Utah Administrative Code

The Utah Administrative Code is the body of all effective administrative rules as compiled and organized by the Division of Administrative Rules (see Subsection 63G-3-102(5); see also Sections 63G-3-701 and 702).

NOTE: For a list of rules that have been made effective since April 1, 2019, please see the codification segue page.

NOTE TO RULEFILING AGENCIES: Use the RTF version for submitting rule changes.


R986. Workforce Services, Employment Development.

Rule R986-200. Family Employment Program.

As in effect on April 1, 2019

Table of Contents

R986-200-201. Authority for Family Employment Program (FEP) and Family Employment Program Two Parent (FEPTP) and Other Applicable Rules.

(1) The Department provides services to eligible families under FEP and FEPTP under the authority granted in the Employment Support Act, UCA 35A-3-301 et seq. Funding is provided by the federal government through Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF) as authorized by PRWORA.

(2) Rule R986-100 applies to FEP and FEPTP unless expressly noted otherwise.

R986-200-202. Family Employment Program (FEP).

(1) The goal of FEP is to increase family income through employment, and where appropriate, child support and/or disability payments.

(2) FEP is for families with no more than one able bodied parent in the household. If the family has two able bodied parents in the household, the family is not eligible for FEP but may be eligible for FEPTP. Able bodied means capable of earning at least $500 per month in the Utah labor market.

(3) If a household has at least one incapacitated parent, the parent claiming incapacity must verify that incapacity in one of the following ways:

(a) receipt of disability benefits from SSA;

(b) 100% disabled by VA; or

(c) by submitting a written statement from:

(i) a licensed medical doctor;

(ii) a doctor of osteopathy;

(iii) a licensed Mental Health Therapist as defined in UCA 58-60-102;

(iv) a licensed Advanced Practice Registered Nurse; or

(v) a licensed Physician's Assistant.

(d) the written statement in paragraph (c) of this subsection must be based on a current physical examination of the parent, not just a review of parent's medical records.

(4) Incapacity means not capable of earning $500 per month. The incapacity must be expected to last 30 days or longer.

(5) An applicant or parent must cooperate in the obtaining of a second opinion regarding incapacity if requested by the Department. Only the costs associated with a second opinion requested by the Department will be paid for by the Department. The Department will not pay the costs associated with obtaining a second opinion if the parent requests the second opinion.

(6) An incapacitated parent is included in the FEP household assistance unit and the parent's income and assets are counted toward establishing eligibility unless the parent is a SSI recipient. If the parent is a SSI recipient, that parent is not included in the household and none of the income or assets of the SSI recipient is counted.

(7) An incapacitated parent who is included in the household must still negotiate, sign and agree to participate in an employment plan. If the incapacity is such that employment is not feasible now or in the future, participation may be limited to cooperating with ORS and filing for any assistance or benefits to which the parent may be entitled. If it is believed the incapacity might not be permanent, the parent will also be required to seek assistance in overcoming the incapacity.

R986-200-203. Citizenship and Alienage Requirements.

(1) All persons in the household assistance unit who are included in the financial assistance payment, including children, must be a citizen of the United States or meet alienage criteria.

(2) An alien is not eligible for financial assistance unless the alien meets the definition of qualified alien. A qualified alien is an alien:

(a) who is paroled into the United States under section 212(d)(5) of the INA for at least one year;

(b) who is admitted as a refugee under section 207 of the INA;

(c) who is granted asylum under section 208 of the INA;

(d) who is a Cuban or Haitian entrant in accordance with the requirements of 45 CFR Part 401;

(e) who is an Amerasian from Vietnam and was admitted to the United States as an immigrant pursuant to Public Law 100-202 and Public Law 100-461;

(f) whose deportation is being withheld under sections 243(h) or 241(b)(3) of the INA;

(g) who is lawfully admitted for permanent residence under the INA,

(h) who is granted conditional entry pursuant to section 203(a)(7) of the INA;

(i) who meets the definition of certain battered aliens under Section 8 U.S.C. 1641(c); or

(j) who is a certified victim of trafficking.

(3) All aliens granted lawful temporary or permanent resident status under Sections 210, 302, or 303 of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, are disqualified from receiving financial assistance for a period of five years from the date lawful temporary resident status is granted.

(4) Aliens are required to provide proof, in the form of documentation issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), of immigration status. Victims of trafficking can provide proof from the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

R986-200-204. Eligibility Requirements.

(1) To be eligible for financial assistance under the FEP or FEPTP a household assistance unit must include:

(a) a pregnant woman when it has been medically verified that she is in the third calendar month prior to the expected month of delivery, or later, and who, if the child were born and living with her in the month of payment, would be eligible. The unborn child is not included in the financial assistance payment; or

(b) at least one minor dependent child who is a citizen or meets the alienage criteria. All minor children age 6 to 16 must attend school, or be exempt under 53A-11-102, to be included in the household assistance unit for a financial assistance payment for that child.

(i) A minor child is defined as being under the age of 18 years and not emancipated by marriage or by court order; or

(ii) an unemancipated child, at least 18 years old but under 19 years old, with no high school diploma or its equivalent, who is a full-time student in a secondary school, or in the equivalent level of vocational or technical training, and the school has verified a reasonable expectation the 18 year old will complete the program before reaching age 19.

(2) Households must meet other eligibility requirements of income, assets, and participation in addition to the eligibility requirements found in R986-100.

(3) Persons who are fleeing to avoid prosecution of a felony, or who are violating parole or probation for a felony or a misdemeanor, are ineligible for financial assistance.

(4) All clients who are required to complete a negotiated employment plan as provided in R986-200-206 must attend a FEP orientation meeting, sign a FEP Agreement, and negotiate and sign an employment plan within 30 days of submitting his or her application for assistance. Attendance at the orientation meeting can only be excused for reasonable cause as defined in R986-200-212(8). The application for assistance will not be complete until the client has attended the meeting.

(5) If a parent in the financial assistance household received TANF funded financial assistance benefits from another state or from a tribe, the entire household is ineligible to receive TANF funded financial assistance in Utah the same month. This is true even if household composition has changed. If a child in the household has received TANF funded financial assistance in another household, in this or any other state, the child will be excluded from the household determination in the same month according to the provisions of R986-200-205(2)(d). TANF funded financial assistance in Utah is FEP, FEP-TP, Emergency Assistance and AA.

R986-200-205. How to Determine Who Is Included in the Household Assistance Unit.

The amount of financial assistance for an eligible household is based on the size of the household assistance unit and the income and assets of all people in the household assistance unit.

(1) The income and assets of the following individuals living in the same household must be counted in determining eligibility of the household assistance unit:

(a) all natural parents, adoptive parents, parents listed on the birth certificate and stepparents, unless expressly excluded in this section, who are related to and residing in the same household as an eligible dependent child. Natural parentage is determined as follows:

(i) A woman is the natural parent if her name appears on the birth record of the child.

(ii) For a man to be determined to be the natural parent, that relationship must be established or acknowledged or his name must appear on the birth record. If the parents have a solemnized marriage at the time of birth, relationship is established and can only be rebutted by a DNA test;

(b) household members who would otherwise be included but who are absent solely by reason of employment, school or training, or who will return home to live within 30 days;

(c) all minor siblings, half-siblings, and adopted siblings living in the same household as an eligible dependent child; and

(d) all spouses living in the household.

(2) The following individuals in the household are not counted in determining the household size for determining payment amount nor are the assets or income of the individuals counted in determining household eligibility:

(a) a recipient of SSI benefits. If the SSI recipient is the parent and is receiving FEP assistance for the child(ren) residing in the household, the SSI parent must cooperate with establishing paternity and child support enforcement for the household to be eligible. If the only dependent child is a SSI recipient, the parent or specified relative may receive a FEP assistance payment which does not include that child, provided the parent or specified relative is not on SSI and can meet all other requirements;

(b) a child during any month in which a foster care maintenance payment is being provided to meet the child's needs. If the only dependent child in the household is receiving a foster care maintenance payment, the parent or specified relative may still receive a FEP assistance payment which does not include the child, provided all other eligibility, income and asset requirements are met;

(c) an absent household member who is expected to be gone from the household for 180 days or more unless the absence is due to employment, school or training. If the absence is due to employment, school or training the household member must be included.

