Chapter 5101:1-1 General Provisions

5101:1-1-01 Temporary assistance for needy families definitions.

The definitions set forth in this rule are contained in federal regulations related to the temporary assistance for needy families (TANF) program. There are also definitions included in this rule that are set forth in the Revised Code.

(A) "Adult" is defined in 45 CFR 260.30 (04/99) as an individual who is not a minor child, as defined in this rule.

(B) "Assistance" is defined in 45 CFR 260.31 (04/99) as set forth below:

(1) Assistance includes cash, payments, vouchers, and other forms of benefits designed to meet a family's ongoing basic needs for food, clothing, shelter, utilities, household goods, personal care items and general incidental items. Except as provided in paragraph (B)(2) of this rule, assistance includes supportive services such as transportation and child care provided to families who are not employed. It includes such benefits even when they are:

(a) Provided in the form of payments by a TANF agency or other agency on its behalf, to individual recipients; and

(b) Conditioned on participation in work experience or community service, or any other activity under 45 CFR 261.30 (04/99), which defines work activities as: unsubsidized employment, subsidized private-sector employment; subsidized public-sector employment; work experience if sufficient private-sector employment is not available; on-the-job training (OJT); job search and job readiness assistance; community service programs; vocational educational training; job skills training directly related to employment; education directly related to employment, in the case of a recipient who has not received a high school diploma or a certificate of high school equivalency; satisfactory attendance at secondary school or in a course of study leading to a certificate of general equivalence, in the case of a recipient who has not completed secondary school or received such a certificate; and providing child care services to an individual who is participating in a community service program.

(2) Assistance excludes:

(a) Nonrecurrent, short-term benefits that:

(i) Are designed to deal with a specific crisis situation or episode of need;

(ii) Are not intended to meet recurrent or ongoing needs; and

(iii) Will not extend beyond four months.

(b) Work subsidies - payments to employers or third parties to help cover the costs of employee wages, benefits, supervision and training;

(c) Supportive services such as child care and transportation provided to families who are employed;

(d) Refundable earned income tax credits;

(e) Contributions to, and distributions from individual development accounts (IDA);

(f) Services such as counseling, case management, peer support, child care information and referral, transitional services, job retention, job advancement, and other employment-related services that do not provide basic income support; and

(g) Transportation benefits provided under a job access or reverse commute project to an individual who is not otherwise receiving assistance.

(C) "Assistance group" means those persons potentially eligible or determined eligible to receive benefits together under one assistance group name. This was formerly referred to as the food assistance household. The assistance group is also known as the standard filing unit (SFU) in the CRIS-E system.

(D) "Case" means all assistance groups who live in the same household.

(E) "Cash assistance", when provided to Ohio works first (OWF) participants has the meaning set forth in paragraph (B) of this rule and in rule 5101:1-23-01 of the Administrative Code.

(F) "Commingled State TANF expenditures" means expenditures of state funds that are made within the TANF program and commingled with federal TANF funds.

(G) "Client registry information system enhanced (CRIS-E)" means the centralized statewide automated system that supports all eighty-eight county agencies.

(H) "Custodian" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means, an individual who has legal custody, as defined in section 2151.01.1 of the Revised Code, of a minor child or comparable status over a minor child created by a court of competent jurisdiction in another state.

(I) "Erroneous payment" as defined in section 5107.76 of the Revised Code and rule 5101:1-23-70 of the Administrative Code, means payments of cash assistance under OWF to assistance groups not eligible to receive the assistance, including assistance paid as a result of misrepresentation or fraud and assistance paid due to an error by a member of an assistance group or a county agency.

(J) "Fraudulent assistance" as defined in section 5101.83 of the Revised Code and rule 5101:1-23-75 of the Administrative Code, means assistance and services, including cash assistance provided under OWF established under Chapter 5107. of the Revised Code, or benefits and services provided under prevention, retention and contingency(PRC) as provided in Chapter 5108. of the Revised Code, to or on behalf of an assistance group that is provided as a result of fraud by a member of the assistance group, including an intentional violation of the program's requirement. Fraudulent assistance does not include assistance or services to or on behalf of an assistance group that is provided as a result of an error that is the fault of the county agency or the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS).

(K) "Guardian" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means, an individual that is granted authority by a probate court pursuant to Chapter 2111. of the Revised Code, or a court of competent jurisdiction in another state, to exercise parental rights over a minor child to the extent provided in the court's order and subject to residual parental rights of the minor child's parents.

(L) "Indian" as defined in Section 450b of Title 25 (12/00) of the United States Code, means a person who is a member of an Indian tribe.

(M) "Indian country", as defined in Section 1151 of Title 18 (05/76) of the United States Code, means:

(1) All land within the limits of any Indian reservation under the jurisdiction of the United States government, notwithstanding the issuance of any patent and, including rights-of-way running through the reservation;

(2) All dependent Indian communities within the borders of the United States whether within the original or subsequently acquired territory thereof, and whether within or without the limits of a state; and

(3) All Indian allotments, the Indian titles to which have not been extinguished, including rights-of-way running through the same.

(N) "Indian tribe", as defined in Section 450b of Title 25 of the United States Code, means any Indian tribe, band, nation, or other organized group or community, including any Alaska Native village or regional or village corporation as defined in or established pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (12/71) which is recognized as eligible for the special programs and services provided by the United States to Indians because of their status as Indians; except that the term "Indian tribe" means, with respect to the state of Alaska, only the Metlakatla Indian community of the Annette Islands Reserve and the following Alaska Native regional nonprofit corporations:

(1) Arctic Slope Native association;

(2) Kawerak, Inc.;

(3) Maniilaq association;

(4) Association of village council presidents;

(5) Tanana chiefs council;

(6) Cook Inlet tribal council;

(7) Bristol Bay Native association;

(8) Aleutian and Pribilof Island association;

(9) Chugachmuit;

(10) Tlingit Haida central council;

(11) Kodiak Area Native association; and

(12) Copper River Native association.

(O) "Indian Tribal Organization" or "tribal organization" as defined in Section 405b of Title 25 of the United States Code means, the recognized governing body of any Indian tribe; any legally established organization of Indians which is controlled, sanctioned, or chartered by such governing body or which is democratically elected by the adult members of the Indian community to be served by such organization and which includes the maximum participation of Indians in all phases of its activities provided that in any case where a contract is let or grant made to an organization to perform services benefiting more than one Indian tribe, the approval of each such Indian tribe shall be the prerequisite to the letting or making of such contract or grant.

(P) "Individual Development Account (IDA)" as defined in 45 CFR 263.20 (04/99) means an account established by or for an individual who is eligible for assistance under the TANF program, to allow the individual to accumulate funds for specific purposes. The funds in an IDA account must be disregarded in determining eligibility for, or the amount of, assistance in any federal means-tested programs.

