M E M O R A N D U M
TO: EES Program Administrators
FROM: Kathe Decker
DATE: December 1, 2011
SUBJECT: Implementation Instructions - KEESM Revision #52
This memo provides implementation instructions and information for the following December 1, 2011 policy changes in the Kansas Economic and Employment Support Manual (KEESM).
- Successful Families
- Lump Sum Non-Recurrent Diversion Payment Program – See Summary of Changes item II, A, 1 and KEESM section 1118.
OptionKEESM 1118 is being created to outline qualifying criteria for a $1000.00 One-Time Lump Sum Diversion Payment Option (TDP) which will be available to families applying for TANF benefits as of December 1, 2011. This payment may only be received once during the Kansas TANF life-time limit and is designed to meet immediate short term needs. Adult recipients of the Diversion payment and the Mandatory Filing Units (MFU) they are associated with will have a 42 month Life-Time Limit for TANF benefits in the state of Kansas.
The Diversion Payment Option should be offered to families when a temporary crisis may be jeopardizing their ability to accept a valid offer of employment or maintain current employment. To be eligible for the Diversion Payment, the following circumstances must exist:
- No household members can have received TANF benefits as an adult or emancipated minor in Kansas or any other state,
- No adults in the family may be receiving SSI.
- No adults in the family may be Ineligible Aliens (IA).
- The family may not have received a Kansas diversion payment in the past.
- At least one adult in the household must have employment or have a valid offer of employment.
- The TANF benefit for the family cannot be less than $1,000.00 for a one year period. The TANF benefit must be at least $83.00 a month.
- The family must have a documented crisis or emergency that will jeopardize existing employment (including established self–employment) or prevent the family from accepting a valid offer of employment.
NOTE: Established Self Employment must be documented as outlined in KEESM 6313.
The Diversion Payment Option should be offered to families meeting the criteria listed in 1 – 7 based on documented need of an emergency or crisis situation which may include but is not limited to:
- Car repairs
- Tools for work
- Has received eviction notices or utility shut off notices
- Has been on unpaid maternity leave but can return to work
- Needs help to relocate for a valid job offer
The need will be established on a case by case basis and must be documented. The $1,000.00 dollar Diversion Payment Option must meet the need and cannot be used to go towards a greater financial need. If eligible for the Diversion Payment Option, all adults in the family will sign a disclaimer stating they understand the conditions of accepting this option and that those conditions apply to each adult in the family.
Upon application, it should be determined if the applicant is employed or have a valid offer of employment and if an emergency or crisis exists which would meet the criteria for offering a Diversion Payment option. If the TANF benefit is determined to be $83.00 or more (you may use the TANF work sheet ES- 3103 or 3401.1), and the applicant decides to take the Diversion Payment option the worker will:
- Have all adults on the case sign the disclaimer stating they understand they will not be eligible to apply for TANF benefits for a 12 month period and they acknowledge they and any MFU they are associated with will be eligible for 42 months life-time limit for TANF in the state of Kansas.
- Deny TANF using a code of TD (TANF Diversion) on the KAECSES AFED Screen. Post the TD code on PRAP by each of the adults in the household.
- Send a KAECSES notice (A-112) which denies TANF and approves the diversion payment.
- All adults on the case will be opened in KSCARES as JO/OP.
- Will open a component of TDP (TANF Diversion Payment) on SESP/COUP. The worker will enter the first day of the month the TD was issued in the start date field and the last day of the 12th month in the review date field. In the component description field the worker will note “Agreed to TD on MMDDYY. Payment made on MMDDYY”
- Create a WP payment on AUSW using the TDP component. The payment type will be TD and the service code will be TD. If there are two adults on the case, a payment of $500.00 will be created for each.
NOTE: KSCARES will prevent the diversion payment from being authorized if an adult has received TANF or a diversion payment in the past.
- Enter the payment(s) on PAWP.
- Send the recipient(s) to get Vision cards if they do not have one already.
- Once payment has been issued, post a closure date on SESP/COUP ( this date will be different than the review date which should reflect the 12 month period the HH remains ineligible for TANF application) close the WP by and the KSCARES case unless recipients are receiving or have applied for child care benefits. The closure reason on PASS will be TD.
NOTE: If the KSCARES case is closed, the worker must let the recipient know they must withdraw all funds within 3 months of issuance. Any funds left on the EBT card more than 3 months will age off.