(d) a child who was counted as a dependent in a household that received TANF funded financial assistance or in a specified relative household in the same month. A child cannot be counted as a dependent in two households that receive TANF funded financial assistance or specific relative assistance in the same month.

(3) The household assistance unit can choose whether to include or exclude the following individuals living in the household. If included, all income and assets of that person are counted:

(a) all absent household members who are not required to participate in an employment plan under R986-200-210 and who are expected to be temporarily absent from the home for more than 30 but not more than 180 consecutive days unless the absence is due to employment, school or training. If the absence is due to employment, school or training the household member must be included. If the household member is required to participate in an employment plan, the household member must be included.

(b) Native American children, or deaf or blind children, who are temporarily absent while in boarding school, even if the temporary absence is expected to last more than 180 days;

(c) an adopted child who receives a federal, state or local government special needs adoption payment. If the adopted child receiving this type of payment is the only dependent child in the household and excluded, the parent(s) or specified relative may still receive a FEP or FEPTP assistance payment which does not include the child, provided all other eligibility requirements are met. If the household chooses to include the adopted child in the household assistance unit under this paragraph, the special needs adoption payment is counted as income;

(d) former stepchildren who have no blood relationship to a dependent child in the household;

(e) a specified relative. If a household requests that a specified relative be included in the household assistance unit, only one specified relative can be included in the financial assistance payment regardless of how many specified relatives are living in the household. The income and assets of all household members are counted according to the provisions of R986-200-241.

(f) if the only adult in the household is temporarily absent, the dependent child or children must be left under the care of an adult or benefits will be denied;

(4) In situations where there are children in the home for which there is court order regarding custody of the children, the Department will determine if the children should be included in the household assistance unit based on the actual living arrangements of the children and not on the custody order. If the child lives in the home 50% or more of the time, the child must be included in the household assistance unit and duty of support completed. It is not an option to exclude the child. This is true even if the court awarded custody to the other parent or the court ordered joint custody. If the child lives in the household less than 50% of the time, the child cannot be included in the household. It is not an option to include the child. This is true even if the parent applying for financial assistance has been awarded custody by the court or the court ordered joint custody. If financial assistance is allowed, a joint custody order might be modified by the court under the provisions of 30-3-10.2(4) and 30-3-10.4.

(5) The income and assets of the following individuals are counted in determining eligibility even though the individual is not included in the assistance payment:

(a) a household member who has been disqualified from the receipt of assistance because of an IPV, (fraud determination);

(b) a household member who does not meet the citizenship and alienage requirements; or

(c) a minor child who is not in school full time or participating in self sufficiency activities.

R986-200-206. Participation Requirements.

(1) Payment of any and all financial assistance is contingent upon all parents in the household, including adoptive and stepparents, participating, to the maximum extent possible, in:

(a) assessment and evaluation;

(b) the completion of a negotiated employment plan; and

(c) assisting ORS in good faith to:

(i) establish the paternity of all minor children; and

(ii) establish and enforce child support obligations.

(d) obtaining any and all other sources of income. If any household member is or appears to be eligible for unemployment, SSA, Workers Compensation, VA, or any other benefits or forms of assistance, the Department will refer the individual to the appropriate agency and the individual must apply for and pursue obtaining those benefits. If an individual refuses to apply for and pursue these benefits or assistance, the individual is ineligible for financial assistance. Pursuing these benefits includes cooperating fully and providing all the necessary documentation to insure receipt of benefits. If the individual is already receiving assistance from the Department and it is found he or she is not cooperating fully to obtain benefits from another source, the individual will be considered to not be participating in his or her employment plan. If the individual is otherwise eligible for FEP or FEPTP, financial assistance will be provided until eligibility for other benefits or assistance has been determined. If an individual's application for SSA benefits is denied, the individual must fully cooperate in prosecuting an appeal of that SSA denial at least to the Social Security ALJ level.

(2) Parents who have been determined to be ineligible to be included in the financial assistance payment are still required to participate.

(3) Children at least 16 years old but under 18 years old, unless they are in school full-time or in school part-time and working less than 100 hours per month are required to participate.

R986-200-207. Participation in Child Support Enforcement.

(1) Receipt of child support is an important element in increasing a family's income.

(2) Every natural, legal or adoptive parent has a duty to support his or her children and stepchildren even if the children do not live in the parental home.

(3) A parent's duty to support continues until the child:

(a) reaches age 18;

(b) is 18 years old and enrolled in high school during the normal and expected year of graduation;

(c) is emancipated by marriage or court order;

(d) is a member of the armed forces of the United States; or

(e) is self supporting.

(4) A client receiving financial assistance automatically assigns to the state any and all rights to child support for all children who are included in the household assistance unit while receiving financial assistance. The assignment of rights occurs even if the client claims or establishes "good cause or other exception" for refusal to cooperate. The assignment of rights to support, cooperation in establishing paternity, and establishing and enforcing child support is a condition of eligibility for the receipt of financial assistance.

(5) For each child included in the financial assistance payment, the client must also assign any and all rights to alimony or spousal support from the noncustodial parent while the client receives public assistance.

(6) The client must cooperate with the Department and ORS in establishing and enforcing the spousal and child support obligation from any and all natural, legal, or adoptive non-custodial parents.

(7) If a parent is absent from the home, the client must identify and help locate the non-custodial parent.

(8) If a child is conceived or born during a marriage, the husband is considered the legal father, even if the wife states he is not the natural father.

(9) If the child is born out of wedlock, the client must also cooperate in the establishment of paternity.

(10) ORS is solely responsible for determining if the client is cooperating in identifying the noncustodial parent and with child support establishment and enforcement efforts for the purposes of receipt of financial assistance. The Department cannot review, modify, or reject a decision made by ORS.

(11) Unless good cause is shown, financial assistance will terminate if a parent or specified relative does not cooperate with ORS in establishing paternity or enforcing child support obligations.

(12) Upon notification from ORS that the client is not cooperating, the Department will commence reconciliation procedures as outlined in R986-200-212. If the client continues to refuse to cooperate with ORS at the end of the reconciliation process, financial assistance will be terminated.

(13) Termination of financial assistance for non cooperation is immediate, without a reduction period outlined in R986-200-212, if:

(a) the client is a specified relative who is not included in the household assistance unit;

(b) the client is a parent receiving SSI benefits;

(c) the client is participating in FEPTP; or

(d) the client is an undocumented alien parent.

(14) Once the financial assistance has been terminated due to the client's failure to cooperate with child support enforcement, the client must then reapply for financial assistance. This time, the client must cooperate with child support collection prior to receiving any financial assistance.

(15) A specified relative, undocumented alien parent, SSI recipient, or disqualified parent in a household receiving FEP assistance must assign rights to support of any kind and cooperate with all establishment and enforcement efforts even if the parent or relative is not included in the financial assistance payment.

R986-200-208. Good Cause for Not Cooperating With ORS.

(1) The Department is responsible for determining if the client has good cause or other exception for not cooperating with ORS.

(2) To establish good cause for not cooperating, the client must file a request for a good cause determination and provide proof of good cause within 20 days of the request.

(3) A client has the right to request a good cause determination at any time, even if ORS or court proceedings have begun.

(4) Good cause for not cooperating with ORS can be shown if one of following circumstances exists:

(a) The child, for whom support is sought, was conceived as a result of incest or rape. To prove good cause under this paragraph, the client must provide:

(i) birth certificates;

(ii) medical records;

(iii) Department records;

(iv) records from another state or federal agency;

(v) court records; or

(vi) law enforcement records.

(b) Legal proceedings for the adoption of the child are pending before a court. Proof is established if the client provides copies of documents filed in a court of competent jurisdiction.

(c) A public or licensed private social agency is helping the client resolve the issue of whether to keep or relinquish the child for adoption and the discussions between the agency and client have not gone on for more than three months. The client is required to provide written notice from the agency concerned.

(d) The client's cooperation in establishing paternity or securing support is reasonably expected to result in physical or emotional harm to the child or to the parent or specified relative. If harm to the parent or specified relative is claimed, it must be significant enough to reduce that individual's capacity to adequately care for the child.

(i) Physical or emotional harm is considered to exist when it results in, or is likely to result in, an impairment that has a substantial effect on the individual's ability to perform daily life activities.

