources of the sponsor and the sponsor's spouse shall be deemed pursuant to rule 5101:1-5-30 of the Administrative Code.

(5) Deemed income shall be considered unearned income, and unearned income and resources must be equally divided and budgeted among the sponsored aliens. This deeming applies until the alien meets one of the requirements outlined in paragraph (D)(1) of this rule.

(6) If an alien has two sponsors, both of whom executed an I-864 and an I-864A, "Contract Between Sponsor and Household Member" affidavit, the income and resources of both the primary and joint sponsor(s), as well as their respective spouses shall be deemed to the sponsored lawful permanent resident.

(7) An alien sponsored pursuant to an I-864 and an I-864A affidavit shall be required to provide such information and documentation with respect to the alien's sponsor as may be necessary in order to make a determination of eligibility required by this rule, and to obtain any cooperation from the sponsor necessary for any such determination. This includes such information and documentation which the alien or the alien's sponsor provided in support of the alien's immigration application.

(8) When an accepted I-864 and an I-864A affidavit provides that an alien is not excludable as a public charge, the sponsor agrees to financially support the alien so that the alien will not become a public charge. Upon notification that a sponsored alien has received a benefit, the county agency shall request reimbursement by the sponsor for the alien's assistance. A public charge means an alien who has become (for deportation purposes) or who is likely to become (for admission/adjustment purposes) primarily dependent on the government for subsistence.

(E) How long do the deeming requirements apply?

Deeming applies until the alien:

(1) Becomes a U.S. citizen;

(2) Has earned or can be credited with forty qualifying quarters of work as defined in rule 5101:1-2-30 of the Administrative Code; or

(3) Departs the U.S. permanently or dies.

Replaces: 5101:1-2-35

Effective: 09/09/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 09/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.03 , 5107.05 , 5107.76 , 5115.03 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5107.03 , 5107.05 , 5107.76 , 5115.03 , 5115.05 .
Prior Effective Dates: 10/1/81, 12/1/82, 7/1/83, 10/1/84 (Emer.), 12/27/84, 10/1/87 (Emer.), 12/24/84, 4/1/86, 10/1/87, 7/1/88 (Emer.), 9/25/88, 1/1/94, 6/11/95, 10/1/96 (Emer.), 12/15/96, 1/26/98, 7/1/98, 3/1/02, 11/1/06

5101:1-2-40 Refugee resettlement program definitions.

(A) The refugee resettlement program coordinates benefits and services for refugees in Ohio. The program includes refugee cash assistance (RCA), which provides time-limited cash assistance to refugees who are not eligible for Ohio works first (OWF) or supplemental security income (SSI). The program also includes the refugee social services program (RSSP) and targeted assistance program (TAP), which offer services designed to help refugees achieve self-sufficiency through employment.

(B) The following definitions are applicable to the refugee resettlement program rules, rules 5101:1-2-40.1 to 5101:1-2-40.5 of the Administrative Code:

(1) "Assistance group" means the following individuals who live in the same household:

(a) Individual adults;

(b) Married individuals without children; or

(c) Parents, custodial relatives or legal guardians with minor children.

(2) "Employable" means any refugee except a refugee who provides documentation that the refugee is:

(a) Below the age of sixteen;

(b) Over the age of sixty-four;

(c) Under the age of nineteen and a full-time student in a secondary school or in the equivalent level of vocational or technical training;

(d) The sole caregiver for a child under one year of age or other fully dependent person; or

(e) Unable to work for physical or mental health reasons.

(3) "Entry date" is the date the individual entered the U.S. in an eligible status, or the date an eligible status was granted if it was granted in the U.S.

(a) The entry date for an asylee is the date asylum status was granted in the U.S.

(b) The entry date for individuals from Cuba or Haiti is the date documentation of status was issued by the United States citizenship and immigration services (USCIS).

(c) The entry date for an adult victim of a severe form of trafficking is the certification date from the department of health and human services, office of refugee resettlement (ORR).

(d) The entry date for a minor victim of a severe form of trafficking is the eligibility date from the letter issued by the ORR.

(e) The entry date for a child with an interim assistance letter is the eligibility date from the letter issued by the ORR.

(f) The entry date for Iraqi and Afghan individuals holding special immigrant visa status is the date the individual entered the U.S. or the date special immigrant status was granted in the U.S.

(4) "Family self-sufficiency plan" is a plan that addresses the employment-related service needs of the employable members in an RCA assistance group for the purpose of enabling the RCA assistance group to become self-supporting through the employment of one or more assistance group members.

(5) "Individual employability plan" is an individualized written plan for a refugee participating in RSSP or TAP services that sets forth a program of services intended to result in the earliest possible employment of the refugee.

(6) "Mandatory participant" is any employable refugee receiving RCA who resides in a county receiving an RSSP or TAP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16 or 5101:9-6-16.1 of the Administrative Code.

(7) "Matching grant program" is an alternative to public assistance designed to enable refugees to become self-sufficient within four to six months from the entry date. The ORR enters into agreements with resettlement agencies to provide case management, employment services, maintenance assistance and cash allowances to refugees who volunteer to participate in the program. As a condition of participation in the matching grant program, a refugee agrees not to access public cash assistance. The matching grant program begins the thirty first day after the entry date and typically ends three months later.

(8) "Provider" is an organization with established programs of employment services and employability services, as described in rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code, including job referral and job placement with private employers designed to assist refugees in becoming employed.

(9) "Reception and placement grants" are one-time cash grants from the U.S. department of state or department of justice to the resettlement agency on behalf of the refugee. This money is used to provide for the refugee family's immediate needs upon arrival to the U.S. and is not considered as income.

(10) "Refugee" means an individual with original documentation issued by the USCIS or the ORR, of one of the following statuses under the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA):

(a) Paroled as a refugee or asylee under section 212 (d)(5) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182 (05/2007);

(b) Admitted as a refugee under section 207 of the INA, 8 U.S.C 1157 (05/2005);

(c) Granted asylum under section 208 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158 (05/2005);

(d) An alien who is a Cuban or Haitian entrant as defined in 45 C.F.R., part 401 (10/2009);

(e) An Amerasian admitted pursuant to section 584 of Public Law (Pub. L. No.) 100-202 (12/1987), as amended by Pub. L. No. 100-461 (10/1988);

(f) A victim of a severe form of human trafficking, as defined in the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, 114 Stat. 1464, 22 U.S.C. 7102 , who has a letter documenting eligibility as such from the ORR;

(g) A family member of a victim of a severe form of human trafficking, as defined by the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2003, Pub. L. No. 108-193;

(h) An alien child issued an interim assistance letter from the ORR pursuant to the William Wilberforce Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, 22 U.S.C. 7105 ;

(i) An Afghan or Iraqi alien admitted in accordance with Pub. L. No 110-161 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008 and Pub. L. No 110-181 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008, who was granted a special immigrant visa under section 101(a)(27) of the INA; or

(j) A lawful permanent resident, provided the individual previously held one of the statuses identified in paragraphs (B)(10)(a) to (B)(10)(i) of this rule. The beginning date for eligibility for benefits is based on the entry date in the previous status.

(11) "Resettlement agency" is a local affiliate or subcontractor of a national voluntary agency that has entered into a grant, contract, or cooperative agreement with the United States department of state or other appropriate federal agency to provide for the reception and initial placement of refugees in the U.S.

(12) "Sponsor" means an individual, church, civic organization, state or local government, or other group or organization which has agreed to help in the reception and initial placement of refugees in the U.S. and other public and private non-profit agencies.

(13) "Voluntary participant" is a refugee who lives in a county receiving an RSSP or TAP allocation, whose entry date is fewer than five years before the application date and who is not required to participate in RSSP or TAP as a condition of receipt of RCA or who does not receive RCA.

Replaces: Part of 5101:1-2-40, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.2, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.3, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.4, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.5

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/76, 12/31/77, 11/22/81, 10/21/82, 11/1/82, 4/1/83, 2/9/84 (temp.), 5/1/84, 7/1/84, 7/2/84, 9/1/84 (Emer.), 10/1/84 (Emer.), 11/17/84, 12/27/84, 1/1/85 (Emer.), 4/1/85, 8/1/86 (Emer.), 10/3/86, 7/1/88, 1/1/89 (Emer.), 1/15/89 (Emer.), 4/1/89, 4/1/89 (Emer.), 10/1/89 (Emer.), 11/1/89, 11/17/89 (Emer.), 12/16/89, 1/1/90 (Emer.), 4/1/90, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 4/1/92, 10/1/92 (Emer.), 12/21/92, 9/1/94, 10/1/95, 1/1/96, 5/1/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/00, 10/1/00, 3/1/02, 11/1/02, 7/1/05

5101:1-2-40.1 Refugee cash assistance.