Examples: The following examples illustrate these changes:
Example 1: Employed Applicant
Candy Land has a job but has fallen behind on her rent payments because her hours were temporarily reduced to avoid lay-offs at her company. The personnel counselor suggested she apply for TANF benefits to supplement her income until the cut backs were over in approximately 3 months. She applied and the EES worker discovered she was eligible for the Diversion payment option. Candy and the worker determine to her rent and bills can be covered until her hours are increased for just under $1,000.00. The worker provides Candy with the information about the Diversion payment option and has her sign the disclaimer. A payment is issued to the Vision card from KSCARES for the amount of $1,000.00. Since Candy receives Child Care assistance, the worker does not close KSCARES but closes only the JO/OP work program on PASS using the TD closure code.
Has already received TANF benefits Alba has just had a baby and has taken maternity leave without pay. She has a written promise from her employer that her job will be held for 3 months until she can return. She applies for TANF and Food Assistance to help her pay the bills while on leave. The case worker determines Alba already received 45 months of TANF. Alba is not eligible for the Diversion Payment. The worker opens her TANF case and issues her benefits until she is closed for her TANF life-time limit at 48 months.
Self Employed Frankie and Johnnie are self-employed. They run a landscape business where Johnnie does the labor and Frankie keeps the books. Their business is well established but has been slow lately. When Johnnie’s truck breaks down, Frankie comes in to apply for TANF. The worker determines they would be eligible for more than $83.00 a month and during the interview Frankie relates the issue with the truck. The worker documents the truck repairs will cost less than $1,000.00 so they offer Frankie and Johnnie the Diversion option. Both Frankie and Johnnie must sign the disclaimer and the worker will open them both up in KSCARES and issue a $500.00 diversion payment to each. They do not receive food assistance and do not have an open child care plan. The worker will send them to set up their EBT card to receive the diversion payment.
Co-habiting member of the HH has received a TDP in the past Ellen and Joe have recently moved in together. They do not have a common child, but they present themselves as a couple in a serious relationship. When they both lose their jobs Joe gets an offer for employment in a town 200 miles away. They do not have the money to cover moving costs. Joe remembers he had gotten a TDP when he lived with his last girlfriend and their common child. Ellen applies for TANF identifying Joe as her boyfriend and asks about the TDP. They are not eligible because Joe is part of the MFU and has received a TDP in the past. If Joe is only a roommate and Ellen and her child have not received TANF benefits in the past, Ellen may be eligible for the TDP if she had a valid offer of employment or was employed herself and if her TANF benefit is $83 or more a month.
Child only TANF adult applies for TDP Sandy takes care of and receives TANF for her two grandchildren. She has never received TANF for herself. Sandy’s car breaks down and she finds herself struggling to get to work. Worried she may lose her job she applies for TANF and inquires about the TDP. Since Sandy is adding herself to an on-going case, she would not be eligible for the TDP.
Applicant receives a diversion payment but no TANF from another state Bill, Bonnie and their son Bobby have moved here from Portland to start working for an aircraft company. At the suggestion of their friends, they apply for TANF and ask about the TDP to help them pay the $800.00 deposit on their apartment. During the interview, the case worker finds out they received a diversion payment while living in Portland. The case worker calls the Portland office and finds out the diversion payment they received did not count towards their Federal life-time limit in Oregon. Based on this information, they have not received TANF in the past and would be eligible for TDP if they met all other criteria.
- Hardship – See Summary of Changes item II, A, 2 and KEESM section 2243.
The Hardship Criteria are being revised to add the previously removed hardship criteria. Households which have reached the 48th month of TANF assistance may be reviewed for hardship statues status if all TANF adults meet one or more of the following criteria. In addition, cases will be closed at 60 months regardless of the hardship.
The following hardships are to be considered for each case by the twenty-fourth month when all mandatory TAF recipients in the household, meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Is a caretaker of a disabled family member living in the household. Form ES-4310 must be completed at least annually indicating the nature of disability and duration. For disabilities that are not considered permanent, the ES-4310 must be completed yearly or as indicated. For those disabilities that are considered permanent, the ES-4310 must be completed at least once.
- Has a disability which precludes employment on a long term basis (as defined in the KEESM appendix) or requires substantial rehabilitation (as defined in the KEESM appendix). Verification is to be obtained through the new doctor’s statement ES-4309, or ES-4309 and a vocational assessment, or a psychological evaluation. The customer must be actively pursuing Social Security disability benefits.
- Needs a time limit extension to overcome the effects of domestic violence/sexual assault [see 2244, 3310.4 (11)]. This hardship must be re-established every six months through a joint staffing between EES staff, the OARS advocate and the customer.
- Is involved with Children and Family Services (CFS) and has an open social service plan verified by contact with CFS. An IST staffing should occur prior to using this hardship and every six months once invoked.
- Individual case by case hardship may be determined by the EES program administrator or their designee. Hardship for such a family member will end the first month cooperation ceases. The extension may be reviewed as needed or after 6, 9, and 12 months.