(ii) The source of physical or emotional harm may be from individuals other than the noncustodial parent.

(iii) The client must provide proof that the individual is likely to inflict such harm or has done so in the past. Proof must be from an independent source such as:

(A) medical records or written statements from a mental health professional evidencing a history of abuse or current health concern. The record or statement must contain a diagnosis and prognosis where appropriate;

(B) court records;

(C) records from the Department or other state or federal agency; or

(D) law enforcement records.

(5) If a claim of good cause is denied because the client is unable to provide proof as required under Subsection (4) (a) or (d) the client can request a hearing and present other evidence of good cause at the hearing. If the ALJ finds that evidence credible and convincing, the ALJ can make a finding of good cause under Subsections (4) (a) or (d) based on the evidence presented by the client at the hearing. A finding of good cause by the ALJ can be based solely on the sworn testimony of the client.

(6) When the claim of good cause for not cooperating is based in whole or in part on anticipated physical or emotional harm, the Department must consider:

(a) the client's present emotional health and history;

(b) the intensity and probable duration of the resulting impairment;

(c) the degree of cooperation required; and

(d) the extent of involvement of the child in the action to be taken by ORS.

(7) The Department recognizes no other exceptions, apart from those recognized by ORS, to the requirement that a client cooperate in good faith with ORS in the establishment of paternity and establishment and enforcement of child support.

(8) If the client has exercised his or her right to an agency review or adjudicative proceeding under Utah Administrative Procedures Act on the question of non-cooperation as determined by ORS, the Department will not review, modify, or reverse the decision of ORS on the question of non-cooperation. If the client did not have an opportunity for a review with ORS, the Department will refer the request for review to ORS for determination.

(9) Once a request for a good cause determination has been made, all collection efforts by ORS will be suspended until the Department has made a decision on good cause.

(10) A client has the right to appeal a Department decision on good cause to an ALJ by following the procedures for appeal found in R986-100.

(11) If a parent requests a hearing on the basis of good cause for not cooperating, the resulting decision cannot change or modify the determination made by ORS on the question of good faith.

(12) Even if the client establishes good cause not to cooperate with ORS, if the Department supervisor determines that support enforcement can safely proceed without the client's cooperation, ORS may elect to do so. Before proceeding without the client's cooperation, ORS will give the client advance notice that it intends to commence enforcement proceedings and give the client an opportunity to object. The client must file his or her objections with ORS within 10 days.

(13) A determination that a client has good cause for non-cooperation may be reviewed and reversed by the Department upon a finding of new, or newly discovered evidence, or a change in circumstances.

R986-200-209. Participation in Obtaining an Assessment.

(1) Within 30 business days of the date the application for financial assistance has been completed and approved, the client will be assigned to an employment counselor and must complete an assessment.

(2) The assessment evaluates a client's needs and is used to develop an employment plan.

(3) Completion of the assessment requires that the client provide information about:

(a) family circumstances including health, needs of the children, support systems, and relationships;

(b) personal needs or potential barriers to employment;

(c) education;

(d) work history;

(e) skills;

(f) financial resources and needs; and

(g) any other information relevant to the client's ability to become self-sufficient.

(4) The client may be required to participate in testing or completion of other assessment tools and may be referred to another person within the Department, another agency, or to a company or individual under contract with the Department to complete testing, assessment, and evaluation.

R986-200-210. Requirements of an Employment Plan.

(1) Within 15 business days of completion of the assessment, the following individuals in the household assistance unit are required to sign and make a good faith effort to participate to the maximum extent possible in a negotiated employment plan:

(a) All parents, including parents whose income and assets are included in determining eligibility of the household but have been determined to be ineligible or disqualified from being included in the financial assistance payment.

(b) Dependent minor children who are at least 16 years old, who are not parents, unless they are full-time students or are employed an average of 30 hours a week or more.

(2) The goal of the employment plan is obtaining marketable employment and it must contain the soonest possible target date for entry into employment consistent with the employability of the individual.

(3) An employment plan consists of activities designed to help an individual become employed. For each activity there will be:

(a) an expected outcome;

(b) an anticipated completion date;

(c) the number of participation hours agreed upon per week; and

(d) a definition of what will constitute satisfactory progress for the activity.

(4) Each activity must be directed toward the goal of increasing the household's income.

(5) Activities may require that the client:

(a) obtain immediate employment. If so, the parent client shall:

(i) promptly register for work and commence a search for employment for a specified number of hours each week; and

(ii) regularly submit a report to the Department on:

(A) how much time was spent in job search activities;

(B) the number of job applications completed;

(C) the interviews attended;

(D) the offers of employment extended; and

(E) other related information required by the Department.

(b) participate in an educational program to obtain a high school diploma or its equivalent, if the parent client does not have a high school diploma;

(c) obtain education or training necessary to obtain employment;

(d) obtain medical, mental health, or substance abuse treatment;

(e) resolve transportation and child care needs;

(f) relocate from a rural area which would require a round trip commute in excess of two hours in order to find employment;

(g) resolve any other barriers identified as preventing or limiting the ability of the client to obtain employment, and/or

(h) participate in rehabilitative services as prescribed by the State Office of Rehabilitation.

(6) The client must meet the performance expectations of, and provide verification for, each eligible activity in the employment plan in order to stay eligible for financial assistance. A list of what will be considered acceptable documentation is available at each employment center.

(7) The client must cooperate with the Department's efforts to monitor and evaluate the client's activities and progress under the employment plan, which includes providing the Department with a release of information, if necessary to facilitate the Department's monitoring of compliance.

(8) Where available, supportive services will be provided as needed for each activity.

(9) The client agrees, as part of the employment plan, to cooperate with other agencies, or with individuals or companies under contract with the Department, as outlined in the employment plan.

(10) An employment plan may, at the discretion of the Department, be amended to reflect new information or changed circumstances.

(11) The number of hours of participation in subsection (3)(c) of this section will not be lower than 30 hours per week. All 30 hours must be in eligible activities. 20 of those 30 hours must be in priority activities. A list of approved priority and eligible activities is available at each employment center. If the client has a child in the household under the age of six, the number of hours of participation in subsection (3)(c) of this section is a minimum of 20 hours per week and all of those 20 hours must be in priority activities.

(12) In the event a client has barriers which prevent the client from 30 hours of participation per week, or 20 hours in priority activities, a lower number of hours of participation can be approved if:

(a) the Department identifies and documents the barriers which prevent the client from full participation; and

(b) the client agrees to participate to the maximum extent possible to resolve the barriers which prevent the client from participating.

R986-200-211. Education and Training As Part of an Employment Plan.

(1) A parent client's participation in education or training beyond that required to obtain a high school diploma or its equivalent will only be approved if all of the following are met:

(a) The client can demonstrate that the education or training would substantially increase the income level that the client would be able to achieve without the education and training, and would offset the loss of income the household incurs while the education or training is being completed.

(b) The client does not already have a degree or skills training certificate in a currently marketable occupation.

(c) An assessment specific to the client's education and training aptitude has been completed showing the client has the ability to be successful in the education or training.

(d) The mental and physical health of the client indicates the education or training could be completed successfully and the client could perform the job once the schooling is completed.

(e) The specific employment goal that requires the education or training is marketable in the area where the client resides or the client has agreed to relocate for the purpose of employment once the education/training is completed.

(f) The client, when determined appropriate, is willing to complete the education/training as quickly as possible, such as attending school full time which may include attending school during the summer.

(2) Graduate work can never be approved or supported as part of an employment plan.

R986-200-212. Reconciling Disputes and Termination of Financial Assistance for Failure to Comply.

If a client who is required to participate in an employment plan consistently fails, without reasonable cause, to show good faith in complying with the employment plan, the Department will terminate all or part of the financial assistance. This will apply if the Department is notified that the client has failed to cooperate with ORS as provided in R986-200-207. A termination for the reasons mentioned in this paragraph will occur only after the Department attempts reconciliation through the following process:

(1) When an employment counselor discovers that a client is not complying with his or her employment plan, the employment counselor will attempt to discuss compliance with the client and explore solutions. The employment counselor will also send written notice of the failure to comply to the client. The notice will specify a date certain by which the client must comply and the consequences of not complying by that date.