Refugee cash assistance (RCA) provides time-limited cash assistance to refugees who are not eligible for Ohio works first (OWF) or supplemental security income (SSI) and who meet the other eligibility requirements of this rule.

(A) Who is eligible for RCA?

(1) Refugees who are not eligible for OWF or SSI;

(2) Whose entry date is within eight months of the application date; and

(3) Who meet the application and income requirements of this rule.

(B) Who is not eligible for RCA?

(1) Refugees participating in a matching grant program through a resettlement agency.

(2) Refugees who are eligible for OWF or SSI.

(3) Refugees who are full-time students in an institution of higher education.

(4) Refugees who have quit a job or refused a valid offer of employment within the immediate thirty calendar days preceding the refugee's application for cash assistance.

(C) How long may a refugee receive RCA?

(1) The eligibility period for RCA begins with the refugee's entry date and ends the last day of the eighth month after the entry date. For example, a refugee whose entry date is January first and a refugee whose entry date is January twentieth both have an eligibility period that begins in the month of January and ends the last day of August of the same year.

(2) When the first eight months since the entry date have passed, the refugee is no longer eligible for RCA.

(3) The eligibility period for a refugee child with an interim assistance letter from the department of health and human services, office of refugee resettlement (ORR) ends ninety days after the individual's entry date.

(D) What are the eligibility criteria for RCA?

(1) The application process and procedures are set forth in rule 5101:1-2-01 of the Administrative Code.

(2) The county agency must first determine whether the refugee is eligible for OWF. If the refugee meets all of the requirements for OWF, the individual becomes a regular OWF participant. When the county agency determines that a refugee does not meet the requirements of OWF, the individual has potential eligibility for RCA.

(3) All refugees who allege blindness or a disability, or who are at least sixty-five years of age, must be referred immediately to the social security administration to apply for SSI.

(a) Refugees may receive RCA until SSI benefits begin if the conditions of eligibility for RCA are met.

(b) When an SSI payment is made in the same month an RCA benefit is issued, the county agency must initiate overpayment activity.

(4) The county agency must determine eligibility for RCA within thirty days of the application date, as described in rule 5101:1-2-01 of the Administrative Code.

(5) The county agency must use the application date, as defined in rule 5101:1-2-01 of the Administrative Code, as the date RCA begins.

(a) For individuals eligible for RCA, the county agency must process a partial payment for the month of initial eligibility whenever the date of initial eligibility begins too late in the month to authorize assistance with that effective date. Procedures explained in rule 5101:1-23-40 of the Administrative Code apply to proration of such benefits.

(b) For a refugee who applies for RCA so that the only assistance payment would be for the refugee's last month of eligibility, the assistance payment must be made for that month, even if the payment is not issued until after the end of the last month of time-limited eligibility.

(6) Income eligibility, budgeting requirements and payment levels set forth in rule 5101:1-23-20 of the Administrative Code must be applied in the determination of initial eligibility, continued eligibility, and the amount of cash assistance for RCA.

(a) What is not included in the eligibility determination?

(i) Resources remaining in the individual's country of origin.

(ii) Any assistance a refugee receives from a resettlement agency as part of the reception and placement grant.

(iii) Resources and income of a sponsor.

(b) When the parent of a child in the RCA assistance group does not meet the status requirement as specified in paragraph (B)(10) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code, the alien parent is excluded from the RCA assistance group. The income of the ineligible alien parent is counted as unearned income, following application of the income allocation methodology as set forth in rule 5101:1-23-20.2 of the Administrative Code.

(c) Because a couple's eligibility is determined as an economic unit, the income of a spouse who is no longer RCA eligible due to the time limitation must be used in determining RCA eligibility for the spouse who is still within the time limit. The budgeting method set forth in paragraph (A)(2)(d) of rule 5101:1-23-20 of the Administrative Code is applicable in determining eligibility for the spouse who is still within the time limit.

(d) When a required member of the RCA assistance group is ineligible for RCA because the member fails to meet the immigration status requirements as specified in paragraph (B)(10) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code or because any of the conditions set forth in paragraph (H) of this rule are met, the income of the ineligible member is included in the determination of eligibility and payment level for the remaining member(s) of the RCA assistance group, as set forth in paragraphs (A)(2)(c), (C) and (H)(2) of rule 5101:1-23-20 of the Administrative Code.

(7) Reapplication requirements are set forth in rule 5101:1-2-10 of the Administrative Code.

(E) What are the county agency's responsibilities related to resettlement agencies?

(1) When a refugee receiving reception and placement services from a resettlement agency applies for cash assistance, the county agency must:

(a) Promptly notify the local resettlement agency that the refugee applied for cash assistance, and

(b) Confirm with the resettlement agency that the refugee has not voluntarily quit or refused a valid offer of employment in the thirty days prior to applying for cash assistance.

(2) The county agency must notify the resettlement agency of any action which involves:

(a) The termination of benefits,

(b) The removal of one or more people from the assistance group, or

(c) A change in the delivery of benefits.

(F) What are the county agency's administrative responsibilities?

(1) Verification and reporting procedures are set forth in rule 5101:1-2-20 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Use of the systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) system, as described in rule 5101:1-1-50 of the Administrative Code, applies to applicants for RCA. The SAVE system does not contain information about victims of a severe form of trafficking, nonimmigrant alien family members of victims of trafficking or refugees with interim assistance letters. Call the toll-free trafficking verification line at(866) 401-5510 to verify status and to notify the ORR of the benefits for which the individual has applied.

(3) Rule 5101:1-1-03 of the Administrative Code applies to the confidentiality, safeguarding and sharing of information related to applicants, recipients or former recipients of RCA.

(4) Rules 5101:1-23-70 and 5101:1-23-60 of the Administrative Code regarding recovery of overpayments and corrections of underpayments apply to recipients or former recipients of RCA.

(5) An RCA applicant or recipient has all the hearing and notice requirement rights set forth in division 5101:6 of the Administrative Code. A hearing need not be granted when assistance is terminated because the eligibility time period has passed, unless there is an unresolved disputed issue of fact related to the individual's entry date.

(6) The criteria for destruction of RCA assistance group records is subject to the procedures outlined in rule 5101:9-9-21 of the Administrative Code.

(G) What are the work activity requirements for recipients of RCA?

(1) Ohio works first work activity requirements do not apply to recipients of RCA. Employable RCA recipients must participate in refugee social services program (RSSP) or targeted assistance program (TAP) activities in the county in which they reside, as described in rules 5101:1-2-40.2 to 5101:1-2-40.5 of the Administrative Code.

(a) There is no minimum number of hours of participation in employment services or employability services to receive RCA.

(b) The refugee must abide by the agreed upon services outlined in the individual employability plan.

(2) County agencies receiving an RSSP or TAP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16 or 5101:9-6-16.1 of the Administrative Code must:

(a) Provide or arrange for employable RCA recipients to receive employment services and employability services through the RSSP or TAP, as described in rules 5101:1-2-40.2 to 5101:1-2-40.5 of the Administrative Code, within thirty days.

(b) Inform refugees in writing that failure without good cause to participate or to report as requested by the provider may affect the assistance payment.

(c) Monitor changes in exemption status and refer refugees who are not exempt from participation to employment and employability services.

(d) Permit, but not require, the voluntary registration for employment services of an RCA recipient who is exempt from participation as set forth in paragraph (B)(2) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code. The cash benefit cannot be impacted by failure or refusal to participate.

(3) County agencies not receiving an RSSP or TAP allocation may refer RCA recipients to employment services and English language training in their area. Refugees may voluntarily participate in such services and their RCA benefit cannot be impacted by failure to participate.

(H) What are the refugee's responsibilities?

(1) The refugee must provide documentation of refugee status, as described in paragraph (B)(10) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code.

(2) The refugee must provide the name of the resettlement agency that helped with resettlement in the U.S. Refugees with status documentation described in paragraphs (B)(10)(a), (c), (d), (e), (f), (g), (h), (i) and (j) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code may not have worked with a resettlement agency and are therefore exempt from this requirement.

(3) As a condition for receipt of RCA, all employable assistance group members, except for good cause shown, are required to:

(a) Participate in the RSSP or TAP, as described in rules 5101:1-2-40.2 to 5101:1-2-40.5 of the Administrative Code, within thirty days of receipt of assistance.