(Q) "Minor child" as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 means an individual who:

(1) Is not eighteen years of age; or

(2) Who has not turned nineteen years of age and is a full-time student in a secondary school (or the equivalent level of vocational or technical training).

(R) "Minor head of household" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means a minor child who is either of the following:

(1) Is married, at least six months pregnant and a member of an assistance group that does not include an adult; or

(2) Is married and is a parent of a child included in the same assistance group that does not include an adult.

(S) "Ohio Works First (OWF)" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means the program established by section 5107.03 of the Revised Code. OWF is Ohio's temporary assistance for needy families (TANF) program. OWF is a program that provides time-limited cash assistance, as defined in paragraph (B)(1) of this rule, to eligible families.

(T) "Payment standard" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means the amount specified in rules adopted under section 5107.05 of the Revised Code that is the maximum amount of cash assistance an assistance group may receive under OWF from state and federal funds.

(U) "Prevention, Retention and Contingency (PRC)" as defined in Chapter 5108. of the Revised Code means the program established under Chapter 5108. of the Revised Code and funded in part with federal TANF funds to provide non-cash benefits and services, as defined in paragraph (B)(2) of this rule, that individuals need to overcome immediate barriers to achieving or maintaining self sufficiency and personal responsibility.

(V) Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) is a United States federal law as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 , or Public Law 104-193 (08/96). PRWORA instituted TANF.

(W) "Specified relative" as defined in section 5107.02 of the Revised Code means the following individuals who are age eighteen and older:

(1) The following individuals related by blood or adoption;

(a) Grandparents, including grandparents with the prefix "great", "great-great", or "great-great-great";

(b) Siblings;

(c) Aunts, uncles, nephews, and nieces, including such relatives with the prefix "great", "great-great", "grand", or "great-grand"; and

(d) First cousins and first cousins once removed.

(2) Stepparents and stepsiblings; and

(3) Spouses and former spouses of individuals named in paragraphs ( W)(1) and ( W)(2) of this rule.

(X) "State TANF expenditures" as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 means the expenditure of state funds within the TANF program.

(Y) "Supplemental security income (SSI)" means cash payments made under the authority of Title XVI of the Social Security Act, as amended, to the aged, blind, and disabled; or section 1616(a) of the Social Security Act.

(Z) "Supplemental security income (SSI) recipient" means a person who receives SSI payments.

(AA) "Temporary assistance for needy families (TANF)" as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 is a block grant program to help move recipients into work and turn welfare into a program of temporary assistance. Under the welfare reform legislation of 1996, TANF replaced the old welfare programs known as the aid to families with dependent children (AFDC) program, the job opportunities and basic skills training (JOBS) program, and the emergency assistance (EA) program.

(BB) "TANF Program" as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 means a state program of family assistance operated by an eligible state under its state TANF plan.

(CC) "Title IV-A" as defined in 45 CFR 260.30 means the title and part of the Social Security Act (08/96) that now includes TANF, but previously included the now obsolete aid to families with dependent children (AFDC) and emergency assistance (EA) programs.

(DD) "Title IV-A program" as defined in section 5101.80 of the Revised Code means all of the following that are funded in part with funds provided under the TANF block grant:

(1) The OWF program established under Chapter 5107. of the Revised Code;

(2) The PRC program established under Chapter 5108. of the Revised Code;

(3) A program established by the general assembly or an executive order issued by the governor that is administered or supervised by the ODJFS; and

(4) A component of a Title IV-A program identified in paragraphs (Y)(1) to (Y)(3) of this rule, that the Title IV-A state plan identifies as a component.

(5) The kinship permanency incentive program created under section 5101.802 of the Revised Code.

(6) The Title IV-A demonstration program created under section 5101.803 of the Revised Code.

(EE) "Work eligible individual" as defined in 45 CFR 261.2 (02/08) means the following:

(1) An adult (or minor child head-of-household) receiving assistance under TANF or a separate state program or a non-recipient parent living with a child receiving such assistance unless the parent is:

(a) A minor parent and not the head-of-household;

(b) A non-citizen who is ineligible to receive assistance due to his or her immigration status; or

(c) At state option on a case-by-case basis, a recipient of supplemental security income (SSI) benefits or aid to the aged, blind or disabled in the territories.

(2) The term excludes:

(a) A parent providing care for a disabled family member living in the home, provided that there is medical documentation to support the need for the parent to remain in the home to care for the disabled family member;

(b) At state option on a case-by-case basis, a parent who is a recipient of social security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits; and

(c) An individual in a family receiving maintenance-of-effort funded assistance under an approved tribal TANF program, unless the state includes the tribal family in calculating work participation rates, as permitted under 45 CFR 261.25 (06/06).

(FF) "Work participation rate" means the minimum federal work participation rates pursuant to 45 CFR 260.21 (10/08). The minimum federal work participation rates are ninety per cent for two-parent assistance groups and fifty per cent for all family assistance groups.

Effective: 10/01/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 06/29/2011 and 07/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.05 , Section 5 of Amended Substitute Senate Bill 238 of the 126th General Assembly
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/2002, 8/29/2003 (Emer.), 11/1/2003, 9/29/2006 (Emer.), 12/29/2006, 10/1/2008

5101:1-1-03 Disclosure of recipient information, nondiscrimination, and treatment of information received from the internal revenue service and social security administration.

(A) Confidential records All information and records concerning a recipient of disability financial assistance (DFA) pursuant to Chapter 5115. of the Revised Code, Ohio works first (OWF) pursuant to Chapter 5107. of the Revised Code, and prevention, retention and contingency (PRC) pursuant to Chapter 5108. of the Revised Code are confidential. No information or records regarding applicants, recipients, or former recipients of any of the programs listed in this paragraph is to be released to anyone except as provided in sections 5101.27 and 5101.28 of the Revised Code, including an entity administering a program assisting needy individuals with the costs of public utility services or as otherwise delineated in this rule pursuant to section 5101.30 of the Revised Code.

(B) Allowable disclosure of information In accordance with sections 5101.27 , 5101.28 and 5101.30 of the Revised Code , recipient information and records for any of the programs identified in paragraph (A) of this rule may be released to the following entities identified in paragraphs (B)(1) to (B) (9) of this rule. However, only the minimum information or records necessary to fulfill the need for the sharing of information shall be released.

(1) A provider of services or assistance connected with the programs identified in paragraph (A) of this rule. Access to information under this paragraph is limited to information that is essential for the provider to render or bill for services or assistance . Providers shall not use this information except for the purpose set out in this paragraph and are subject to penalties set out in section 5101.99 of the Revised Code for unauthorized use of the information.