(2) If compliance is not resolved by the date specified in the notice sent under subsection (1) of this section, the employment counselor will send a second written notice and initiate termination of the household financial assistance. This second notice will advise the client that the financial assistance will terminate at the end of that month unless the client resolves the problem, as provided in paragraph (2)(a) of this section. This second notice will also provide a date certain by which the compliance problems must be resolved for benefits to continue.

(a) If the client establishes reasonable cause for not complying with the employment plan or provides required documentation by the date specified in the first or second notice, financial assistance will continue or be restored.

(b) If the compliance problem is not resolved as provided in subparagraph (a) of this subsection, the household will be ineligible for financial assistance for one full month. The client must then reapply for financial benefits and successfully complete a two week trial participation period before financial assistance will be approved.

(3) A client must demonstrate a genuine willingness to comply with the employment plan during the two week trial period.

(4) The two week trial period may be waived only if the client has cured all previous compliance issues prior to re-application.

(5) The provisions of this section apply to clients who are eligible for and receiving financial assistance during an extension period as provided in R986-200-218.

(6) A child age 16-18 who is not a parent and who is not participating will be removed from the financial assistance grant. The financial assistance will continue for other household members provided they are participating. If the child successfully completes a two week trial period, the child will be added back on to the financial assistance grant.

(7) Reasonable cause under this section means the client was prevented from participating through no fault of his or her own or failed to participate for reasons that are reasonable and compelling.

(8) Reasonable cause can also be established, as provided in 45 CFR 261.56, by a client who is a single custodial parent caring for a child under age six who refuses to engage in required work because he or she is unable to obtain needed child care because appropriate and affordable child care arrangements are not available within a reasonable distance from the home or work site.

(9) If a client is also receiving SNAP and the client is disqualified for non-participation under this section, the client will also be subject to the SNAP sanctions found in 7CFR 273.7(f)(2) unless the client meets an exemption under SNAP regulations.

R986-200-213. Financial Assistance for a Minor Parent.

(1) Financial assistance may be provided to a single minor parent who resides in a place of residence maintained by a parent, legal guardian, or other adult relative of the single minor parent, unless the minor parent is exempt.

(2) The single minor parent may be exempt when:

(a) The minor parent has no living parent or legal guardian whose whereabouts is known;

(b) No living parent or legal guardian of the minor parent allows the minor parent to live in his or her home;

(c) The minor parent lived apart from his or her own parent or legal guardian for a period of at least one year before either the birth of the dependent child or the parent's having made application for FEP and the minor parent was self supporting during this same period of time; or

(d) The physical or emotional health or safety of the minor parent or dependent child would be jeopardized if they resided in the same residence with the minor parent's parent or legal guardian. A referral will be made to DCFS if allegations are made under this paragraph.

(3) Prior to authorizing financial assistance, the Department must approve the living arrangement of all single minor parents exempt under section (2) above. Approval of the living arrangement is not a certification or guarantee of the safety, quality, or condition of the living arrangements of the single minor parent.

(4) All minor parents regardless of the living arrangement must participate in education for parenting and life skills in infant and child wellness programs operated by the Department of Health and, for not less than 20 hours per week:

(a) attend high school or an alternative to high school, if the minor parent does not have a high school diploma;

(b) participate in education and training; and/or

(c) participate in employment.

(5) If a single minor parent resides with a parent, the Department shall include the income of the parent of the single minor parent in determining the single minor parent's eligibility for financial assistance.

(6) If a single minor parent resides with a parent who is receiving financial assistance, the single minor parent is included in the parent's household assistance unit.

(7) If a single minor parent receives financial assistance but does not reside with a parent, the Department shall seek an order requiring that the parent of the single minor parent financially support the single minor parent.

R986-200-214. Assistance for Specified Relatives.

(1) Specified relatives include:

(a) grandparents;

(b) brothers and sisters;

(c) stepbrothers and stepsisters;

(d) aunts and uncles;

(e) first cousins;

(f) first cousins once removed;

(g) nephews and nieces;

(h) people of prior generations as designated by the prefix grand, great, great-great, or great- great-great;

(i) brothers and sisters by legal adoption;

(j) the spouse of any person listed above;

(k) the former spouse of any person listed above;

(l) individuals who can prove they met one of the above mentioned relationships via a blood relationship even though the legal relationship has been terminated;

(m) former stepparents

(n) a Native American adult who has a Native American child placed in, or living in that adult's home, and both the child and the adult are members of, or eligible for membership in, a federally recognized tribe; and

(o) an adult of the same ethnicity, culture, country of origin, religion, language and/or nationality as the refugee/asylee child in his or her care.

(2) The specified relative must provide proof of relationship to the child. If the specified relative is unable to provide proof, but DCFS has determined that one of the relationships in subparagraph (1) of this section exists, the Department will accept the DCFS determination. DCFS will not be liable for any potential overpayment resulting from a determination made regarding relationship.

(3) The Department shall require compliance with Section 30-1-4.5

(4) A specified relative may apply for financial assistance for the child. If the child is otherwise eligible, FEP rules apply.

(5) The child must have a blood or a legal relationship to the specified relative even if the legal relationship has been terminated, or have a blood relationship to a dependent child who is in the home and who is included in the household for assistance purposes. This does not apply to specified relatives who are eligible under subsection (1)(n) and (o) of this section;

(6) Both parents must be absent from the home where the child lives. This is true even for a parent who has had his or her parental rights terminated;

(7) The child must be currently living with, and not just visiting, the specified relative;

(8) The parents' obligation to financially support their child will be enforced and the specified relative must cooperate with child support enforcement; and

(9) If the parent(s) state they are willing to support the child if the child would return to live with the parent(s), the child is ineligible unless there is a court order removing the child from the parent(s)' home.

(10) If the specified relative is currently receiving FEP or FEPTP, the child must be included in that household assistance unit.

(11) The income and resources of the specified relative are not counted unless the specified relative requests inclusion in the household assistance unit.

(12) If the specified relative is not currently receiving FEP or FEPTP, and the specified relative does not want to be included in the financial assistance payment, the specified relative shall be paid, on behalf of the child, the full standard financial assistance payment for one person. The size of the financial assistance payment shall be increased accordingly for each additional eligible child in the household assistance unit excluding the dependent child(ren) of the specified relative. Since the specified relative is not included in the household assistance unit, the income and assets of the specified relative, or the relative's spouse, are not counted.

(13) The specified relative may request to be included in the household assistance unit. If the specified relative is included in the household assistance unit, the household must meet all FEP eligibility requirements including participation requirements and asset limits.

(14) Income eligibility for a specified relative who wants to be included in the household assistance unit is calculated according to R986-200-241.

R986-200-215. Family Employment Program Two Parent Household (FEPTP).

(1) FEPTP is for households otherwise eligible for FEP but with two able-bodied parents in the household. Eligible refugee households with two able-bodied parents and at least one dependent child, must first exhaust RRP benefits before considering eligibility for FEPTP.

(2) Families may only participate in this program for seven months out of any 13-month period. Months of participation count toward the 36-month time limit in Sections 35A-3-306 and R986-200-217.

(3) Both parents must participate in eligible activities for a combined total of 60 hours per week, as defined in the employment plan. At least 50 of those hours must be in priority activities. A list of approved priority and eligible activities is available at each employment center. Refugee families may participate in any combination of eligible and priority activities for a combined total of 60 hours per week, as provided in the employment plan.

(4) Both parents are required to participate every week as defined in the employment plan, unless the parent can establish reasonable cause for not participating. Reasonable cause is defined in rule R986-200-212(8),

(5) Payment is made twice per month and only after proof of participation. Payment is based on the number of hours of participation by both parents. The amount of assistance is equal to the FEP payment for the household size prorated based on the number of hours which the parents participated up to a maximum of 60 hours of participation per week. In no event can the financial assistance payment per month for a FEPTP household be more than for the same size household participating in FEP.

(6) If it is determinated by the employment counselor that either one of the parents has failed to participate to the maximum extent possible assistance for the entire household unit will terminate immediately.

(7) Because payment is made after performance, advance notice is not required to terminate or reduce assistance payments for households participating in FEPTP.