(b) Comply with the provisions of the individual employability plan as described in rules 5101:1-2-40.2 to 5101:1-2-40.4 of the Administrative Code.

(c) Go to job interviews arranged by the county agency, provider or resettlement agency which was responsible for the initial resettlement of the refugee.

(d) Accept at any time, from any source, an offer of employment that meets the requirements in rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code.

(4) Inability to communicate in English does not exempt a refugee from participation in employment services or acceptance of appropriate offers of employment.

(I) What if the refugee fails or refuses to cooperate with the individual employability plan, voluntarily quits a job or refuses a job offer?

(1) The county agency must determine whether good cause exists as described in paragraph (F) of rule 5101:1-3-11 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Sanctions are applied when an employable refugee quits a job or fails or refuses, without good cause, to comply with paragraph (H) of this rule.

(a) If the sanctioned individual is the only member of the RCA assistance group, the assistance must be terminated for the sanction period explained in paragraph (I)(2)(c) of this rule.

(b) If there are other assistance group members, the county agency must not take into account the sanctioned individual's needs in determining the remaining assistance group's need for assistance.

(c) The sanction period is three payment months for the first failure and RCA is terminated for any subsequent failure.

(3) Refugees in receipt of RCA who are not considered employable, pursuant to paragraph (B)(2) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code, and who voluntarily participate in the RSSP or TAP must be deregistered from employability services and employment services for ninety days if they fail to comply with paragraph (H) of this rule without good cause. There is no impact on the cash benefit.

Replaces: 5101:1-2-40

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.02 , 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/76, 12/31/77, 11/22/81, 10/21/82, 11/1/82, 2/9/84 (temp.), 5/1/84, 7/1/84, 7/2/84, 10/1/84 (Emer.), 12/27/84, 1/1/85 (Emer.), 4/1/85, 8/1/86 (Emer.), 10/3/86, 7/1/88, 1/1/89 (Emer.), 4/1/89, 11/1/89, 1/1/90 (Emer.), 4/1/90, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 4/1/92, 10/1/92 (Emer.), 12/21/92, 9/1/94, 10/1/95, 1/1/96, 5/1/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/00, 10/1/00, 3/1/02, 11/1/02, 7/1/05

5101:1-2-40.2 Refugee social services program: eligibility and county agency responsibilities.

The refugee social services program (RSSP) provides employment services and employability services to refugees for the first five years from their entry date. The policies and procedures outlined in this rule apply to county agencies who receive an RSSP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16 of the Administrative Code.

(A) Who is eligible for RSSP?

(1) Refugees for whom less than five years have passed since their entry date and who reside in counties receiving an allocation of RSSP funds. If the county agency uses RSSP funds to offer citizenship and naturalization preparation services, there is no time limit for the receipt of those services.

(a) Refugees do not have to apply for or receive cash assistance to be eligible for RSSP services.

(b) Resources and income of the refugee are not considered when determining eligibility for RSSP.

(c) Refugees receiving benefits under the temporary assistance to needy families, Ohio works first (OWF), program are eligible to participate in RSSP services that are not available as part of the OWF program in the county in which they reside.

(d) Refugees participating in a matching grant program through a resettlement agency are eligible to participate in RSSP services that are not included in the resettlement agency's matching grant program. Specific services that cannot be provided to matching grant participants from RSSP include employment services and employment-related case management services, as described in paragraphs (B)(1)(a) and (B)(2)(a) of rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Refugees who are sixteen years of age or older and who are not full-time students in elementary or secondary schools may receive services set forth in paragraphs (B)(1)(a) and (C)(1)(a) of rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code if the services are intended to:

(a) Lead to part-time or temporary (e.g., summer) employment while the person is a student, or

(b) Lead to full-time permanent employment upon completion of schooling.

(3) A refugee child with an interim assistance letter from the department of health and human services, office of refugee resettlement (ORR) may receive services for up to ninety days after the individual's entry date.

(B) What are the county agency's responsibilities?

(1) County agencies receiving an RSSP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16 of the Administrative Code must:

(a) Afford all refugees an opportunity to apply for RSSP. Refugees applying for or in receipt of refugee cash assistance (RCA) or refugee medical assistance do not need to complete a separate application for RSSP;

(b) Determine eligibility for RSSP within thirty days of the application date;

(c) Complete a family self-sufficiency plan for each assistance group and an individual employability plan for each RSSP participant, as described in rule 5101:1-2-40.4 of the Administrative Code, within thirty days of the application date; and

(d) Provide or arrange for employment services and employability services for refugees to ensure services are available to refugees in the following order of priority:

(i) All refugees for the first year from their entry date who apply for services.

(ii) Refugees who are receiving cash assistance under OWF or RCA.

(iii) Unemployed refugees who are not receiving OWF, supplemental security income or RCA.

(iv) Employed refugees in need of services to retain employment or to attain economic independence.

(2) RSSP case records must contain documentation of refugee status in accordance with paragraph (B)(10) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code, including copies of both sides of status documentation.

(3) Use of the systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) system, as described in rule 5101:1-1-50 of the Administrative Code, applies to applicants for RSSP. The SAVE system does not contain information about victims of a severe form of trafficking, nonimmigrant alien family members of victims of trafficking or refugees with interim assistance letters. Call the toll-free trafficking verification line at(866) 401-5510 to verify status and to notify the ORR of the benefits for which the individual has applied.

(4) Eligibility redeterminations must be completed at least once every twelve months, or more frequently if needed.

(a) Information regarding changes in the RSSP status may come from the refugee, the resettlement agency or the RSSP provider.

(b) If a refugee begins working and is no longer eligible for RCA, mandatory RSSP participation stops. The refugee may participate in RSSP services as a voluntary participant.

(c) If there is a question about whether or not the refugee has employment and has not reported it to the county agency, the county agency must verify eligibility.

(5) Information relating to applicants, participants and former participants of RSSP is subject to confidentiality standards set forth in section 5101.27 of the Revised Code.

(6) A refugee applying for or in receipt of RSSP has all the hearing and notice requirement rights set forth in division 5101:6 of the Administrative Code. Except when services continue as a result of a timely hearing request, services must be terminated effective the end of the last month of the time-limited eligibility period as set forth in paragraphs (A)(1) and (A)(3) of this rule.

(7) Each county agency receiving an RSSP allocation must provide a plan to ODJFS by September first each year. The plan must:

(a) Describe the goals of the refugee program in the county and how the county agency plans to accomplish these goals. Describe specific goals related to refugee employment in the county and the plans to reach and monitor achievement of these goals.

(b) Describe how the county agency coordinates cash and medical assistance with RSSP services to encourage effective refugee resettlement and to promote employment and economic self-sufficiency as quickly as possible.

(c) Describe how the county agency ensures that language training and employment services are made available to refugees receiving cash assistance and to other refugees, including county agency efforts to actively encourage refugee registration for employment services.

(d) Explain the ways in which RSSP allocations will be used and how services are selected and monitored.

(e) Ensure that RSSP services are provided to refugees following the priority order defined in paragraph (B)(1)(d) of this rule.

(f) Designate a county agency staff person who is responsible for the coordination of RSSP services to refugees in the county.

(g) Designate an individual who must have the responsibility to provide timely and accurate reports to the Ohio department of job and family services.

(h) Assure:

(i) The county agency will comply with all state and federal statutes and regulations in effect during the time that it is receiving grant funding.

(ii) Services and benefits designed for or used by refugees are coordinated and not duplicated within the county.

(iii) Communication and collaboration occurs among refugee resettlement agencies, social service agencies, health providers and public agencies serving refugees.

(iv) RSSP funds are used primarily for employment services and employability services designed to assist refugees in obtaining jobs within one year of becoming enrolled in services in order to achieve and maintain economic self-sufficiency.

(v) All refugees have access to services and are not discriminated against based upon their limited English proficiency, race, religion, nationality, gender or political opinion in accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This includes providing an interpreter and translating documents into the refugee's primary language.

(C) What are the refugee's responsibilities?

(1) The refugee must provide documentation of refugee status, as described in paragraph (B)(10) of rule 5101:1-2-40 of the Administrative Code.

(2) The refugee must participate in employment services and employability services within thirty days of applying for RSSP.

(3) The refugee must comply with the provisions of the individual employability plan, as described in rule 5101:1-2-40.4 of the Administrative Code.

(a) The refugee must participate in the assigned employment services and employability services.