(2) Any private contractor, grantee, or other state or county entity, performing administrative or other duties on behalf of the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) or a county agency when in compliance with paragraphs (B) (2)(a) to (B) (2)(c) of this rule. Access under this paragraph includes but is not limited to exchange of information pursuant to section 307.987 of the Revised Code. Information is limited only to information needed for completion of the administrative or other duties on behalf of ODJFS or the county agency:

(a) There must be a signed, written agreement with the contractor, grantee, or entity, that establishes the purpose and scope of duties to be performed for ODJFS or the county agency.

(b) The agreement shall contain language that the contractor, grantee, or entity shall not use the information received pursuant to the agreement for purposes other than those set out in the written agreement.

(c) The agreement shall include language which establishes that the contractor, grantee, or entity is bound by relevant Ohio confidentiality laws and ODJFS rules; and, that disclosure of the information by the contractor, grantee, or entity in a manner not authorized by the Revised Code or Administrative Code is a breach of the contract and subject to penalties set forth in section 5101.99 of the Revised Code.

(3) Any state licensing or certification authority while performing its statutory duties of conducting or assisting with investigations, prosecution or civil or criminal proceedings against medicaid providers, provided that any such licensing or certification authority agrees to be bound by the same rules and regulations regarding recipient confidentiality that binds ODJFS. To ensure agreement of confidentiality, these information requests and responses will be conducted solely between the requesting authority and the appropriate office within ODJFS.

(4) A county child support enforcement agency when requesting relevant information needed to secure child support pursuant to rule 5101:1-3-10 of the Administrative Code.

(5) State and local offices of women, infants and children , child and family health services , and the children with medical handicaps program . The information shared is limited to eligibility information for specific individuals or assistance groups receiving these services .

(6) A public children services agency (PCSA) when the county agency is to report known or suspected instances of child abuse and neglect of a child receiving OWF, PRC or DFA or when the PCSA needs information in order to conduct an assessment or investigation of a report of alleged child abuse or neglect, as set forth in rule 5101:2-33-28 of the Administrative Code. Instances of abuse and neglect situations exist when a child experiences physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, or exploitation, or negligent treatment or maltreatment under circumstances which indicate that the child's health or welfare is threatened.

(7) To the extent permitted by federal law, the ODJFS and county agencies shall provide information, except information directly related to the receipt of medical assistance or medical services, regarding recipients of public assistance under a program administered by the ODJFS or a county agency pursuant to Chapter 5107., 5108., or 5115. of the Revised Code to law enforcement agencies upon request for the purposes of investigations, prosecutions, and criminal and civil proceedings that are within the scope of the law enforcement agencies' official duties.

(8) Information about a recipient shall be exchanged, obtained, or shared only if ODJFS, the county agency, or law enforcement agency requesting the information gives sufficient information to specifically identify the recipient. In addition to the recipient's name, identifying information may include the recipient's current or last known address, social security number, other identifying number, age, gender, physical characteristics, any information specified in an agreement entered into under section 5101.28 of the Revised Code, or any information considered appropriate by ODJFS or the county agency.

(C) Requirements regarding protection of the recipient's right to control personal data

The following requirements must be explained at the time of application for assistance or services and are included to protect the recipient's right to control personal data.

(1) Whenever a recipient of any of the programs identified in paragraph (A) of this rule is asked to supply personal data to the county agency or ODJFS, the legal requirements for providing or not providing such data must be explained to him.

(2) Upon the request of any recipient of any of the programs identified in paragraph (A) of this rule, the county agency must make all data collected about that individual available to the individual. Medical, psychiatric or psychological information may not be released to the individual or his legal guardian if the county agency has reason to believe that its release may have an adverse effect on the individual.

If the county agency has reason to believe that the release of medical, psychiatric or psychological information may have an adverse effect, the county agency shall release this information to a physician, psychiatrist or psychologist designated by the individual. Once the individual provides expressed and informed consent, the county agency will send this information to the designated medical provider. The medical provider will then determine whether the information should be disclosed to the recipient.

In addition, the agency must supply an interpretation of the data if it is not readily understandable. If the individual feels that the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the individual has the right to include additional information in the individual's files.

(3) Upon any request for individual data through compulsory legal process, the recipient of any program identified in paragraph (A) of this rule, must be immediately informed of such request. In addition, the department must inform the court of the statutory and regulatory provisions against disclosure of information, if state or federal law precludes the release of the information. If the court still seeks the information, and if the information is not protected by any other privilege recognized by law, the county agency will furnish the specified information to the court itself along with ODJFS policies for safeguarding that information. At the same time, the county agency must notify the individual that the information has been furnished to the court and must supply duplicate copies to that individual of the information so furnished.

(4) Pursuant to division (D) of section 5101.27 of the Revised Code, ODJFS and the county agency may release information about a recipient of any of the programs listed in paragraph (A) of this rule, if the recipient gives voluntary, written consent in compliance with section 5101.27 of the Revised Code.

(D) Nondiscrimination

The county agency is responsible for providing assistance without discrimination on account of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability, age or political beliefs, in a manner consistent with the all federal and state laws relating to non-discrimination.

(E) Release of information

A signed JFS 07341 "Applicant/Recipient Authorization for Release of Information" (rev. 04/2004) shall be obtained whenever the county agency requests information from a third party. The county agency shall use the JFS 03397 "Authorization for the Release or Use of Protected Health Information (PHI)" (rev. 07/2003) when the information is medical in nature or the JFS 06907 "LEAP-Learning, Earning, and Parenting Program School Information Release Form" (rev. 8/ 2003) when requesting attendance and educational information for LEAP program participants. A copy of any signed release must be included in the individual's file.

(F) Confidentiality requirements for information from the social security administration (SSA)

(1) The SSA sends information to the ODJFS about retirement, survivors and disability insurance (RSDI) and supplemental security income (SSI) beneficiaries who are an applicant for or recipients of any of the programs listed in paragraph (A) of this rule. The SSA limits use and disclosure of this SSA information.

(2) The Privacy Act of 1974, PL 93-579, (12/74), 88 Stat. 1896, 5 U.S.C. 522a, allows SSA to release information to ODJFS and the county agency without a release of information from the beneficiary only as long as the information is for a "routine use" and for specified programs. Every use or disclosure of SSA information which is not routine or is not for an approved, specified program requires the prior written permission of the beneficiary or the SSA, respectively.

(a) The routine uses and approved programs for RSDI information obtained from SSA are: to determine eligibility for and administer OWF, DFA, food assistance, Title XX social services, Title IV-E, child supportand energy assistance.

(b) The routine uses and approved programs for SSI benefits obtained from SSA are: to determine eligibility for and administer OWF, food assistance, DFA, energy assistance, Title XX social services, Title IV-E, child supportand interim assistance.