(8) The parents must meet all other requirements of FEP including but not limited to, income and asset limits, cooperation with ORS if there are legally responsible persons outside of the household assistance unit, signing a participation agreement and employment plan and applying for all other assistance or benefits to which they might be entitled.

R986-200-216. Diversion.

(1) Diversion is a one-time financial assistance payment provided to help a client avoid receiving extended cash assistance.

(2) In determining whether a client should receive diversion assistance, the Department will consider the following:

(a) the applicant's employment history;

(b) the likelihood that the applicant will obtain immediate full-time employment;

(c) the applicant's housing stability; and

(d) the applicant's child care needs, if applicable.

(3) To be eligible for diversion the applicant must;

(a) have a need for financial assistance to pay for housing or substantial and unforseen expenses or work related expenses which cannot be met with current or anticipated resources;

(b) show that within the diversion period, the applicant will be employed or have other specific means of self support, and

(c) meet all eligibility criteria for a FEP financial assistance payment except the applicant does not need to cooperate with ORS in obtaining support. If the client is applying for other assistance such as medical or child care, the client will have to follow the eligibility rules for that type of assistance which may require cooperation with ORS.

(4) If the Department and the client agree diversion is appropriate, the client must sign a diversion agreement listing conditions, expectations and participation requirements.

(5) The diversion payment will equal three times the monthly financial assistance payment for the household size. All income expected to be received during the three-month period including wages and child support must be considered when negotiating diversion.

(6) Child support will belong to the client during the three-month period, whether received by the client directly or collected by ORS. ORS will not use the child support to offset or reimburse the diversion payment.

(7) The client must agree to have the financial assistance portion of the application for assistance denied.

(8) If a diversion payment is made, the client is ineligible for FEP for the three months covered by the diversion payment and must reapply at the end of the three month period.

(9) Diversion assistance is not available to clients participating in FEPTP. This is because FEPTP is based on performance and payment can only be made after performance.

(10) A household can only receive one diversion assistance payment in a 12 month period.

R986-200-217. Time Limits.

(1) Except as provided in R986-200-218 and in Section 35A-3-306, a family cannot receive financial assistance under the FEP or FEPTP for more than 36 months.

(2) The following months count toward the 36-month time limit regardless of whether the financial assistance payment was made in this or any other state:

(a) each month when a parent client received financial assistance beginning with the month of January, 1997;

(b) each month beginning with January, 1997, where a parent resided in the household, the parent's income and assets were counted in determining the household's eligibility, but the parent was disqualified from being included in the financial payment. Disqualification occurs when a parent has been determined to have committed fraud in the receipt of public assistance or when the parent is an ineligible alien; and

(c) each month when financial assistance was reduced or a partial financial assistance payment was received beginning with the month of January, 1997.

(3) Months which do not count toward the 36 month time limit are:

(a) months where both parents were absent from the home and dependent children were cared for by a specified relative who elected to be excluded from the household unit;

(b) months where the client received financial assistance as a minor child and was not the head of a household or married to the head of a household;

(c) months during which the parent lived in Indian country, as defined in Title 18, Section 1151, United States Code 1999, or an Alaskan Native village, if the most reliable data available with respect to the month, or a period including the month, indicate that at least 50% of the adults living in Indian country or in the village were not employed;

(d) months when a parent resided in the home but were excluded from the household assistance unit. A parent is excluded when they receive SSI benefits;

(e) diversion assistance does not count toward the 36 month time limit. If a client has already used 36 months of financial assistance, the client is not eligible for diversion assistance unless the client meets one of the extension criteria in R986-200-218 in addition to all other eligibility criteria of diversion assistance; or

(f) months when a parent client received transitional assistance.

R986-200-218. Exceptions to the Time Limit.

Exceptions to the time limit may be allowed for up to 20% of the average monthly number of families receiving financial assistance from FEP and FEPTP during the previous Federal fiscal year for the following reasons:

(1) A hardship under Section 35A-3-306 is determined to exist when a parent:

(a) is determined to be medically unable to work. The client must provide proof of inability to work in one of the following ways:

(i) receipt of disability benefits from SSA;

(ii) receipt of VA Disability benefits based on the parent being 100% disabled;

(iii) placement on the Division of Services to People with Disabilities' waiting list. Being on the waiting list indicates the person has met the criteria for a disability; or

(iv) is currently receiving Temporary Total or Permanent Total disability Workers' Compensation benefits;

(v) a medical statement completed by a medical doctor, a licensed Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, a licensed Physician's Assistant, or a doctor of osteopathy, stating the parent has a medical condition supported by medical evidence, which prevents the parent from engaging in work activities capable of generating income of at least $500 a month. The statement must be completed by a professional skilled in both the diagnosis and treatment of the condition; or

(vi) a statement completed by a licensed clinical social worker, licensed psychologist, licensed Mental Health Therapist as defined in UCA Section 58-60-102, or psychiatrist stating that the parent has been diagnosed with a mental health condition that prevents the parent from engaging in work activities capable of generating income of at least $500 a month. Substance abuse is considered the same as mental health condition;

(b) is under age 19 through the month of their nineteenth birthday;

(c) is currently engaged in an approved full-time job preparation activity which the parent was expected to complete within the 36 month time limit but completion within the 36 months was not possible through no fault of the parent;

(d) was without fault and a delay in the delivery of services provided by the Department occurred. The delay must have had an adverse effect on the parent causing a hardship and preventing the parent from obtaining employment. An extension under this section cannot be granted for more than the length of the delay;

(e) moved to Utah after exhausting 36 months of assistance in another state or states and the parent did not receive supportive services in that state or states as required under the provisions of PRWORA. To be eligible for an exception under this section, the failure to receive supportive services must have occurred through no fault of the parent and must contribute to the parent's inability to work. An exception under this section can never be for longer than the delay in services;

(f) completed an educational or training program at the 36th month and needs additional time to obtain employment;

(g) is unable to work because the parent is required in the home to meet the medical needs of a dependent. Dependent for the purposes of this paragraph means a person who the parent claims as a dependent on his or her income tax filing. Proof, consisting of a medical statement from a health care professional listed in subparagraph (1)(a)(v) or (vi) of this section is required unless the dependent is on the Travis C medicaid waiver program. The medical statement must include all of the following:

(i) the diagnosis of the dependent's condition,

(ii) the recommended treatment needed or being received for the condition,

(iii) the length of time the parent will be required in the home to care for the dependent, and

(iv) whether the parent is required to be in the home full-time or part-time; or

(h) is currently receiving assistance under one of the exceptions in this section and needs additional time to obtain employment. A client can only receive assistance for one month under this subparagraph. If the Department determines that granting an exception under this subparagraph adversely impacts its federally mandated participation rate requirements or might otherwise jeopardize its funding, the one month exception will not be granted;

(i) the client is currently participating in the Intergenerational Welfare Dependency Poverty Pilot Program, "Next Generation Kids" and needs additional time to obtain job training and preparation to decrease the risk of his/her children being part of intergenerational welfare dependency. This exception will not be available if the Pilot Program is to end; or

(j) parents who volunteer to fully participate in a Department-approved employment and training activity. Department approval will only be granted if all the requirements of Department rule 986-200-211(1)(a) through (f) are met.

(2) Additional months of financial assistance may be provided if the family includes an individual who has been battered or subjected to extreme cruelty which is a barrier to employment and the implementation of the time limit would make it more difficult to escape the situation. Battered or subjected to extreme cruelty means:

(a) physical acts which resulted in, or threatened to result in, physical injury to the individual;

(b) sexual abuse;

(c) sexual activity involving a dependent child;

(d) threats of, or attempts at, physical or sexual abuse;

(e) mental abuse which includes stalking and harassment; or

(f) neglect or deprivation of medical care.

(3) Employment extension. An extension to the time limit can be granted for a maximum of an additional 24 months if during the previous two months, the parent client was employed for no less than 20 hours per week. The employment can consist of self-employment if the parent's net income from that self-employment is at or above minimum wage.

(a) If, at the end of the 24-month extension, the parent client qualifies for an exception under subsections (1) or (2) of this section, an exception can be granted under the provisions of those sections.

(b) A family cannot receive financial assistance for more than a total of 60 months unless an exception can be granted under subsections (1) and (2) of this section.

