(A) Providing replacements
(1) Benefit issuance: subject to the restrictions in paragraphs (C) and (D) of this rule, county agencies shall provide replacement issuances to an AG when the AG reports that food purchased with food assistance benefits was destroyed in an AG misfortune; or
(2) Electronic benefit transfer card: if the electronic benefit transfer card is lost, stolen or not received, the AG must contact the electronic benefit transfer vendor customer service to request a replacement card.
(B) Replacement prohibited
County agencies shall not provide replacement benefits to AGs if benefits are lost, stolen or misplaced after receipt, if benefits are totally destroyed after receipt in other than a disaster or misfortune, or if benefits sent by registered or certified mail are signed for by anyone residing with or visiting the AG. In addition, replacement issuances shall not be made if the AG or its authorized representative has not signed and returned the AG statement required in paragraph (G) of this rule, where applicable.
(C) Where the food and nutrition service (FNS) has issued a disaster declaration, and the AG has received a replacement allotment, and is later determined eligible for disaster food assistance under the provisions of rule 5101:4-6-32 of the Administrative Code it would receive only a supplement amount to bring the AG's allotment up to the maximum disaster allotment for the appropriate AG size.
(D) Replacement restrictions
Replacement issuances shall be provided only if an AG timely reports a loss orally or in writing, and provides a statement of nonreceipt if the original allotment has not been returned to the county agency at the time of the request for replacement. The report is considered timely if it is made to the county agency within ten days of the date benefits or food purchased with food assistance benefits is destroyed in an AG misfortune.
(E) Restrictions on number of replacements
The number of replacement issuances an AG may receive shall be limited as follows.
(1) County agencies shall limit replacement issuances to a total of two countable replacements in six months for benefits not received in, or stolen from the mail, including partial allotments; benefits not received in a direct access system or any other issuance system requiring an individual to appear at a county agency to receive its benefits. However, no limit shall be put on the number of replacements of partial allotments if the partial allotments are due to county agency error. Separate limits shall not apply for each of these types of loss.
(2) County agencies shall limit replacement issuances per AG to two countable replacements in six months for benefits reported as destroyed in an AG misfortune. This limit is in addition to the limit in paragraph (E)(1) of this rule.
(3) No limit on the number of replacements shall be placed on the replacement of benefits which were improperly manufactured or mutilated, or food purchased with food assistance benefits which was destroyed in an AG misfortune.
(4) In order for a replacement to be considered noncountable, the replacement must not result in a loss to the food assistance program. The replacement issuance shall not be considered a countable replacement if the original or replacement issuance is returned or otherwise recouped by the county agency or the replacement is being issued due to a county agency issuance error.
(F) Except for AGs certified under rule 5101:4-6-32 of the Administrative Code, replacement issuances shall be provided in the amount of the loss to the AG, up to a maximum of one month's allotment, unless the issuance includes restored benefits which shall be replaced up to their full value, or combined allotments exceeding the value of one month's allotment.
(G) AG statement
Prior to issuing a replacement, the county agency shall obtain from a member of the AG a signed JFS 07222, "Statement Requesting Replacement of Food Stamp Benefits," (rev. 01/02) attesting to the AG's loss. This statement shall not be required if the reason for the replacement is that the original benefits were improperly manufactured or mutilated, or if the original issuance has already been returned. The agency may mail the JFS 07222 to the AG for completion and the AG may return it to the agency by mail, if the AG member is unable to come into the office because of age, handicap or distance from the office and is unable to appoint an authorized representative. If the signed JFS 07222 is not received within ten days of the date of report, no replacement shall be made. If the tenth day falls on a weekend or holiday, and the JFS 07222 is received the day after the weekend or holiday, the county agency shall consider the JFS 07222 timely received. If the JFS 07222 is received more than ten days after the date of the report, a JFS 07235, "Action Taken On Your Request for Replacement of Food Stamp Benefits," (rev. 2/01) or its computer-generated equivalent in accordance with Chapter 5101:6-2 of the Administrative Code denying the replacement shall be issued within two working days. The JFS 07222 shall be retained in the case record. It shall attest to the nonreceipt, theft, loss, or destruction of the original issuance and specify the reason for the replacement. It shall also state that the original or replacement issuance will be returned to the county agency if the original issuance is recovered by the AG and that the AG is aware of the penalties for intentional misrepresentation of the facts, including but not limited to, a charge of perjury for a false claim.