(G) Disclosure, confidentiality, and physical safeguarding of SSA and internal revenue service (IRS) information

(1) Whenever ODJFS or the county agency discloses SSA information received from the SSA to someone who is not an employee of ODJFS or a county agency, it must do so only for a routine use of an approved program and must disclose only the information needed to accomplish the purpose of the routine use.

(2) ODJFS may disclose SSA information to another state agency, provided it is for routine use for an approved program and only the needed information is disclosed.

(3) ODJFS and/or the county agency must keep a record every time they disclose information received from SSA to anyone who is not an employee of ODJFS or a county agency, even if the disclosure is for a routine use.

(a) The required record of disclosure of SSA information must be kept in the individual case record and also in a central county agency file.

(b) The case record notation and the central file must contain the date of disclosure, the information disclosed, the purpose of the disclosure, and the person to whom the information was disclosed. For the case record, the county agency must enter the notation about the disclosure. For the central file, the county agency must maintain separate records, for each source of data disclosed.

(c) The record of disclosure must be retained for five years or the life of the application, whichever is longer. The disclosure records are subject to inspection by the SSA.

(4) The IRS sends unearned income information received from 1099 forms filed with that agency to ODJFS regarding applicants and recipients of any of the programs listed in paragraph (A) of this rule.

(5) 26 U.S.C. 6103 (1/07), allows the disclosure of tax return information to federal, state and local agencies by the IRS for use in their temporary assistance for needy families and food assistance programs. The return information is disclosed solely for the purpose of, and to the extent necessary in, determining eligibility for, or the correct amount of benefits under the specified programs.

(6) IRS return information may not be disclosed to, exchanged with, or utilized by any other state agency. ODJFS and county agency employees who are entitled to access tax return information generally must not disclose this information to any party outside the agency other than the taxpayer to whom the information relates or the taxpayer's duly appointed representative who has the explicit authority to obtain tax return information.

(7) To the extent that disclosure of IRS information is necessary to verify eligibility for and the correct amount of benefits, including past benefits, such disclosure may be made only when there is no other means of verifying the unearned income information, and only to the extent necessary to verify the unearned income information.

(a) All ODJFS and county agency employees with access to IRS return information shall have disclosure awareness training for safeguarding requirements and must be advised on an annual basis of IRS penalty provisions.

(b) A permanent system of standardized record keeping must be maintained by the county agency which documents requests for, and disclosure of return information. If redisclosure is authorized, the information disclosed outside the agency must be recorded on a separate list which reflects to whom the disclosure was made, what was disclosed, why and when it was disclosed.

(8) ODJFS and the county agency must physically protect SSA and IRS information from unauthorized access. The physical record number of SSA and IRS information required to be safeguarded include, but are not limited to, the following:

(a) Benefit earnings exchange record information which contains federal wage information obtained from the SSA master earnings file;

(b) IRS information return master file which contains returns filed by payers of income such as dividends, interest and retirement income.

(9) ODJFS and the county agency must:

(a) Limit access to the data to only those employees and officials who need it to perform their official duties in connection with the approved programs.

(b) Store data in an area that is physically safe from access by unauthorized persons.

(c) Store , process and use magnetic tapes, screen prints and any electronic data in any computer system in such a way that information cannot be retrieved by unauthorized persons.

(d) Advise all personnel who will have access to the data of the confidential nature of the information, the safeguards required, and the criminal and civil sanctions for noncompliance contained in federal and state statutes.

(e) Permit the SSA and internal revenue service to make onsite inspections to ensure that adequate safeguards are being maintained.

(f) Ensure that during interactive interviews confidential information is not exposed to any individual who is not the subject of the confidential information.

Effective: 10/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 06/17/2010 and 10/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.27 , 5101.28 , 5101.30 , 5101.99 , 5107.05 , 5108.02 , 5115.04
Rule Amplifies: 5101.27 , 5101.28 , 5101.30 , 5101.572
Prior Effective Dates: 1/1/74, 1/1/76, 1/1/83, 10/1/84 (Emer.), 12/27/84, 7/1/85 (Emer.), 9/29/85; 1/18/86, 8/1/86 (Emer.), 10/3/86, 10/1/88 (Emer.), 12/20/88, 7/14/89 (Emer.), 10/1/89, 1/1/90 (Emer.), 3/22/90, 4/7/90, 10/1/90, 10/10/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 1/1/93, 1/1/94 (Emer.), 1/30/94, 1/1/96 (Emer.), 10/11/96 (Emer.), 11/1/96, 1/1/97, 7/1/97, 10/1/97 (Emer.), 12/30/97, 7/1/97, 7/1/98, 11/1/98, 7/1/99, 11/1/02, 4/1/03, 7/1/05

5101:1-1-13 Assistance group records, case records, retention and transfer of records.

(A) What is an assistance group record?

An "assistance group record" is a collection of hard copy and on-line electronic documents to support that the county agency has determined the assistance group's eligibility for the Ohio works first (OWF), disability financial assistance (DFA), refugee cash assistance (RCA), and/or prevention, retention, and contingency (PRC) programs. The assistance group record also contains information to support program eligibility and participation requirements, that the grant has been computed correctly, and that potential income and resources have been explored. The documents in the assistance group record are needed to facilitate a third-party review. The documents in the assistance group record include, but are not limited to the following:

(1) Application forms, reapplication forms, self-sufficiency contracts, appraisal and assessment forms.

(2) Summary of recipient and agency contacts.

(3) Referrals to social services.

(4) Copies of county and state hearing notices and records. State hearing notices and records are maintained by the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) in accordance with paragraph (F) of rule 5101:6-7-01 of the Administrative Code.

(5) Documentation of OWF work participation.

(6) Correspondence from the county agency to the assistance group and from the assistance group to the county.

(7) Verification such as wage reports, ODJFS state verification and exchange system (SVES) verification and birth records.

(B) What is a case record?

The case record is a collection of assistance group records for each assistance group included on the same JFS 07200, "Request for Cash, Food, and Medical Assistance" (rev. 12/2012), printed copy of information (PCI), and "Prevention, Retention, and Contingency (PRC) Application."

(C) What are the retention requirements for the records?

Assistance group records are subject to the retention procedures set forth in rule 5101:9-9-21 of the Administrative Code.

(D) What are the requirements for transferring records between counties?

When an assistance group moves to another county within the state, the assistance group record shall be transferred to the county to which the assistance group has moved. If the entire household moves to another county, the case record shall be transferred. As the assistance group and case records are in both on-line electronic and hard copy form, the following requirements apply for transferring the records:

(1) Electronic records

On-line record transfers in the client registry information system enhanced (CRIS-E) system, and other electronic records shall be transferred by the county agency as soon as possible, but no later than five working days from the date the county agency became aware of the address change.