(4) All clients receiving an extension or an exception must continue to participate, to the maximum extent possible, in an employment plan. This includes cooperating with ORS in the collection, establishment, and enforcement of child support and the establishment of paternity, if necessary.

(5) If a household filing unit contains more than one parent, and one parent has received at least 36 months of assistance as a parent, then the entire filing unit is ineligible unless both parents meet one of the exceptions or extension listed above. Both parents need not meet the same exception or extension.

(6) A family in which the only parent or both parents are ineligible aliens cannot be granted an extension under Section (3) above or for any of the reasons for an exception in Subsections (1)(c), (d), (e) or (f). This is because ineligible aliens are not legally able to work and supportive services for work, education and training purposes are inappropriate.

(7) A client who is no longer eligible for financial assistance may be eligible for other kinds of public assistance including SNAP, Child Care Assistance and medical coverage. The client must follow the appropriate application process to determine eligibility for assistance from those other programs.

(8) Exceptions and extensions are subject to a review at least once every six months.

R986-200-219. Emergency Assistance (EA) for Needy Families With Dependent Children.

(1) EA is provided in an effort to prevent homelessness. It is a payment which is limited to use for utilities and rent or mortgage.

(2) To be eligible for EA the family must meet all other FEP requirements except:

(a) the client need only meet the "gross income" test. Gross income which is available to the client must be equal to or less than 185% of the standard needs budget for the client's filing unit; and

(b) the client is not required to enter into an employment plan or cooperate with ORS in obtaining support.

(3) The client must be homeless, in danger of becoming homeless or having the utilities at the home cut off due to a crisis situation beyond the client's control. The client must show that:

(a) The family is facing eviction or foreclosure because of past due rent or mortgage payments or unpaid utility bills which result from the crisis;

(b) A one-time EA payment will enable the family to obtain or maintain housing or prevent the utility shut off while they overcome the temporary crisis;

(c) Assistance with one month's rent or mortgage payment is enough to prevent the eviction, foreclosure or termination of utilities;

(d) The client has the ability to resolve past due payments and pay future months' rent or mortgage payments and utility bills after resolution of the crisis; and

(e) The client has exhausted all other resources.

(4) Emergency assistance is available for only 30 consecutive days during a year to any client or that client's household. If, for example, a client receives an EA payment of $450 for rent on April 1 and requests an additional EA payment of $300 for utilities on or before April 30 of that same year, the request for an EA payment for utilities will be considered. If the request for an additional payment for utilities is made after April 30, it cannot be considered for payment. The client will not be eligible for another EA payment until April 1 of the following year. A year is defined as 365 days following the initial date of payment of EA.

(5) Payments will not exceed $450 per family for one month's rent payment or $700 per family for one month's mortgage payment, and $300 for one month's utilities payment.

R986-200-220. Mentors.

(1) The Department will recruit and train volunteers to serve as mentors for parent clients. The Department may elect to contract for the recruitment and training of the volunteers.

(2) A mentor may advocate on behalf of a parent client and help a parent client:

(a) develop life skills;

(b) implement an employment plan; or

(c) obtain services and support from:

(i) the volunteer mentor;

(ii) the Department; or

(iii) civic organizations.

R986-200-221. Drug Testing Requirements.

(1) A parent client or specified relative who is counted in the household assistance unit under R986-200-205 must complete a substance abuse questionnaire. A substance abuse questionnaire is defined as a written screening questionnaire designed to accurately determine the reasonable likelihood of the client having a substance use disorder involving the misuse of a controlled substance. Individuals in the household who have been disqualified from the receipt of assistance because of an IPV are also required to complete a substance abuse questionnaire and otherwise comply with this section.

(2) If the results of the substance abuse questionnaire indicate a reasonable likelihood of a substance use disorder involving the misuse of a controlled substance, a drug test is required within a period of time as specified by the Department. The test will be administered with due regard to the privacy and dignity of the person being tested. Before or after taking the drug test, the client may advise the person administering the test of any prescription or any over the counter medication the client is taking.

(3) If the client tests positive for the unlawful use of a controlled substance on the drug test required under subsection (2), benefits may continue but only if the client agrees to receive treatment from a Department approved provider. The treatment will be for a minimum of 60 days and the client must also submit to drug tests during, and at the conclusion of, treatment. Each test must be negative. The length of treatment, if over 60 days, will be determined by the treatment provider and the Department. The client cannot change treatment providers unless the treatment provider and the Department agree to the change.

(4) The entire household unit will be denied financial assistance for a period of three months for the first occurrence and 12 months for any subsequence occurrence within a 12 month period if a client identified in subsection (1):

(a) refuses to complete a substance abuse questionnaire;

(b) refuses to meet with a licensed clinical therapist if required by the Department;

(c) refuses to take a drug test as required in subsection (2) or (3) of this section,

(d) fails to enter and successfully complete treatment as required in subsection (3) of this section, or

(e) tests positive for the unlawful use of a controlled substance, on any subsequent drug test required by the Department, while in treatment or at the completion of treatment.

(5) A client can be excused from complying with the requirements of this section if the necessary resources are not available through no fault of the client.

(6) A client can be excused from complying with the requirements of this section in a timely manner if the client can show reasonable cause. Reasonable cause under this section means the client was prevented from complying in a timely manner through no fault of his or her own or failed to comply in a timely manner for reasons that are reasonable and compelling.

(7) If a client disagrees with the results of a drug test performed under subsections (2) or (3) of this section, the client can provide the Department with the results of a second drug test. This second drug test will be performed:

(i) at the client's expense,

(ii) at a testing facility approved by the Department,

(iii) in accordance with requirements of Utah Code Ann. Section 34-38-6, and

(iv) within seven days of the Department sending notice of the results of the original drug test.

(c) If the results of the second drug test are negative, the Department will reimburse the client the actual and reasonable verified costs incurred in obtaining the second test.

R986-200-230. Assets Counted in Determining Eligibility.

(1) All available assets, unless exempt, are counted in determining eligibility. An asset is available when the applicant or client owns it and has the ability and the legal right to sell it or dispose of it. An item is never counted as both income and an asset in the same month.

(2) The value of an asset is determined by its equity value. Equity value is the current market value less any debts still owing on the asset. Current market value is the asset's selling price on the open market as set by current standards of appraisal.

(3) Both real and personal property are considered assets. Real property is an item that is fixed, permanent, or immovable. This includes land, houses, buildings, mobile homes and trailer homes. Personal property is any item other than real property.

(4) If an asset is potentially available, but a legal impediment to making it available exists, it is exempt until it can be made available. The applicant or client must take appropriate steps to make the asset available unless:

(a) Reasonable action would not be successful in making the asset available; or

(b) The probable cost of making the asset available exceeds its value.

(5) The value of countable real and personal property cannot exceed $2,000.

(6) If the household assets are below the limits on the first day of the month the household is eligible for the remainder of the month.

R986-200-231. Assets That Are Not Counted (Exempt) for Eligibility Purposes.

The following are not counted as an asset when determining eligibility for financial assistance:

(1) the home in which the family lives, and its contents, unless any single item of personal property has a value over $1,000, then only that item is counted toward the $2,000 limit. If the family owns more than one home, only the primary residence is exempt and the equity value of the other home is counted;

(2) the value of the lot on which the home stands is exempt if it does not exceed the average size of residential lots for the community in which it is located. The value of the property in excess of an average size lot is counted if marketable;

(3) water rights attached to the home property are exempt;

(4) motorized vehicles;

(5) with the exception of real property, the value of income producing property necessary for employment;

(6) the value of any reasonable assistance received for post-secondary education;

(7) bona fide loans, including reverse equity loans;

(8) per capita payments or any asset purchased with per capita payments made to tribal members by the Secretary of the Interior or the tribe. Any asset purchased with profit distributions or income to tribal members derived from tribal owned casinos and privately owned land is countable;

(9) maintenance items essential to day-to-day living;

(10) life estates;

(11) an irrevocable trust where neither the corpus nor income can be used for basic living expenses;

(12) for refugees, as defined under R986-300-303(1), assets that remain in the refugee's country of origin are not counted;

(13) one burial plot per member of the household. A burial plot is a burial space and any item related to repositories used for the remains of the deceased. This includes caskets, concrete vaults, urns, crypts, grave markers, etc. If the individual owns a grave site, the value of which includes opening and closing, the opening and closing is also exempt;

(14) a burial/funeral fund up to a maximum of $1,500 per member of the household;

(a) The value of any irrevocable burial trust is subtracted from the $1,500 burial/funeral fund exemption. If the irrevocable burial trust is valued at $1,500 or more, it reduces the burial/funeral fund exemption to zero.