(b) The refugee must apply for employment opportunities as referred by the county agency, provider or resettlement agency.

(c) The refugee must go to job interviews arranged by the county agency, provider or resettlement agency.

(4) The refugee must accept at any time from any source, an offer of employment that meets the requirements of paragraph (A) of rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code, regardless of whether such job would interrupt a program of services planned or in progress unless:

(a) The refugee is currently participating in on-the-job training or vocational training which meets the requirements of paragraphs (C)(1)(b) and (C)(1)(c) of rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code and is included in the individual employability plan; or

(b) The refugee is enrolled full-time in a professional recertification program which meets the requirements of paragraph (C)(1)(d) of rule 5101:1-2-40.3 of the Administrative Code.

(5) Inability to communicate in English does not exempt a refugee from participation in employment services, employability services or acceptance of appropriate offers of employment.

(6) The refugee must provide documentation of good cause, as defined in paragraph (F) of rule 5101:1-3-11 of the Administrative Code, for failure to comply with RSSP requirements.

(7) The refugee has ten calendar days to report a change in employment status or any other factor that may affect RSSP eligibility to the county agency.

(D) What if the refugee fails or refuses to cooperate with the individual employability plan, voluntarily quits a job or refuses a job offer?

(1) The county agency must determine whether good cause exists as described in paragraph (F) of rule 5101:1-3-11 of the Administrative Code.

(2) If a mandatory participant fails to comply with a provision of the individual employability plan and the county agency determines that good cause does not exist, sanction or terminate the RCA in accordance with paragraph (I) of rule 5101:1-2-40.1 of the Administrative Code.

(3) When a voluntary participant fails to comply with a provision of the individual employability plan and the county agency determines that good cause does not exist, deregister the refugee from RSSP for three months for the first occurrence and six months for any subsequent failure.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 40.2, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.3, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.4, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.5

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 4/1/1983; 9/1/1984 (Emer.), 11/17/1984, 1/15/1989 (Emer.), 4/1/1989 (Emer.), 10/1/1989 (Emer.), 11/17/1989 (Emer.), 12/16/1989, 10/1/1990 (Emer.), 7/1/2005

5101:1-2-40.3 Refugee social services program: services.

This rule outlines the specific employment services and employability services and requirements for the refugee social services program (RSSP).

(A) What criteria must employment, employment services and employability services meet?

(1) Employment services and employability services may be provided by the county agency or a provider. A provider must agree to advise the county agency whenever a refugee fails or refuses to:

(a) Participate in required services, or

(b) Accept an offer of employment.

(2) In planning and providing RSSP services, the county agency must take into account those services which a resettlement agency is required to provide for a refugee whom it sponsors in order to ensure the provision of seamless, coordinated, non-duplicative services to refugees.

(3) RSSP services must be refugee specific services which are designed to meet individual refugee needs and lead to self sufficiency as quickly as possible. Vocational or job skills training, on the job training or English language training need not be refugee specific.

(4) RSSP services must be provided to the maximum extent feasible:

(a) In a manner that is culturally and linguistically compatible with a refugee's language and cultural background, and

(b) Include the use of bilingual/bicultural women on service agency staff to ensure adequate service access by refugee women.

(5) All assignments must be within the scope of the individual's employability plan, as described in rule 5101:1-2-40.4 of the Administrative Code.

(6) RSSP services or employment must be related to the capability of the individual to perform the tasks on a regular basis.

(7) The total daily commuting time to and from home to the service or employment site must not normally exceed two hours, not including the transporting of a child to and from a child care facility.

(8) When child care is required, the care must meet the standards set forth in rule 5101:1-3-12 of the Administrative Code.

(9) The service or work site to which the individual is assigned must not be in violation of applicable federal, state or local health and safety standards.

(10) Assignments must not be made which are discriminatory in terms of age, sex, race, creed, color or national origin.

(11) Appropriate work may be temporary, permanent, full-time, part-time or seasonal work if such work meets the other standards of this rule.

(12) The wage must meet or exceed the state or federal minimum wage law, whichever is higher.

(13) The daily hours of work and the weekly hours of work must not exceed those customary to the occupation.

(14) No individual may be required to accept employment if:

(a) The position offered is vacant due to a strike, lockout or other bona fide labor dispute; or

(b) The individual would be required to work for an employer contrary to the conditions of existing membership in the union governing that occupation. However, employment not governed by the rules of a union in which the refugee is a member may be deemed appropriate.

(15) The quality of training must meet local employers' requirements so that the individual must be in a competitive position within the local labor market.

(B) What services are required as part of a county agency's RSSP program?

(1) A county agency must arrange for the following employment services for RSSP participants:

(a) Development of a family self-sufficiency plan for each assistance group.

(b) Development of an employability plan for each RSSP participant.

(c) World of work and job orientation.

(d) Job clubs.

(e) Job workshops.

(f) Job development.

(g) Referral to job opportunities.

(h) Job search.

(i) Job placement and follow-up.

(2) Employability services, including:

(a) Employment-related case management services, including the determination of appropriate services to refer a refugee to, referral to such services and the tracking of the refugee's participation in such services.

(b) English language training, with an emphasis on English as it relates to obtaining and retaining a job.

(i) To avoid interference with employment, English language training must be provided to the fullest extent possible outside normal working hours.

(ii) English language training must be provided in a concurrent time period with employment or other employment-related services.

(iii) English language testing must be conducted to determine if the refugee is able to benefit from an available English language training program.

(a)Refugees who test at a level above the available level of English language training are exempt from further participation in English language training.

(b)Refugees who test at a level below the available level of English language training must participate in English language training.

(C) What additional services are allowed in the RSSP?

(1) A county agency may arrange for refugees to participate in additional services as outlined in the individual employability plan. Services must be designed to lead to the earliest possible employment and may include the following employability services:

(a) Employability assessment services, including aptitude and skills testing.

(b) On the job training, when such training is provided at the employment site and is expected to result in full-time, permanent, unsubsidized employment with the employer who is providing the training.

(c) Vocational training which meets the following requirements:

(i) The training does not exceed one year.

(ii) It is appropriate to local labor market needs and is of sufficient quality to meet the requirements of local employers.

(iii) It is provided to the fullest extent possible outside normal working hours to avoid interference with employment.

(d) Skills recertification services to help refugees qualify to practice their professions in the U.S. The training may consist of full-time attendance in a college or professional training program, provided that:

(i) The refugee is employed;

(ii) The training is part of the refugee's individual employability plan;

(iii) The training does not exceed one year's duration, including any time enrolled in such program in the U.S. prior to the refugee's application for assistance;

(iv) The training is specifically intended to assist refugees in becoming certified in their professions; and (v) If the training is completed, it can realistically be expected to result in such certification.

(e) Child care, when necessary for participation in an employment or employability service or for the acceptance or retention of employment.

(f) Transportation, when necessary for participation in an employment or employability service or for the acceptance or retention of employment. Drivers' education is an allowable service.

(g) Translation and interpreter services, when necessary in connection with employment or participation in an employment service or employability service.

(h) Assistance in obtaining employment authorization documents.

(2) Other social services may be provided to refugees with prior approval of the state refugee coordinator. Such services can include:

(a) Information and referral services.

(b) Outreach services, including activities designed to familiarize refugees with available services, and facilitate access to these services.

(c) The following emergency services:

(i) Assessment and short term counseling to refugees or families in a perceived crisis;

(ii) Referral to appropriate resources; or

(iii) Making arrangements for necessary services.

(d) Health-related services:

(i) Information and referral to appropriate resources;

(ii) Assistance in scheduling appointments and obtaining services; and

(iii) Counseling to refugees or families to help them understand and identify their physical and mental needs and maintain or improve their physical and mental health.

(e) Home management services:

(i) Formal or informal instruction to refugees or families in the management of household budgets;

(ii) Home maintenance;

(iii) Nutrition;

(iv) Housing standards;

(v) Tenants' rights; and

(vi) Other consumer education services.

(f) Child care, when necessary for participation in a service other than an employment or employability service.

(g) Transportation, when necessary for participation in a service other than an employability service.

(h) Translation and interpreter service, when necessary for a purpose other than in connection with employment or participation in an employability service.

(i) Case management services, when necessary for a purpose other than in connection with employment or participation in employability services.

(j) Citizenship and naturalization preparation services, including:

(i) English language training and civics instruction to prepare refugees for citizenship;

(ii) Application assistance for adjustment to legal permanent resident status and citizenship status;

(iii) Assistance to disabled refugees in obtaining disability waivers for English and civics requirements for naturalization; and (iv) The provision of interpreter services for the citizenship interview.