(2) Hard-copy records

The hard-copy record shall be transferred as soon as possible but no later than fifteen calendar days from the date the county agency became aware of the address change. The county agency sending the hard-copy records shall complete the JFS 03900, "Notice of Intercounty Transfer" (rev. 05/2010) and send the completed form with the hard-copy records. The sending county agency shall also retain a copy of the completed JFS 03900.

Effective: 02/01/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 06/01/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5101.49 , 5107.05 , 5115.03
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05 , 5115.03
Prior Effective Dates: 1/1/74, 11/1/74, 3/1/82, 9/2/82, 3/6/85 (Emer.), 6/10/85, 7/1/85, 1/1/88 (Emer.), 3/21/88, 7/1/88 (Emer.), 8/1/88 (Emer.), 9/25/88, 10/15/88, 7/1/91 (Emer.), 9/15/91, 10/1/91 (Emer.), 12/20/91, 1/1/93, 5/1/93, 7/1/96, 10/11/97 (Emer.), 12/30/97, 7/1/98, 7/1/99, 7/1/01, 11/1/02, 12/1/06, 6/1/10, 7/1/05, 6/1/10

5101:1-1-14 [Rescinded]Intercounty transfers.

Effective: 06/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/08/2010
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.80 , 5107.02 , 5107.05 , 5115.05
Rule Amplifies: 5101.80 , 5107.05 , 5108.10 , 5115.05
Prior Effective Dates: 11/1/74, 7/1/85, 8/1/88 (emer.), 10/15/88, 7/1/91
(emer.), 9/15/91, 1/1/93, 5/1/93, 7/1/98, 7/1/99, 7/1/01,
11/1/02, 07/01/05

5101:1-1-36 Income and eligibility verification system (IEVS) program.

(A) Section 1137 of the Social Security Act (5/2006) mandates that state agencies administering federally funded public assistance programs develop and implement an income and eligibility verification system (IEVS). In Ohio, IEVS contains income and benefit information from the following sources:

(1) The Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS), office of unemployment compensation, bureau of program services; and

(2) The social security administration (SSA).

(B) Under the IEVS program, the match data will be furnished to the county agency. The county agency will have a forty-five day to one hundred twenty day processing time frame to receive the match data, to compare the match information to the information in the assistance group (AG) record, to obtain verification when applicable, to determine eligibility, and to initiate appropriate corrective action. The county agency shall take action to review and process the information immediately upon receipt.

(C) Integration of IEVS into the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E) system

(1) All IEVS functions of ODJFS are provided through CRIS-E. The IEVS CRIS-E alert processing instruction guide located at http://innerweb.odjfs.state.oh.us/ofs/BPI/00FCfc.shtml provides the procedure for the processing of match data reviews.

(2) The regular matching of social security numbers of assistance group members is reflected through the IEVS system, which consists of the following three CRIS-E components:

(a) Data exchange;

(b) Compliance tracking; and

(c) Reporting.

(D) Specific sources of IEVS matches

Under the IEVS system, ODJFS will regularly match social security numbers of applicants and AG members with data from the following source agencies:

(1) ODJFS - wage records.

(a) The ODJFS, unemployment compensation bureau of program services acts as the state's wage information collection agency (SWICA). Section 4141.20 of the Revised Code requires employers to report quarterly earnings of all employees by the last day of the month following the end of each calendar quarter. ODJFS will match all Ohio works first (OWF) and food assistance applicants and AG members against the SWICA files on a quarterly basis. Matches shall be displayed to the county agency as soon as they are received.

(b) The county agency shall treat information received from this source as a lead to possible employment. Verification of earnings must be obtained from the employer or AG member before benefits may be affected.

(2) ODJFS -unemployment compensation records.

(a) ODJFS will compare all OWF and food assistance applicants and AG members against the ODJFS files on a weekly basis. Matches shall be displayed in CRIS-E to the county agency as soon as they are received.

(b) Information received from this source should be considered verified unless the client statement and/or case record fails to support the accuracy of the information.

(3) SSA benefit earnings exchange record (BEER).

(a) SSA obtains wage records from employers on an annual basis. Twice a month ODJFS transmits a request through the SSA's BEER for all new OWF and food assistance applicants and AG members. This data is included in the master file at that agency. Whenever information is added to the master file, it is matched against all other data in the file. The SSA processes the BEER request twice a month and returns the matched file information to ODJFS for review.

(b) The BEER match includes out of state and federal employers. The federal wage records match includes employers who do not report to SWICA. Matches from this source will be displayed in CRIS-E to the county agency as soon as they are received and are to be considered as a lead that the county agency shall verify before benefits may be affected.

(c) Employment information received from this source is considered as a lead towards possible current employment. Data verification shall be obtained before the county agency may initiate any adjustment to the AG case.

(4) Retirement survivors disability insurance (RSDI) and supplemental security income (SSI) benefits

(a) SSA provides information on social security (SS) and SSI benefits of individual public assistance participants. The ODJFS state verification and exchange system (SVES) provides electronic interface with the SSA. The interface allows the transfer of SS and SSI benefit information from the SSA.

(b) Beneficiary and SSI entitlement information is considered verified. Dual entitlement information should be verified when, or if, the AG record does not support the accuracy of the information.

(E) Processing time frames

(1) Federal regulations require the county agency to process IEVS matches in forty-five days.

(2) A county agency may only exceed the forty-five day time period on up to twenty per cent of its reviews, provided that the reason for the delay is due to nonreceipt of verifications, and provided that the review is completed by the next case action. During the forty-five and one hundred twenty day periods, the county agency shall review the AG record, contact the AG, obtain verification when necessary, determine eligibility and make appropriate case adjustments.

(3) Once the county agency completes the IEVS match process, the results will be recorded in CRIS-E history.

(4) When the county agency determines that an IEVS match displayed is for an AG whose case record is now active in another county and/or is delinquent, the county agency shall refer to the CRIS-E transfer procedure.

(F) IEVS priority levels

(1) County agencies are assigned IEVS match information in the CRIS-E system with one of two priority levels: high or low . These priority levels are based upon ODJFS determined error prone factors.

High priority matches shall be reviewed and completed by county agencies within forty-five days.

(2) Low priority matches are issued to county agency for informational purposes only. These matches are available for a minimum of one hundred eighty days. The county agency will not be required to follow-up or report the results of these reviews. Low priority alerts will be systematically inactivated every one-hundred eighty to two hundred days.

(G) IEVS safeguarding requirements and disclosure of match information

(1) Match information which contains federal tax data must be protected from disclosure to unauthorized persons. Federal tax information (FTI) remains tax information even after it has been verified. The determining factor is the source of the information.

(a) If the source is the social security administration or some other federal agency authorized to release FTI, this information is tax information.

(b) If the source is the individual involved, an authorized representative of the individual or entity, or a third party (from their records), the information is not considered tax information.