(b) After deducting any irrevocable burial trust, if there is still a balance in the burial/funeral fund exemption amount, the remaining exemption is reduced by the cash value of any burial contract, funeral plan, or funds set aside for burial up to a maximum of $1,500. Any amount over $1,500 is considered an asset;

(15) any interest which is accrued on an exempt burial contract, funeral plan, or funds set aside for burial is exempt as income or assets. If an individual removes the principal or interest and uses the money for a purpose other than the individual's burial expenses, the amount withdrawn is countable income; and

(16) any other property exempt under federal law.

R986-200-232. Considerations in Evaluating Real Property.

(1) Any nonexempt real property that an applicant or client is making a bona fide effort to sell is exempt for a nine-month period provided the applicant or client agrees to repay, from the proceeds of the sale, the amount of financial and/or child care assistance received. Bona fide effort to sell means placing the property up for sale at a price no greater than the current market value. Additionally, to qualify for this exemption, the applicant or client must assign, to the state of Utah, a lien against the real property under consideration. If the property is not sold during the period of time the client was receiving financial and/or child care assistance or if the client loses eligibility for any reason during the nine-month period, the lien will not be released until repayment of all financial and/or child care assistance is made.

(2) Payments received on a sales contract for the sale of an exempt home are not counted if the entire proceeds are committed to replacement of the property sold within 30 days of receipt and the purchase is completed within 90 days. If more than 90 days is needed to complete the actual purchase, one 90-day extension may be granted. Proceeds are defined as all payments made on the principal of the contract. Proceeds do not include interest earned on the principal which is counted as income.

R986-200-233. Considerations in Evaluating Household Assets.

(1) The assets of a disqualified household member are counted.

(2) The assets of a ward that are controlled by a legal guardian are considered available to the ward.

(3) The assets of an ineligible child are exempt.

(4) When an ineligible alien is a parent, the assets of that alien parent are counted in determining eligibility for other family members.

(5) Certain aliens who have been legally admitted to the United States for permanent residence must have the income and assets of their sponsors considered in determining eligibility for financial assistance under applicable federal authority in accordance with R986-200-243.

R986-200-234. Income Counted in Determining Eligibility.

(1) The amount of financial assistance is based on the household's monthly income and size.

(2) Household income means the payment or receipt of countable income from any source to any member counted in the household assistance unit including:

(a) children; and

(b) people who are disqualified from being counted because of a prior determination of fraud (IPV) or because they are an ineligible alien.

(3) The income of SSI recipients is not counted.

(4) Countable income is gross income, whether earned or unearned, less allowable exclusions listed in section R986-200-239.

(5) Money is not counted as income and an asset in the same month.

(6) If an individual has elected to have a voluntary reduction or deduction taken from an entitlement to earned or unearned income, the voluntary reduction or deduction is counted as gross income. Voluntary reductions include insurance premiums, savings, and garnishments to pay an owed obligation.

R986-200-235. Unearned Income.

(1) Unearned income is income received by an individual for which the individual performs no service.

(2) Countable unearned income includes:

(a) pensions and annuities such as Railroad Retirement, Social Security, VA, Civil Service;

(b) disability benefits such as sick pay and workers' compensation payments unless considered as earned income;

(c) unemployment insurance, except, starting March 1, 2009 and continuing as long as it is authorized by Congress and not counted for SNAP, the $25 supplemental weekly Unemployment Compensation payment authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) will not be countable unearned income;

(d) strike or union benefits;

(e) VA allotment;

(f) income from the GI Bill;

(g) assigned support retained in violation of statute is counted when a request to do so has been generated by ORS;

(h) payments received from trusts made for basic living expenses;

(i) payments of interest from stocks, bonds, savings, loans, insurance, a sales contract, or mortgage. This applies even if the payments are from the sale of an exempt home. Payments made for the down payment or principal are counted as assets;

(j) inheritances;

(k) life insurance benefits;

(l) payments from an insurance company or other source for personal injury, interest, or destroyed, lost or stolen property unless the money is used to replace that property;

(m) cash contributions from any source including family, a church or other charitable organization;

(n) rental income if the rental property is managed by another individual or company for the owner. Income from rental property managed by someone in the household assistance unit is considered earned income;

(o) financial assistance payments received from another state or the Department from another type of financial assistance program including a diversion payment; and

(p) payments from Job Corps and Americorps living allowances.

(3) Unearned income which is not counted (exempt):

(a) cash gifts for special occasions which do not exceed $30 per quarter for each person in the household assistance unit. The gift can be divided equally among all members of the household assistance unit;

(b) bona fide loans, including reverse equity loans on an exempt property. A bona fide loan means a loan which has been contracted in good faith without fraud or deceit and genuinely endorsed in writing for repayment;

(c) the value of SNAP, food donated from any source, and the value of vouchers issued under the Women Infants and Children program;

(d) any per capita payments made to individual tribal members by either the secretary of interior or the tribe are excluded. Profit distributions or income to tribal members derived from tribal owned casinos and privately owned land are countable income;

(e) any payments made to household members that are declared exempt under federal law;

(f) the value of governmental rent and housing subsidies, federal relocation assistance, or EA issued by the Department;

(g) money from a trust fund to provide for or reimburse the household for a specific item NOT related to basic living expenses. This includes medical expenses and educational expenses. Money from a trust fund to provide for or reimburse a household member for basic living expenses is counted;

(h) travel and training allowances and reimbursements if they are directly related to training, education, work, or volunteer activities;

(i) all unearned income in-kind. In-kind means something, such as goods or commodities, other than money;

(j) thirty dollars of the income received from rental income unless greater expenses can be proven. Expenses in excess of $30 can be allowed for:

(i) taxes;

(ii) attorney fees expended to make the rental income available;

(iii) upkeep and repair costs necessary to maintain the current value of the property; and

(iv) interest paid on a loan or mortgage made for upkeep or repair. Payment on the principal of the loan or mortgage cannot be excluded;

(k) if meals are provided to a roomer/boarder, the value of a one-person SNAP allotment for each roomer/boarder;

(l) payments for energy assistance including H.E.A.T payments, assistance given by a supplier of home energy, and in-kind assistance given by a private non-profit agency;

(m) federal and state income tax refunds and earned income tax credit payments;

(n) payments made by the Department to reimburse the client for education or work expenses, or a CC subsidy;

(o) income of an SSI recipient. Neither the payment from SSI nor any other income, including earned income, of an SSI recipient is included;

(p) payments from a person living in the household who is not included in the household assistance unit, as defined in R986-200-205, when the payment is intended and used for that person's share of the living expenses;

(q) educational assistance and college work study except Veterans Education Assistance intended for family members of the student, living stipends and money earned from an assistantship program is counted as income; and

(r) for a refugee, as defined in R986-300-303(1), any grant or assistance, whether cash or in-kind, received directly or indirectly under the Reception and Placement Programs of Department of State or Department of Justice.

R986-200-236. Earned Income.

(1) All earned income is counted when it is received even if it is an advance on wages, salaries or commissions.

(2) Countable earned income includes:

(a) wages, except Americorps*Vista living allowances are not counted;

(b) salaries;

(c) commissions;

(d) tips;

(e) sick pay which is paid by the employer;

(f) temporary disability insurance or temporary workers' compensation payments which are employer funded and made to an individual who remains employed during recuperation from a temporary illness or injury pending the employee's return to the job;

(g) rental income only if managerial duties are performed by the owner to receive the income. The number of hours spent performing those duties is not a factor. If the property is managed by someone other than the individual, the income is counted as unearned income;

(h) net income from self-employment less allowable expenses, including income over a period of time for which settlement is made at one given time. The periodic payment is annualized prospectively. Examples include the sale of farm crops, livestock, and poultry. A client may deduct actual, allowable expenses, or may opt to deduct 40% of the gross income from self-employment to determine net income;

(i) training incentive payments and work allowances; and

(j) earned income of dependent children, unless the child is participating in required employment or training activities.