(k) Any additional service, aimed at strengthening and supporting the ability of a refugee individual, family or refugee community to achieve and maintain economic self-sufficiency, family stability or community integration which has been demonstrated as effective and is not available from any other funding source.

(D) What services are not allowed as part of the RSSP program?

(1) Vocational training programs that last for more than a year.

(2) Educational programs that are not intended to lead to employment within a year.

(3) Any services provided by a resettlement agency to a refugee as part of a reception and placement or matching grant program.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 40.3

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 4/1/1983, 9/1/1984 (Emer.), 11/17/1984, 1/15/1989 (Emer.), 4/1/1989 (Emer.), 10/1/1989 (Emer.), 12/16/1989, 7/1/2005

5101:1-2-40.4 Refugee social services program: family self-sufficiency plan and individual employability plan requirements.

(A) What are the requirements related to the family self-sufficiency plan and the individual employability plan?

(1) The family self-sufficiency and individual employability plans may be developed by the county agency, resettlement agency or provider. If a plan is completed by an entity other than the county agency, the county agency may accept the plan if it determines that the plan is appropriate for the refugee and meets the requirements of this rule.

(2) The family self-sufficiency and individual employability plans must be completed in collaboration with the refugee.

(3) The plans may be modified to reflect changed services or employment conditions.

(B) What are the requirements of the family self-sufficiency plan?

(1) A family self-sufficiency plan must be completed for each assistance group receiving refugee social services program (RSSP) services that outlines the plan for the assistance group to become self-supporting through the employment of one or more assistance group members.

(2) The minimum elements of a family self-sufficiency plan are the following:

(a) Agency, worker and the date that the plan was completed;

(b) Identifying information, including the family's:

(i) Name;

(ii) Address;

(iii) Telephone number;

(iv) Nationality;

(v) Entry date;

(vi) CRIS-E case number (when applicable); and

(vii) Social security number;

(c) Assistance group size and composition;

(d) Employment status of adults in the household;

(e) Current income, current status of benefits being provided by the county agency and job status;

(f) Budget plan that addresses family needs to include rent, utilities, other basic needs and transportation;

(g) Whether an individual employability plan is indicated for more than one adult in the assistance group for the assistance group to become self-sufficient; and

(h) Signatures and dates of the person completing the family self-sufficiency plan and the refugee.

(C) What are the requirements for the individual employability plan?

(1) An individual employability plan must be developed as part of a family self-sufficiency plan where applicable for each RSSP participant.

(2) The individual employability plan is the primary document of accountability for a refugee's participation in RSSP. The individual employability plan is a mutual agreement between the refugee and the county agency.

(3) In developing an individual employability plan, the county agency must consider the following:

(a) The plan must be developed for each refugee receiving RSSP services.

(b) The individual employability plan must have a definite employment goal leading to the earliest possible employment, attainable in the shortest time period consistent with the employability of the refugee in relation to job openings in the area.

(c) The individual employability plan must not discourage or delay looking for employment or accepting offers of employment.

(4) The minimum elements of an individual employability plan are the following:

(a) Agency, worker and the date that the plan was completed;

(b) Identifying information, including the refugee's:

(i) Name;

(ii) Address;

(iii) Telephone number;

(iv) Date of birth;

(v) Nationality;

(vi) Entry date;

(vii) CRIS-E case number (when applicable);

(viii) Alien registration number from the U.S. citizenship and immigration service (USCIS) documentation; and

(ix) Social security number;

(c) Education level;

(d) Whether or not a disabling factor is present; if a factor is indicated, indicate date of referral to bureau of vocational rehabilitation;

(e) Whether the refugee is participating in a matching grant program through a resettlement agency;

(f) Results of English language testing and documentation of placement in English language training, when needed;

(g) Barriers to employment;

(h) Support service requirements for employment; e.g., transportation, child care, health-related services, English language training;

(i) Current participation in training, education or other employment programs;

(j) Assigned RSSP employment services and employability services to include:

(i) Name and address of service provider;

(ii) Dates of assigned services; and

(iii) Expected hours of participation;

(k) Immediate and long-range employment goals;

(l) The following statement which, if the refugee does not speak English, must be explained in the refugee's native language: "The information contained on these pages is true and correct to the best of my knowledge. I understand that this plan is intended to help me find employment. I must report any changes in employment status, income or family composition to my caseworker/counselor. I also authorize the provider of employability services to notify the county agency in regard to any employment which is found for me."; and

(m) Signatures of the refugee and employment case manager, and dates of the signatures.

Replaces: 5101:1-2- 40.4, Part of 5101:1-2- 40.5

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 9/1/1984 (Emer.), 11/17/1984, 10/1/1989 (Emer.), 11/17/1989 (Emer.), 12/16/1989, 10/1/1990 (Emer.), 7/1/2005

5101:1-2-40.5 Targeted assistance program.

The targeted assistance program (TAP) provides employment services and employability services to refugees for the first five years from their entry date. The policies and procedures outlined in this rule apply to county agencies that receive a TAP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16.1 of the Administrative Code.

(A) The requirements for county agencies receiving a TAP allocation pursuant to rule 5101:9-6-16.1 of the Administrative Code are the same as the requirements for the refugee social services program(RSSP) outlined in rules 5101:1-2-40.2 to 5101:1-2-40.4 of the Administrative Code, with the exception of the priority order for services.

(B) Services under the TAP program must be available to refugees for whom fewer than five years have passed since their entry date in the following order of priority:

(1) Cash assistance recipients, particularly long-term recipients.

(2) Unemployed refugees who are not receiving cash assistance.

(3) Employed refugees in need of services to retain employment or to attain economic independence.

(C) County agencies receiving a TAP allocation must describe how the TAP services will be designed to meet the priority order explained in paragraph (B)(2) of this rule in the county plan described in rule 5101:1-2-40.2 of the Administrative Code.

Effective: 09/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49

5101:1-2-50 Ohio works now.

The Ohio works now program provides additional food assistance benefits to food assistance assistance groups with minor children and employed parents to help offset the cost of being employed. The Ohio works now food assistance benefit is part of the temporary assistance for needy families program (TANF) and therefore is subject to the requirements of Title IV-A of the "Social Security Act," 110 Stat. 2113 (1996), 42 U.S.C. 601 .

(A) Who will receive the Ohio works now food assistance benefit?

(1) Participation in the Ohio works now program is determined automatically on a monthly basis based on data in the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E).

(2) For members of a food assistance assistance group to receive the Ohio works now benefit, data in CRIS-E must indicate the assistance group:

(a) Includes a minor child as defined in rule 5101:1-1-01 of the Administrative Code and the biological or adoptive parents of the minor child residing in the same household; or a pregnant woman with no other children who is at least in her sixth month of pregnancy; and

(b) At least one parent must be working thirty hours per week, with the exception of a single parent with a child under age six who is required to work twenty hours per week. Two-parent households are required to work a combined fifty-five hours per week with one parent working at least thirty hours per week.

(c) Meets federal TANF requirements under Title IV-A of the "Social Security Act," 110 Stat. 2113 (1996), 42 U.S.C. 601 , including citizenship.

(B) Who will not receive the Ohio works now food assistance benefit?

(1) Any food assistance assistance group that includes a member that is also receiving Ohio works first benefits in the month, including Ohio works first benefits received pending a state hearing pursuant to rule 5101:6-4-01 of the Administrative Code;

(2) A member of a food assistance assistance group that is receiving food assistance pending a state hearing on the issue of termination of benefits pursuant to rule 5101:6-4-01 of the Administrative Code; and

(3) Any food assistance assistance group that no longer meets the criteria set forth in paragraph (A)(2)of this rule.

(C) How are Ohio works now food assistance benefits issued?

(1) Ohio works now food assistance benefits will be issued to eligible assistance groups on their existing food assistance electronic benefit transfer (EBT) card.

(2) Ohio works now food assistance benefits shall be used pursuant to rule 5101:4-5-15 of the Administrative Code.

(D) Are Ohio works now benefits subject to Ohio works first and food assistance program requirements?

(1) A family in receipt of Ohio works now food assistance benefits is not subject to Ohio works first requirements, including, but not limited to:

(a) Assigning child support or cooperating with child support enforcement as set forth in rule 5101:1-3-10 of the Administrative Code.

(b) Participating in work activities as set forth in rule 5101:1-3-12 of the Administrative Code.