(2) If the individual, or payer institution, verifies by writing the information on a separate document, the information is not tax information. Therefore, it is possible to have two documents with the same information and, depending on the source of the information, one document shall require safeguarding while the other shall not.

(3) Computer screen printouts or copies of letters mailed or received regarding FTI shall be safeguarded and are subject to the prescribed record retention schedule and safeguarding procedures as outlined in rules 5101:9-9-21 and 5101:9-9-25 of the Administrative Code.

(4) SSA federal tax information can be commingled within the AG case record, but the AG case record must then be safeguarded in its entirety, clearly labeled to indicate that SSA FTI is included.

(5) FTI must be logged and tracked so that the location of the FTI is known at all times.

(6) The IEVS match information may be disclosed only under the following circumstances:

(a) Any IEVS match information may be given to the AG member who is the subject of the information;

(b) An assistance group member may be given social security administration (SSA) information about other members in the same assistance group if the information is needed in connection with determining eligibility for benefits. A JFS 07341 "Applicant/Recipient Authorization for Release of Information" (rev. 4/2004) form shall be signed by the individual for whom the information is requested. When there is a request to review the AG case file, a member of the AG or its currently authorized representative may have access to the information provided by the release. However, the county agency may withhold confidential information, such as the names of individuals who have disclosed information about the AG without the AG's knowledge, or the nature or status of pending criminal prosecutions;

(c) An AG member may be given tax return information if the individual is the taxpayer to whom the information relates;

(d) Tax return information may be given to the taxpayer's duly-appointed representative who has the explicit authority to obtain the tax return information if the disclosure is necessary to verify eligibility for benefits, including past benefits, and such disclosure may be made only when there is no other means of verifying the unearned income information. A signed JFS 07341 shall also be required from the taxpayer; and

(e) IEVS match information may be given to another state or local agency or official who needs the information for the purpose of determining eligibility or investigating alleged or suspected fraud or abuse for the programs as delineated in rule 5101:1-1-03 of the Administrative Code. This includes court officials, prosecutors, and investigators.

(H) Records of disclosure of IEVS match information

(1) ODJFS and the county agency shall keep a record of any disclosure of IEVS information, including IEVS match information, to any person or agency who is not an employee of ODJFS or the county agency. The record of the disclosure must be retained for five years or the active life of the application, whichever is longer.

(2) The eligibility determiner must note in the AG record any disclosure to any person (other than the AG member), agency, or official who is not an employee of a county agency or ODJFS. The county agency must record all such disclosures in its central file of IEVS information disclosures. The record of disclosure must contain a description of the information disclosed, the date of the disclosure, the identity of the persons or agencies to whom the information was disclosed, and the purpose of the disclosure.

(3) The county agency should refer to rule 5101:9-9-21 of the Administrative Code for closed IEVS documentation procedure.

(I) Required county agency action.

(1) Upon receipt of an IEVS match, the county agency shall:

(a) Refer to the IEVS CRIS-E alert processing instruction guide.

(b) Regard the match information (unless SSA beneficiary and SSI entitlement or unemployment compensation) as a lead indicating the possible receipt of income to an AG member, not as verification.

(c) Determine if the IEVS information is consistent with the information already provided by the AG. When the AG case record does not have information which resolves the IEVS match, the county agency may contact the AG.

(2) When a county agency contacts an AG for verification of income, the county agency shall give the AG ten calendar days to submit verification. The request for verification shall also state that if the AG fails to provide the information and/or contact the county agency, assistance may be terminated. At the end of the time period, if there has been no contact by the AG or if there has been a refusal to provide verification, prior notice shall be sent proposing termination because the county agency is unable to determine continued eligibility. Since the information from the IEVS match does not coincide with the information from the AG case record, the county agency shall verify the match information. It is the responsibility of the AG to provide the information necessary to determine eligibility and to clarify any incomplete, inconsistent, or contradictory information received.

(3) If the AG agrees to cooperate in providing the requested information but is unable to provide the information, the county agency shall obtain a JFS 07341 to forward to the third party who may have the information , such as an employer.

(4) Any adverse action resulting from information produced by a matching program shall be processed in accordance with Chapter 5101:6 of the Administrative Code.

(5) When the review of the IEVS match results in a determination that the benefit amounts issued were incorrect and should be increased or decreased accordingly, the county agency shall initiate at least one of the following:

(a) Ineligibility-terminate benefits or deny application;

(b) Overpayment-recover the overpayment; or

(c) Underpayment-issue the underpayment.

(6) When the review of the IEVS match results in the discovery of previously unknown employment, the county agency shall secure appropriate third-party resource forms.

(J) The IEVS match investigation

The county agency shall investigate the IEVS match using the following guidelines:

(1) The county agency shall not deny, delay, or discontinue benefits while waiting for information when other evidence establishes the AG's eligibility;

(2) The primary task of the IEVS match review is to check previous and current eligibility. The review also attempts to find and recover all overpayments whether they are AG error or agency error;

(3) The eligibility determiner's purpose in the IEVS match is to discover the facts of the AG's situation during the match period and to decide whether the AG received the correct amount of benefits; and

(4) Fraud investigation is an activity for the county agency benefit recovery unit and the county prosecuting attorney.

(K) IEVS reviews

ODJFS monitors the county agency IEVS activities by reviewing selected cases for timeliness, accuracy of the processing of alerts, and the safeguarding of IEVS information. Reviews are scheduled in each county agency a minimum of every three years.

Effective: 03/01/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/28/2012 and 03/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.02 , 5107.05
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05
Prior Effective Dates: 1/1/83, 12/1/86, 3/13/87 (Emer.), 5/4/87, 9/1/89 (Emer.), 11/30/89, 1/1/90 (Emer.), 4/1/90, 1/1/93, 9/1/94, 11/1/96, 7/1/98, 7/1/99, 7/1/00, 11/1/02 , 12/6/07

5101:1-1-40 Administrative subpoena. [Rescinded].

Rescinded eff 9-1-08

5101:1-1-50 Written declaration of citizenship/alien status and the use of the systematic alien verification for entitlements system.

Each individual who is not a citizen or national of the United States (U.S.) is required to provide a written declaration of alien status and provide documentation to support their alien status. The county department of job and family services (CDJFS) is required to confirm the authenticity of the documentation provided by the individual through the automated systematic alien verification for entitlements (SAVE) system.

(A) What is the written declaration of citizenship/alien status?

(1) Each individual applying for Ohio works first (OWF), prevention, retention and contingency (PRC) or refugee cash assistance (RCA) must provide a declaration in writing under penalty of perjury of the following:

(a) Whether or not the individual is a citizen or national of the U.S. or an alien in a satisfactory immigration status; and

(b) The status of all dependent children for whom assistance is requested.