(H) Time limits for making replacements
Replacement issuances shall be provided to AGs within ten days after report of nondelivery or loss in the mail (fifteen days if issuance was by certified or registered mail) or within two working days of the county agency receiving the signed AG statement required in paragraph (G) of this rule, or within two working days of the agency receiving any requested verification, whichever is later. Benefits issued by mail shall be considered as nondelivered or lost in the mail if they are not received on the second working day after being mailed. If the AG has already been issued the maximum allowable number of countable replacements, subsequent replacements shall be delayed until the county agency has verified that the original issuance was returned.
(I) The county agency shall deny or delay replacement issuances in cases in which available documentation indicates the AG's request for replacement appears to be fraudulent.
(J) The AG shall be informed of its right to a fair hearing to contest the denial or delay of a replacement issuance in accordance with Chapter 5101:6-2 of the Administrative Code. Replacements shall not be made while the denial or delay is being appealed unless the county agency reverses its decision.
(K) Replacing issuances lost in the mail or stolen prior to receipt by the AG
County agencies shall comply with the following procedures in replacing issuances reported lost in the mail or stolen prior to receipt by the AG.
(1) Determine if the benefits were validly issued, if they were actually mailed, if sufficient time has elapsed for delivery or if they were returned in the mail. "Sufficient time for delivery or return in the mail" shall be three working days: the date the benefits are mailed and the next two working days.
(2) Determine, to the extent possible, the validity of the request for a replacement. This includes determining whether the original issuance has been returned to the county agency.
(3) Issue a replacement if the AG is eligible.
(4) Take other action, such as correcting the address on the master issuance file, warranted by the reported nondelivery.
(L) Replacing issuances after receipt by the AG
Upon receiving a request for replacement of an issuance reported as stolen or destroyed after receipt by the AG, the county agency shall determine if the issuance was validly issued. The county agency shall also comply with applicable provisions of paragraphs (D), (E), (F), (G), and (H) of this rule, as well as the following procedures for each type of replacement.
(1) Destroyed benefits and destroyed food
Prior to replacing destroyed benefits, or destroyed food purchased with food assistance benefits, the county agency shall determine that the destruction occurred in an AG misfortune or disaster, such as, but not limited to, a fire or flood. This shall be verified through a collateral contact, documentation from a community agency including, but not limited to, the fire department or the red cross, or a home visit. The county agency shall provide replacements of benefits and/or food in the actual amount of the loss, but not exceeding one month's allotment, unless the exception in paragraph (F) of this rule applies.
(2) Benefits lost or stolen after receipt
AGs cannot receive a replacement for benefits lost or stolen after receipt.
(M) Documentation and reconciliation
The county agency shall document in the AG's case file each request for replacement, the date, the reason, and whether or not the replacement was provided. This information may be recorded exclusively on the JFS 07222. The county agency shall maintain, a record of the replacements granted to the AG, the reason, the month, and whether the replacement was countable as defined in paragraph (E)(4) of this rule. The record may be a case action sheet maintained in the case file, notations on the master issuance file, if readily accessible, or a document maintained solely for this purpose. At a minimum, the system shall be able to identify benefits not received in, or stolen from the mail, and replacement issuances which are not subject to a replacement limit.
(N) Further action on replacement issuances
On at least a monthly basis, the county agency shall report to the appropriate office of the postal inspection service all benefits reported as stolen or lost in the mail. The county agency shall assist the postal service during any investigation thereof and shall, upon written request, supply the postal service with copies of the authorization documents and a copy of the JFS 07222. The county agency shall establish a claim, where it appears the AG has signed authorization documents and received both the original and replacement issuances; and when it is determined that an AG received or may have received both the original and replacement allotments, the county agency shall refer the matter to the agency's investigation unit for additional action.
Refer to Chapter 5101:6-2 of the Administrative Code regarding notice requirements.
(P) Intercounty replacements: benefits or destroyed food
If an AG that has recently moved from one county to another requests a replacement of benefits or food destroyed in a misfortune or disaster, both county agencies shall cooperate in determining whether replacement is appropriate. If it is determined a replacement issuance is appropriate, the county of current residence shall issue the replacement.
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 05/20/2009 and 09/01/2014
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.54
Rule Amplifies: 329.04, 329.042, 5101.54
Prior Effective Dates: 6/2/80, 5/1/82, 9/27/82, 3/20/83, 2/1/95, 5/1/99, 05/22/04, 3/23/06