(c) Counting any month of receipt toward the time-limited receipt of TANF assistance as set forth in rule 5101:1-23-01 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Ohio works now food assistance benefits shall not be used in the calculation of participation hours for the food assistance employment and training program as set forth in rule 5101:4-3-31 of the Administrative Code.

(3) The Ohio works now food assistance benefit shall not be considered in the food assistance income eligibility determination and allotment amount.

(E) How are the amount and duration of the Ohio works now benefit determined?

(1) The amount of Ohio works now food assistance benefits to be issued will be determined by the Ohio department of job and family services and will be the same amount for each eligible food assistance assistance group. The monthly amount of Ohio works now food assistance will be set forth in an Ohio department of job and family services cash assistance action change transmittal letter which will be distributed to all county agencies.

(2) No more than one Ohio works now food assistance benefit may be issued to a food assistance assistance group per month.

(3) In order to confine Ohio works now expenditures to appropriated state funds, the director of the Ohio department of job and family services, or his designee, may issue an order at any time suspending the program or reducing the benefit amount. The order will be distributed to all county agencies on the same day and will remain in effect until rescinded.

(F) What is the county agency's responsibility in the case of erroneous payments or fraud?

(1) Each county agency shall take action to recover fraudulent assistance as defined by rule 5101:1-23-75 of the Administrative Code.

Cash, check, money order and credit or debit cards are acceptable forms of repayment; however, if a county agency does not have the capability to accept credit or debit cards it does not have to accept this form of repayment.

(2) Ohio works now food assistance benefits shall not be used to repay a claim of erroneous payment or overpayment for any public assistance program.

Effective: 01/01/2012
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/01/2017
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.80
Rule Amplifies: 5101.801

5101:1-2-55 [Rescinded] Ohio works first (OWF)/disability financial assistance (DFA) and /refugee cash assistance (RCA): delayed cash assistance payments and replacement warrants.

Effective: 05/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 02/11/2010
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.05 , 5115.03
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05 , 5115.03
Prior Effective Dates: 5/1/71, 5/1/75, 2/1/84 (Emer.), 5/1/84, 6/1/84, 4/19/85,
1/1/86 (Emer.), 2/3/86 (Emer.), 4/1/86, 10/1/88
(Emer.), 12/20/88, 10/1/91, 1/1/94 (Emer.), 3/18/94,
1/1/95, 1/1/96, 7/1/98, 10/1/98, 11/01/02, 3/1/07

5101:1-2-60 Repatriate program.

(A) What is the repatriate program?

(1) The United States (U.S.) repatriate program provides temporary assistance, care and treatment for persons after they have returned to this country.

(2) Temporary financial assistance is provided in the form of a loan that is required to be repaid to the U.S. government. It may be furnished to individuals for up to a maximum of ninety days from the date of arrival in the U.S.

(3) Temporary financial assistance includes:

(a) Cash assistance at the port of entry when it is determined that the repatriate has no such resources immediately available to him or her. Assistance provided to the individual includes:

(i) Transportation costs - a one-time expense to assist individuals in reaching their place of residence, the home of relatives, or the place where they will be resettled. The lowest cost and most direct means of transportation shall be used unless effective service to the individual calls for providing other accommodations. Transportation assistance will cover expenses incidental to travel such as meals and lodging en route and assistance with luggage, checking, storage, or transportation of personal effects.

(ii) Meals and food items - this includes the cost of a special diet as recommended by a physician;

(iii) Clothing - an initial supply of clothing, including coats, boots, shoes, etc.; and

(iv) Shelter - the need for temporary housing should not exceed five days at the point of entry.

Cash assistance will be nominal in amount if the repatriate's needs for temporary shelter and food are being met on a congregate basis, with cash provided only for personal items.

(b) The cost of necessary medical assistance, including payment of the cost of medical and hospital care which is necessary because of the condition of an eligible repatriate's health.

(i) This care shall be paid in accordance with the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) fee schedule.

(ii) In lieu of the ODJFS fee schedule, the customary fees paid by other third-party groups such as health maintenance organizations may be paid.

(c) The payment is based upon the TANF (Ohio works first-OWF) payment standard for the family assistance group size. There are other essential needs that may be provided such as household furnishings to make a home liveable and to provide for the safety, health and welfare of the repatriate and the repatriate's family. These needs can be authorized one time only.

(B) Who is eligible for assistance under the repatriate program?

In order for an individual to be eligible for assistance under the repatriate program, he or she shall meet the following:

(1) Eligibility must be certified by the U.S. department of state .

(2) The individual shall be a U.S. citizen or a dependent of a U.S. citizen including the following :

(a) Spouse;

(b) Parents;

(c) Spouse's parents;

(d) Grandparents;

(e) Unmarried minor children including adopted children and stepchildren;

(f) Unmarried adult children who are dependent because they have disabilities, including adopted children and stepchildren; and

(g) Minor siblings of the U.S. citizen and his or her spouse.

(3) The individual shall be returning to the U.S. from a foreign country as a result of:

(a) Destitution;

(b) Illness (including a mental disability); or

(c) War, threat of war or similar crisis.

(4) The individual has no income or resources immediately available for living expenses.

(a) Assistance for repatriated U.S. citizens shall be given when the individual's liquid resources are at or below the maximum resource limits as set forth in rule 5101:4-4-01 of the Administrative Code and the income is insufficient to meet the expenses for food, clothing, shelter, medical care, and other essential needs.

(b) Resources to be considered are only those immediately accessible. Resources are considered immediately accessible when they are in existence, under the control of the individual, and when the individual can utilize them. The fact that an individual may have resources in a foreign country does not affect eligibility if the foreign country prohibits their removal.

(c) Income eligibility must be determined. The individual may have income through an employer prior to his or her repatriation. When this occurs, the income and eligibility calculation shall be determined in accordance with rule 5101:1-23-20 of the Administrative Code.

(C) How does the repatriate program work?

(1) The U.S. department of state certifies the person(s) who qualify for assistance under this program.

(2) If an individual returns to the U.S. because of destitution or illness and needs assistance , the U.S. department of state will notify the office of refugee resettlement (ORR) in the department of health and human services (DHHS), who makes a referral to the international social service-United States of America branch, incorporated (ISS-USA) with information about the individual situation, arrival time and final destination.

(3) The ISS-USA will provide ODJFS with this information.

(4) ODJFS shall contact the county agency in the county of final destination.

(5) Following such notification, the county agency shall take the following actions:

(a) Determine the initial housing needed. If arrival occurs before the housing plans can be completed, a temporary hotel or motel may be used.

(b) Make plans to meet the repatriate and the repatriate's family. In most instances, this will be at the local airport.

(c) Advise the ISS-USA and ODJFS of the name, address and telephone number of the person meeting the repatriate and of the housing arrangements.

(d) Provide each repatriate with a copy of the "Welcome Package" provided by ISS-USA which explains the program and the requirements to repay the federal government for the cost of services received.

(e) The individual will also be asked to complete the repatriation program consent form which allows the ORR, and the repatriation program to collect, have access to, and disclose protected health information for the purpose of making program financial decisions .

(f) Establish a case record.

(g) Determine the repatriate's ability to repay as set forth in paragraph (F) of this rule and develop a repayment plan when possible.

(h) Determine eligibility for repatriate assistance and authorize financial and medical assistance in the form of county money payments.

(i) Refer all cases to the county agency social service area for counseling and referral for employment, referral for educational opportunities, occupational retraining, housing services, legal services, child care and protection, if indicated. Other services may also be necessary to help the repatriate and his or her family adapt to the changes in their circumstances and to become self-supporting as quickly as possible.

(j) Explore eligibility for other programs such as OWF, medicaid, and food assistance.

(k) Maintain a record of the period of eligibility and the amounts of the assistance the repatriate receives in two categories:

(i) Port of entry assistance (expenses at port of entry); and

(ii) Subsistence and resettlement assistance (initial expenses for resettling).

(D) How long can an individual receive assistance under the repatriate program?

(1) The assistance described in paragraph (A)(3)(c) of this rule may be authorized for a period of up to ninety days from the day of arrival of the eligible person into the U.S., provided the individual or family is not eligible for OWF or supplemental security income SSI. If the ninety-day period passes and there is no request for further assistance, the repatriate is no longer eligible under this program.

(2) If the repatriate is not eligible for assistance through OWF or SSI and is unable to attain self-support due to age, disability, or lack of vocational training, repatriate assistance may be extended for an additional nine months when authorized by the ISS-USA.