(2) The written declaration of citizenship/alien status shall be considered met for all members of the assistance group when the adult, minor heads of household or authorized representative signs and dates the JFS 07200 "Request for Cash, Food, and Medical Assistance" (rev.12/2012) or the client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E) generated printed copy of information (PCI).

(3) Declarations on behalf of newborn children must be provided no later than the next scheduled reapplication. The declaration requirement is met by the assistance group member's signature on the PCI signed at the face-to-face reapplication interview or the JFS 07204 "Request To Reapply for Cash and Food Assistance" (rev. 6/2012) signed for a telephone interview.

(4) Any assistance group member who is not a U.S. citizen or national must provide documentation from the U.S. citizenship and immigration services (USCIS) of their current alien status.

(B) What documents must be provided by an individual who is not a citizen or national of the U.S?

(1) The following original documents are considered acceptable verification of alien status:

(a) Alien registration card;

(i) Alien registration cards normally have an alien registration number (A-number) referencing the individual's file at USCIS.

(ii) The A-number contains seven, eight or nine numerical digits preceded by the letter "A."

(iii) The A-number is unique to individuals.

(b) Marriage records or court orders indicating identity, immigration status or U.S. residence of the individual. These documents are not considered adequate proof of current immigration status, but may be used to verify alien status through the secondary verification process as set forth in paragraph (C)(1)(b) of this rule.

(2) If an individual claims to have lost the original documents or the documents expire, the CDJFS shall refer the individual to the local USCIS office to request new documents.

(3) Required documentation must be provided at application or when the alien status changes.

(C) How does the CDJFS verify the authenticity of the documents provided?

(1) There are two methods of verifying the documents provided as set forth in paragraph (B) of this rule:

(a) Initial or primary verification is used to provide alien status verification within seconds of inquiry. This verification is used for most applicants.

(b) Additional or secondary verification provides a more extensive validation if problems appear in the verification of alien status. Secondary verification is required in any of the following situations:

(i) The document appears counterfeit or altered.

(ii) The individual presents unfamiliar USCIS documentation, or a document indicating immigration status, but does not contain an A-number.

(iii) A document containing an A-number in the "A60 000 000" series.

(iv) A document containing an A-number in the "A80 000 000" series.

(v) When an individual has no immigration documentation and is hospitalized, medically disabled or can otherwise show good cause for the inability to present documentation, and securing such documentation constitutes an undue hardship.

(vi) When an individual presents a foreign passport and/or form I-94 "Arrival-Departure Record" (4/00) and the "Admission for Permanent Residence" endorsement is more than one year old.

(vii) When an automated check through the SAVE system returns with a response "institute additional verification" or when there is a material discrepancy between an individual's documentation and the record contained in the SAVE system.

(viii) When an individual claims lawful permanent (or conditional) resident status because they are a battered alien, a parent of a battered child(ren) or a victim of domestic violence.

(D) What is the SAVE system?

(1) The SAVE system is an information-sharing initiative allowing authorized staff to validate a noncitizen's immigration status by accessing USCIS data. The USCIS protects the individual's privacy in accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of 1952 and other applicable statutes. No consent for release of information is required to use SAVE.

(2) The CDJFS shall compare the information provided through the SAVE system with the documents provided by the individual. If the documentation matches in SAVE, the process is complete.

(3) SAVE does not determine eligibility for health care programs or provide information unrelated to an individual's immigration status. It does not replace the requirement for noncitizens to provide verification of their immigration status as set forth in paragraph (B) of this rule.

(E) How does the SAVE verification affect eligibility?

(1) No eligibility determination is delayed, denied, reduced or terminated solely because of pending SAVE verification.

(2) If an individual appears eligible with available USCIS documentation and all other program eligibility criteria are met, the CDJFS shall issue benefits to the assistance group while awaiting a response from USCIS.

(3) If a discrepancy exists after receipt of information from the SAVE system, the CDJFS shall send prior notice of adverse action to the assistance group in accordance with the provisions set forth in rule 5101:6-2-04 of the Administrative Code.

(4) The provisions set forth in rules 5101:1-23-70 and 5101:1-5-50 of the Administrative Code are applicable when payments have been erroneously issued.

(F) What is the process to request verification manually?

(1) In some instances, verification through a manual process may be required if the SAVE system is unable to provide determinations of alien status in a timely manner.

(2) The manual verification process is required when the automated check or initial inspection of an individual's documentation, or information provided from such documentation, reveals material discrepancies.

(3) Material discrepancies are defined as obvious irregularities in name, date of birth or country of birth. A slight difference in the spelling of a name is not normally a material difference.

(4) To conduct a manual verification the CDJFS shall mail the following documents to USCIS:

(a) The "Document Verification Request" (G-845) and/or the "Document Verification Request Supplement" (G-845S).

(i) The G-845 is used to verify the status of an alien for official purposes of a government agency not participating in the SAVE program.

(ii) The G-845S is submitted in conjunction with the G-845 to request verification and cannot be used alone.

(b) A copy of the individual's original immigration documentation.

Effective: 02/01/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 06/01/2014
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.05
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05
Prior Effective Dates: 6/1/93, 10/1/95, 7/1/98, 3/1/02, 4/1/04 , 6/1/09

5101:1-1-90 Ohio works first: state tax refund offset program.

(A) What is the state tax refund offset program?

(1) The state tax refund offset program allows the offset of Ohio income tax refunds to collect delinquent aid to dependent children, temporary assistance to needy families, and Ohio works first (OWF) program overpayment claims.

(2) Periodically, but no less than annually, the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) certifies to the Ohio department of taxation a list of applicable debtors.

(3) The Ohio department of taxation offsets the certified debts against income tax refunds payable to the debtors, and notifies the debtors and ODJFS of offsets which have been made.

(B) When is a claim referred to the state tax refund offset program?

To refer a claim to the state tax refund offset program, the following criteria must be met:

(1) The claim must be past due. A claim becomes past due when a cash payment has not been received for ninety consecutive days on an established overpayment. An established overpayment is one in which an adult responsible for repayment of the claim was issued a demand notice.

(2) The claim must be legally enforceable.

(a) The claim must be properly established by electronic records or paper documents held by the county agency as set forth in section 5107.76 of the Revised Code and rule 5101:1-23-70 of the Administrative Code. The evidence shall include verification that the assistance group was notified of hearing rights on the claim as set forth in rule 5101:6-2-20 of the Administrative Code.

(b) The claim has not been discharged in bankruptcy for the referred individual, nor is there a bankruptcy stay in effect for the referred individual.

(3) The claim must be at least twenty-five dollars or more.

(4) The date of the initial demand letter must be within ten years of the date on which the debt is certified to the state tax refund offset program. Exceptions to the ten year limitation include claims reduced to final court judgments and claims due to an individual's intentional violation of the program requirements as set forth in rule 5101:1-23-75 of the Administrative Code.