(3) The county agency shall submit any request for an extension to ODJFS, as soon as the need for additional assistance is recognized. The request for additional repatriate assistance shall be submitted prior to the expiration of the initial ninety-day period of eligibility.

(4) All requests for an extension of temporary assistance beyond the ninety-day period shall include the following information:

(a) The names of all family members, their country of citizenship, and their relationship to the U.S. citizen;

(b) Date and port of entry into the U.S.;

(c) Documentation regarding why the family is not eligible for or receiving OWF or SSI assistance;

(d) For cases where immigration status precludes a family from meeting eligibility for OWF assistance, the county agency shall document its efforts to resolve U.S. citizenship and immigration barriers;

(e) A statement describing the job search efforts of the head or heads of household; and

(f) Any special circumstances which describe the reasons why an individual or family is unable to achieve self-support should also be stated in the request.

(E) How much assistance can an individual receive under the repatriate program?

The maximum amount of assistance that an individual may be eligible to receive each month of the ninety-day period shall be based on the appropriate OWF payment standard for the family assistance group size.

(F) Is repayment required for individuals who receive assistance under the repatriate program?

(1) An individual who has received repatriate assistance shall be required to repay any or all of the cost of such assistance to the U.S. A cooperative agreement exists between the , ORR and the ISS-USA. A county agency who provides assistance to eligible individuals under the repatriate program will receive reimbursement from the ISS-USA.

(2) The county agency shall evaluate the repatriate's ability to repay during the initial contact and interview. The repatriate shall be required to sign the "Privacy Act Statement/Repayment Agreement" regardless of his or her ability to repay or the county agency recommendation to waive the repayment. The county agency shall forward the recommendation regarding financial ability of the repatriate to make repayment, the repatriation program consent form if signed, and the "Privacy Act Statement/Repayment Agreement" to ISS-USA within ten business days of the initial contact with the repatriate.

(3) In exploring the repatriate's ability to repay, the county agency shall take into account income and resources currently available to the repatriate and those resources which may be available in the future.

(4) Ability to repay will be considered to exist when income and/or resources in excess of continuing needs can be expected to become readily available to the individual within one year after self-support is attained. It is not intended that an individual deplete income and/or resources which are needed to become independent or to maintain independence in order to repay the federal government. Income and/or resources are to be considered readily available when they are in existence, under the control of the repatriate, and sufficient to be drawn upon for repayment. When exploring the repatriate's ability to repay, such factors as the type of usual occupation, amount of indebtedness, and employment history shall be considered.

(5) Assistance that is less than fifty dollars is impractical for collection and is not required to be repaid.

(G) What are the other requirements under the repatriate program?

(1) In the event of emergency repatriation situations that result from the U.S. department of state-assisted evacuation of U.S. citizens from a country due to crisis or natural disaster, the ORR will assume administrative responsibilities. These situations will generally be handled by the ORRas the lead agency responsible for arranging through state agencies for the reception, temporary care, and onward transportation to the final destination of non-combatant evacuees returned to the U.S. from a foreign country.

(2) Financial assistance under the repatriate program is subject to one hundred per cent federal reimbursement. It is essential that the county agencysubmit claims as soon as possible after the end of each month, but no later than ten business days after the close of the month. If claims cannot be submitted within the time frame designated, the county agency shall notify ISS-USA so that regulations can be followed to assure that federal funds will be obligated and available to pay the claim when it is received.

(3) The county agency is required to keep separate accounts for the repatriate program so that the transactions may be readily identifiable from those of other programs. A separate fiscal record should be established and maintained for each person for whom expenditures are made with sufficient information, including copies of bills paid and receipts, to enable the county agency to identify and support the costs for which reimbursement is requested.

(4) All hearing rights in accordance with division 5101:6 of the Administrative Code are to be afforded to applicants or recipients of the repatriate assistance program who wish to appeal a decision made by the county agency.

Effective: 08/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 05/11/2010 and 08/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49
Rule Amplifies: 5101.49
Prior Effective Dates: 1/1/74, 11/1/75, 7/1/76, 4/1/86, 10/1/89 (Emer.), 12/16/89, 5/1/95, 7/1/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/03, 9/1/08

5101:1-2-70 Issuance of cash assistance benefits.

(A) What are the options for the issuance of cash assistance benefits?

(1) Assistance groups applying for or in receipt of Ohio works first (OWF), disability financial assistance (DFA) and refugee cash assistance (RCA) have two options for the issuance of monthly cash benefits. The two options are:

(a) Electronic payment card; or

(b) Electronic funds transfer or direct deposit.

(2) The assistance group shall be informed of the two options at application and reapplication and provided informational material.

(B) What is the difference between the electronic payment card and electronic funds transfer?

(1) The electronic payment card is a pre-paid card system which transfers cash benefits to an account accessed by a magnetic strip card.

(2) The electronic funds transfer is a direct deposit system that transfers cash benefits electronically to individual bank accounts.

(C) How does the assistance group select one of the benefit issuance methods?

(1) Direct deposit

(a) If the assistance group selects direct deposit it shall complete the JFS 07344 "Direct Deposit Authorization" (rev. 8/2009). This form shall be retained by the county agency in the assistance group record.

(b) If the assistance group fails to designate an account suitable for direct deposit and submit the JFS 07344 within ten days, the county agency shall issue the benefits on the electronic payment card.

(2) Electronic payment card

(a) If the assistance group chooses the electronic payment card, the county agency shall make the appropriate designation in the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E). This will result in the mailing of the electronic payment card and informational material to the assistance group payee or protective payee.

(b) If the assistance group has not completed the process to activate the electronic payment card within sixty days from the day the benefits were authorized by the county agency, the county agency shall attempt to make contact with the assistance group to ensure that eligibility for cash benefits exists. If the assistance group has not completed the process to activate the electronic payment card within ninety days of the issuance of cash benefits, the benefits will be expunged on an ongoing basis ninety days from the benefit issuance date until the card is pinned.

(3) When a benefit issuance method is selected, no change will be made until the next reapplication, unless the county agency determines that there is good cause for a change before the next scheduled reapplication or the financial institution dishonors the assistance group's direct deposit account.

(D) Are there fees associated with these methods of issuance?

(1) Direct deposit

(a) There may be fees associated with direct deposit that are imposed by the financial institution. These fees are the responsibility of the assistance group.

(b) The financial institution cannot impose any charge for an account that it does not impose on its other customers for the same type of account.

(2) Electronic payment card

(a) Certain transactions may incur fees associated with the electronic payment card. A complete list of fees is provided by the vendor in the client disclosure statement materials.

(b) Fees associated with the use of the electronic payment card will be deducted from the balance on the card.

(c) Fees deducted from the balance on the card will be identified on the assistance group's account. The assistance group can confirm the balance by tracking the account on the internet or calling the electronic payment card vendor's customer service number.

(d) If the assistance group disputes the fees associated with the use of the card, the county agency shall refer them to the electronic payment card vendor's customer service number for resolution.

(E) What happens if the assistance group's benefit is lost, stolen or not received?

(1) Direct deposit

(a) If the assistance group receives benefits by direct deposit and the bank account has closed or the direct deposit has been dishonored, the assistance group must notify the county agency.

(b) If the assistance group fails to notify the county agency prior to the issuance of the benefit, the payment will not be accepted by the financial institution for deposit and will be returned to the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS).

(c) If a direct deposit has been rejected by a financial institution the county agency shall make contact with the assistance group to determine if either a change in the direct deposit bank account is needed or if there is good cause to change the issuance method to the electronic payment card.

(2) Electronic payment card

(a) If the electronic payment card is lost, stolen or not received, the assistance group must contact the electronic payment card vendor's customer service number to request a replacement card.

(b) Each assistance group can receive up to four replacement cards at no cost every twelve months. The twelve month period of time is calculated from the initial card issuance date.

(c) There is a fee for additional replacement cards after the four free replacements.

(3) There may be a rare situation where a paper warrant is issued. If a paper warrant is issued and is either lost, stolen or not received, the county agency shall take the action necessary to stop payment on the missing warrant and contact ODJFS to request a replacement warrant to be issued. The issuance payment method in CRIS-E must be overridden by ODJFS before a replacement warrant can be issued. A handwriting sample and affidavit may still be required to be completed by the assistance group before a replacement warrant is issued.

(F) Who does an assistance group contact if there are problems?

(1) Direct deposit

(a) The assistance group shall be advised to report changes to the county agency so that the direct deposit payment can continue with as little interruption as possible. This includes a change in the account number, financial institution, or a change in the payee for the assistance group.