(C) When is a claim not referred to the state tax refund offset program?

(1) The claim is not past due;

(2) The liable adult(s) is eligible for an Ohio works first grant reduction. Even if the claim is being repaid through a grant reduction of the assistance group's benefits, any other liable adult who is not currently in receipt of Ohio works first benefits may be referred to the Ohio department of taxation for offset;

(3) A state hearing decision on the issue of the claim is pending;

(4) The thirty days allowed for the assistance group's response to a notice of overpayment has not yet expired;

(5) An individual is making payments pursuant to an agreed upon schedule of payments or the claim has been paid in full; or

(6) There is another documented reason that the claim is not past due.

(D) Who is liable for a claim?

A liable individual is one who was an adult or minor head of household during the time period of the claim. Each claim is submitted in the name of one or more liable individuals.

(E) How is the debtor notified of the offset?

ODJFS mails an automated thirty day notice of intent to offset to the address provided by the Ohio department of taxation. The notice informs the debtor that agency records document:

(1) The individual is liable for a specified unpaid claim balance amount;

(2) Previous notification about the claim was sent;

(3) Prior collection efforts have been made;

(4) The claim is past due and legally enforceable;

(5) The county agency will refer the claim to the state tax refund offset program unless the debtor;

(a) Pays the balance within thirty days of the date of the notice if the balance is five hundred dollars or less; or

(b) Pays five hundred dollars within thirty days of the date of the notice (if the debt is greater than five hundred dollars) and makes other acceptable repayment arrangements for the balance due;

(6) Instructions about how to pay the claim;

(7) County contact information; and

(8) The right to request a review concerning the intent to refer the debt for offset.

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

Each county agency shall:

(1) Maintain a toll-free telephone service available during the agency's regular business hours. The toll-free telephone number and the mailing address of the county agency are printed on all state tax refund offset program notices to debtors.

(2) Verify the debtor's identifying information, access the claim case information, and discuss the case with the debtor when the debtor receives the thirty day notice of intent to offset and contacts the agency.

(3) Inform the debtor of repayment arrangements acceptable to prevent offset as specified in paragraph (I) of this rule.

(G) What are the requirements for an individual to request a review of the debt referred?

The request for review must:

(1) Be received at the county agency in writing no later than thirty days after the mailing date of the notice of intent;

(2) Include evidence or documentation to support the debtor's belief that the claim is not past due or is not legally enforceable;

(3) Contain the debtor's social security number; and

(4) Include a statement, signed by the debtor, authorizing another person to represent the debtor if someone other than the debtor makes a request for review on behalf of the debtor.

(H) How is a request for review handled?

(1) Within fifteen days of the debtor's request for review the county agency must notify the debtor in writing of the following:

(a) Continued intent to refer the claim for offset if the county agency determines that the claim is past-due or is legally enforceable;

(b) The debtor's right to have ODJFS review the county agency's decision; and

(c) Instructions and time limits for requesting the review by ODJFS.

(2) If the county agency determines that the claim is not past-due or is not legally enforceable, the county agency shall notify the debtor in writing that the claim will not be referred for offset, and take any action necessary to establish or recover the claim or other action as may be required.

(I) What are the responsibilities of ODJFS when a request for review is made?

(1) ODJFS shall not refer for offset any claim for which a review has been requested if:

(a) The county agency or ODJFS determines that the claim is not past-due or is not legally enforceable; or

(b) The county agency does not complete a requested review or does not notify the debtor of the results of that review.

(2) ODJFS shall notify the county agency and the debtor of its decision concerning any debtor's request for review. If the review decision is that the county agency:

(a) Correctly determined the claim is past-due and legally enforceable, ODJFS must notify the debtor that any further appeal must be made through the courts.

(b) Incorrectly determined the claim is past-due and legally enforceable, ODJFS also must notify the county agency about any corrective action which must be taken with respect to the claim.

(3) If the debtor makes an acceptable repayment arrangement with the county agency, the claim is not referred for offset.

(J) What is an acceptable repayment arrangement?

(1) If the claim(s) balance is five-hundred dollars or less, the balance must be paid in full within thirty days of the mailing date of the thirty day offset notice.

(2) If the claim(s) balance amount is more than five-hundred dollars, a minimum payment of five-hundred dollars and a signed, written agreement to repay the balance must be received by the county agency within thirty days of the mailing date of the thirty day offset notice. The repayment agreement must be acceptable to the county agency.

(3) Any payment the county agency receives in response to a debtor's receipt of a thirty day state tax refund offset program notice of intent to refer a claim for offset shall be credited to the claim(s) which is to be referred for offset.

(4) The county agency shall enter the repayment agreement and any additional information into client registry information system-enhanced (CRIS-E) on the day it is received.

(K) What happens when a claim does not meet the criteria for referral?

(1) When the county agency or ODJFS staff becomes aware that a claim referred for offset does not meet all criteria for referral, ODJFS shall cancel the referral.

(2) If the reason for cancellation of the referral is not because of a repayment arrangement being established as one of the changes listed in paragraph (I) of this rule, the county agency shall inform ODJFS of the inappropriate referral with the JFS 07430, "Offset Programs Referral Cancellation/Refund Request" (rev. 1/2004).

(3) The county agency shall submit the JFS 07430 by facsimile or e-mail to ODJFS within one business day from the date of the determination that the referral must be canceled.

(4) ODJFS shall update CRIS-E upon receipt of the JFS 07430 and the information will be transmitted to the Ohio department of taxation in the next weekly update file.

(L) What happens when a claim is referred?

After the certification of a debt:

(1) ODJFS sends weekly updates of account information to the Ohio department of taxation;

(2) Changes entered into CRIS-E, such as payments received, repayment arrangements, decrease in claim balance and reopening of the case will automatically update referral data already sent to the Ohio department of taxation;

(3) When the offset occurs, ODJFS credits the applicable claim(s) and updates CRIS-E accordingly, and ensures that the affected individual is notified of the offset in writing; and

(4) Upon receiving notice of offset, ODJFS shall refund any incorrect collection resulting from the offset. ODJFS must also notify the individual of the refund amount in writing.

(M) Must the state tax refund offset program information be safeguarded?

ODJFS and the county agency shall safeguard Ohio department of taxation information from unauthorized access and use. This information includes printed reports and on-line CRIS-E information provided to authorized personnel. This information may be used only as needed for the administration of the state tax refund offset program, and must be protected from overt and inadvertent disclosure.

Effective: 04/16/2012
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/20/2012 and 04/01/2017
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5107.05 , 5101.184
Rule Amplifies: 5107.05 , 5101.184
Prior Effective Dates: 10/1/00, 11/1/05, 12/1/10, 1/1/11