(b) If there is a change in a bank account or savings and loan account number or transit routing number, all direct deposit data must be re-entered on the appropriate screen in CRIS-E.

(c) A change in county of residence will not result in a change in benefit payment method from direct deposit.

(d) If there is a dispute or question relating to purchases or fees assessed on the direct deposit bank account, the assistance group shall contact the financial institution who holds the direct deposit bank account.

(2) Electronic payment card

(a) If there is an issue or question regarding the amount of cash assistance benefits that are issued, the assistance group shall contact the county agency.

(b) If there is a technical issue related to use of the electronic payment card, the assistance group shall contact the electronic payment card vendor's customer service.

(c) If there is a dispute or question regarding purchases or fees assessed on the account, the assistance group shall contact the electronic payment card vendor's customer service.

Effective: 05/01/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/31/2014 and 05/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 329.03 , 5107.05 , 5115.03
Rule Amplifies: 329.03 , 5101.33 , 5107.05 , 5107.12 , 5115.03 , 5115.06
Prior Effective Dates: 5/1/71, 5/1/75, 2/1/84 (Emer.), 2/9/84 (temp.), 5/1/84, 6/1/84, 4/19/85, 1/1/86 (Emer.), 2/3/86 (Emer.), 4/1/86, 10/1/88 (Emer.), 12/20/88, 10/1/91, 1/1/94 (Emer.), 3/18/94, 1/1/95, 1/1/96, 5/1/97, 7/1/98, 10/1/98, 11/1/02, 7/1/03, 8/1/08, 2/1/09, 8/1/09, 5/1/10, 5/15/13

5101:1-2-80 [Rescinded] Direct deposit-electronic funds transfer of cash assistance payments.

Effective: 05/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 02/11/2010
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 329.03 , 5107.05 , 5115.07
Rule Amplifies: 329.03 , 5107.05 , 5115.07
Prior Effective Dates: 2/9/84 (Temp.), 5/1/84, 1/1/96, 5/1/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/03,
8/1/08, 8/1/09

5101:1-2-85 Cash assistance: new hire reporting program (W-4).

(A) What is the new hire reporting program?

Pursuant to section 3121.891 of the Revised Code, all employers are required to provide information to the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) about employees who are newly hired, rehired, or who have returned to work within twenty days from the date of hire. This requirement was mandated under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, Public Law 104-193 (1996), 42 U.S.C. 653a .

(B) How is the new hire information used?

Pursuant to section 3121.898 of the Revised Code, the county agency shall use new hire information to ensure all employment information has been reported, verified and used appropriately when determining cash assistance benefits. Alerts are generated in the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E) when there is a match with new hire information.

(C) What is the county agency's responsibility when a new hire alert is received?

(1) Immediately upon receipt of a new hire alert, but no later than three working days, the county agency shall make telephone contact with the assistance group. The information obtained as a result of the telephone contact shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(a) Hourly rate of pay;

(b) Hours worked per week; and

(c) Correct mailing address of the employer.

(2) If the assistance group does not have a telephone or cannot be immediately reached, the JFS 04219 "Request for Contact Important Notice" (rev. 4/2010) or the CRIS-E equivalent shall be sent within three working days.

(3) All information reported by the client shall be immediately followed up with a request for hard copy verification (e.g. pay stubs, employment verification form). If the assistance group is having trouble obtaining the verification, the best available documentation may be acceptable (e.g. third party statement, call to the employer, or client statement).

(4) Information reported by client statement shall be used in determining eligibility for cash assistance benefits until employer verification can be obtained.

Replaces: 5101:1-2-85

Effective: 01/01/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3121.8911 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 3121.891 , 3121.898 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/98, 3/1/02, 10/1/05

5101:1-2-90 The Ohio works first employment incentive pilot program.

The Ohio works first employment incentive pilot program shall be operated for three years in five participating county agencies. The names of the participating county agencies shall be published in a cash assistance action change transmittal.

(A) What is the Ohio works first employment incentive pilot program?

The pilot program provides a cash incentive payment to caseworkers in participating counties that help Ohio works first (OWF) participants find employment that leads to the participant being ineligible for OWF for at least six months due to an increase in earned income resulting from employment.

(B) Who is considered a caseworker?

For the purposes of this rule, "caseworker" means an employee of a county agency or of an entity the county agency has contracted with to perform tasks under the pilot, that has signed a self-sufficiency contract developed in accordance with rule 5101:1-3-11 of the Administrative Code.

(C) Who is considered an OWF participant?

For purposes of this rule, "OWF participant" means a work eligible individual, as the term is defined in paragraph (EE) of rule 5101:1-1-01 of the Administrative Code.

(D) When has a caseworker helped an OWF participant find employment that leads to the participant becoming ineligible for OWF?

When the caseworker signed the OWF participant's self-sufficiency contract and all of the following conditions have been met:

(1) The self-sufficiency contract included an assignment of the OWF participant to at least one core work activity;

(2) After the date of the caseworker's signature on the self-sufficiency contract, the OWF participant's assistance group was determined to no longer be eligible for OWF due to income earned by the participant;

(3) The self-sufficiency contract signed by the caseworker was in effect on the date that OWF benefits terminated;

(4) The OWF participant received OWF benefits for at least three consecutive months prior to termination; and

(5) Since being terminated, the former OWF participant remained ineligible for OWF for six consecutive months and during the six month period, the former OWF participant was not:

(a) Denied OWF benefits for any other reason than excess earned income;

(b) Serving a disqualification period as a result of an intentional program violation;

(c) Otherwise ineligible for OWF due to the time limit described in rule 5101:1-23-01 of the Administrative Code;

(d) Subject to a sanction or penalty imposed under division 5101:1 of the Administrative Code; or

(e) In receipt of OWF benefits pursuant to rule 5101:6-7-01 of the Administrative Code.

(E) When does a caseworker qualify for an incentive payment?

A caseworker qualifies for an incentive payment upon verification of each condition described in paragraph (D) of this rule. Qualification for an incentive payment is contingent upon available funding, compliance with this rule and all other applicable state and federal laws and regulations.

(F) What are the responsibilities of a participating county agency?

Each participating county agency shall:

(1) Include in every self-sufficiency contract and plan:

(a) The name, date and signature of each individual the county agency expects to assist the OWF participant in finding employment. This includes, but is not limited to:

(i) The appraisal and assessment of the OWF participant;

(ii) The development of the OWF participant's self-sufficiency contract and plan; or

(iii) Providing supportive services to the OWF participant.

(b) When there is a change to the individual(s) expected to help the OWF participant find employment, the county agency shall initiate an amendment to the self-sufficiency contract in accordance with rule 5101:1-3-11 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Develop a procedure for caseworkers to submit verification that they qualify for an incentive payment.

(3) Process the incentive payment within thirty days of determining a caseworker qualifies for an incentive payment.

(4) Provide monthly reports to ODJFS.

(5) Maintain documentation to support the payment of each incentive payment.

(G) How much is the incentive payment?

The incentive payment is equal to three hundred dollars per former OWF participant that meets the criteria described in paragraph (D) of this rule. When the OWF participant was part of a two-parent assistance group, as that term is defined in rule 5101:1-3-01 of the Administrative Code, the incentive payment shall be six hundred dollars.

(H) How will the incentive payment be divided when more than one caseworker qualifies for an incentive payment for helping the same OWF participant find employment?

Notwithstanding the prohibitions in paragraph (I) of this rule, the incentive payment shall be divided equally between the individuals that signed the self-sufficiency contract as required by paragraph (F)(1) of this rule. When the amount of the incentive payment will not divide equally, the remainder shall be retained as part of the participating county agency's incentive pilot program allocation.

(I) Prohibitions

The following prohibitions apply to the Ohio works first employment incentive pilot program:

(1) Obtaining a signature from a caseworker on the self-sufficiency contract shall not delay the authorization of OWF benefits or assignment of a work eligible individual to a work activity;

(2) The county agency shall not process more than one incentive payment per termination;

(3) An OWF participant may have no more than one self-sufficiency contract in effect at a time;

(4) No incentive payment will be issued to a former caseworker whose employment ended with the participating county agency or contracted agent before all conditions in paragraph (D) of this rule were met; and

(5) The county agency shall not impose any verification or reporting requirements on a current or former OWF participant in order to verify caseworker eligibility for an incentive payment.

Effective: 09/12/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 09/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: Section 751.35 of Am. Sub. H.B. No. 483
Rule Amplifies: Section 751.35 ofAm. Sub. H.B. No. 483