(3) Income that is not counted as earned income:

(a) income for an SSI recipient;

(b) reimbursements from an employer for any bona fide work expense;

(c) allowances from an employer for travel and training if the allowance is directly related to the travel or training and identifiable and separate from other countable income; or

(d) Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) payments.

R986-200-237. Lump Sum Payments.

(1) Lump sum payments are one-time windfalls or retroactive payments of earned or unearned income. Lump sums include but are not limited to, inheritances, insurance settlements, awards, winnings, gifts, and severance pay, including when a client cashes out vacation, holiday, and sick pay. They also include lump sum payments from Social Security, VA, UI, Worker's Compensation, and other one-time payments. Payments from SSA that are paid out in installments are not considered lump sum payments but as income, even if paid less often than monthly.

(2) The following lump sum payments are not counted as income or assets:

(a) any kind of lump sum payment of excluded earned or unearned income. If the income would have been excluded, the lump sum payment is also excluded. This includes SSI payments and any EITC; and

(b) insurance settlements for destroyed exempt property when used to replace that property.

(3) The net lump sum payment is counted as income for the month it is received. Any amount remaining after the end of that month is considered an asset.

(4) The net lump sum is the portion of the lump sum that is remaining after deducting:

(a) legal fees expended in the effort to make the lump sum available;

(b) payments for past medical bills if the lump sum was intended to cover those expenses; and

(c) funeral or burial expenses, if the lump sum was intended to cover funeral or burial expenses.

(5) A lump sum paid to an SSI recipient is not counted as income or an asset except for those recipients receiving financial assistance from GA or WTE.

R986-200-238. How to Calculate Income.

(1) To determine if a client is eligible for, and the amount of, a financial assistance payment, the Department estimates the anticipated income, assets and household size for each month in the certification period.

(2) The methods used for estimating income are:

(a) income averaging or annualizing which means using a history of past income that is representative of future income and averaging it to determine anticipated future monthly income. It may be necessary to evaluate the history of past income for a full year or more; and

(b) income anticipating which means using current facts such as rate of pay and hourly wage to anticipate future monthly income when no reliable history is available.

(3) Monthly income is calculated by multiplying the average weekly income by 4.3 weeks. If a client is paid every two weeks, the income for those two weeks is multiplied by 2.15 weeks to determine monthly income.

(4) The Department's estimate of income, when based on the best available information at the time it was made, will be determined to be an accurate reflection of the client's income. If it is later determined the actual income was different than the estimate, no adjustment will be made. If the client notifies the Department of a change in circumstances affecting income, the estimated income can be adjusted prospectively but not retrospectively.

R986-200-239. How to Determine the Amount of the Financial Assistance Payment.

(1) Once the household's size and income have been determined, the gross countable income must be less than or equal to 185% of the Standard Needs Budget (SNB) for the size of the household. This is referred to as the "gross test".

(2) If the gross countable income is less than or equal to 185% of the SNB, the following deductions are allowed:

(a) a work expense allowance of $100 for each person in the household unit who is employed;

(b) fifty percent of the remaining earned income after deducting the work expense allowance as provided in paragraph (a) of this subsection, if the individual has received a financial assistance payment from the Department for one or more of the immediately preceding four months; and

(c) after deducting the amounts in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this subsection, if appropriate, the following deductions can be made:

(i) a dependent care deduction as described in subsection (3) of this section; and

(ii) child support paid by a household member if legally owed to someone not included in the household.

(3) The amount of the dependant care deduction is set by the Department and based on the number of hours worked by the parent and the age of the dependant needing care. It can only be deducted if the dependant care:

(a) is paid for the care of a child or adult member of the household assistance unit, or a child or adult who would be a member of the household assistance unit except that this person receives SSI. An adult's need for care must be verified by a doctor; and

(b) is not subsidized, in whole or in part, by a CC payment from the Department; and

(c) is not paid to an individual who is in the household assistance unit.

(4) After deducting the amounts allowed under paragraph (2) above, the resulting net income must be less than 100% of SNB for size of the household assistance unit. If the net income is equal to or greater than the SNB, the household is not eligible.

(5) If the net income is less than 100% of the SNB the following amounts are deducted:

(a) Fifty percent of earned countable income for all employed household assistance unit members if the household was not eligible for the 50% deduction under paragraph (2)(b) above; and/or

(b) All of the earned income of all children in the household assistance unit, if not previously deducted, who are:

(i) in school or training full-time, or

(ii) in part-time education or training if they are employed less than 100 hours per month. "Part-time education or training" means enrolled for at least one-half the number of hours or periods considered by the institution to be customary to complete the course of study within the minimum time period. If no schedule is set by the school, the course of study must be no less than an average of two class periods or two hours per day, whichever is less.

(6) The resulting net countable income is compared to the full financial assistance payment for the household size. If the net countable income is more than the financial assistance payment, the household is not eligible. If it is less, the net countable income is deducted from the financial assistance payment and the household is paid the difference.

(7) The amount of the standard financial assistance payment is set by the Department. The current amount is in the table that follows:

                                                     TABLE

Household Size               Payment Amount

         1                       $288
         2                       $399
         3                       $498
         4                       $583
         5                       $663
         6                       $731
         7                       $765
         8                       $801
                                                            

Amounts for household sizes larger than 8 are available at all Department offices.

R986-200-240. Additional Payments Available Under Certain Circumstances.

(1) Each parent eligible for financial assistance in the FEP or FEPTP programs who takes part in at least one enhanced participation activity may be eligible to receive a payment to help defray the costs of that activity in addition to the standard financial assistance payment. Approved enhanced participation activities and the payment amount are listed in Department policy.

(2) An additional payment of $15 per month for a pregnant woman in the third month prior to the expected month of delivery. Eligibility for the allowance begins in the month the woman provides medical proof that she is in the third month prior to the expected month of delivery. The pregnancy allowance ends at the end of the month the pregnancy ends.

(3) A limited number of funds are available to individuals for work and training expenses. The funds can only be used to alleviate circumstances which impede the individual's ability to begin or continue employment, job search, training, or education. The payment of these funds is completely discretionary by the Department. The individual does not need to meet any eligibility requirements to request or receive these funds.

(4) Limited funds are available, up to a maximum of $300, to pay for burial costs if the individual is not entitled to a burial paid for by the county.

(5) A Department Regional Director or designee may approve assistance, as funding allows, for the emergency needs of a non-resident who is transient, temporarily stranded in Utah, and who does not intend to stay in Utah.

(6) A limited number of funds are available for enhanced payments to parents who are eligible for financial assistance in the FEP program or who are eligible for TANF non-FEP training under R986-200-245 and who participate in the HS/GED Pilot Program. The payment of these funds is completely discretionary by the Department and may differ from region to region. The payments may continue until the client completes the HS/GED Pilot Program even if the client is no longer receiving FEP.

R986-200-241. Income Eligibility Calculation for a Specified Relative Who Wants to be Included in the Assistance Payment.

(1) The income calculation for a specified relative who wants to be included in the financial assistance payment is as follows:

(a) All earned and unearned countable income is counted, as determined by FEP rules, for the specified relative and his or her spouse, less the following allowable deductions:

(i) one hundred dollars for each employed person in the household. This deduction is only allowed for the specified relative and/or spouse and not anyone else in the household even if working; and

(ii) the child care expenses paid by the specified relative and necessary for employment up to the maximum allowable deduction as set by the Department.

(2) The household size is determined by counting the specified relative, his or her spouse if living in the home, and their dependent children living in the home who are not in the household assistance unit.

(3) If the income less deductions exceeds 100% of the SNB for a household of that size, the specified relative cannot be included in the financial assistance payment. If the income is less than 100% of the SNB, the total household income is divided by the household size calculated under subsection (2) of this section. This amount is deemed available to the specified relative as countable unearned income. If that amount is less than the maximum financial assistance payment for the household assistance unit size, the specified relative may be included in the financial assistance payment.

R986-200-242. Income Calculation for a Minor Parent Living with His or Her Parent or Stepparent.

(1) All earned and unearned countable income of all parents, including stepparents living in the home, is counted when determining the eligibility of a minor parent residing in the home of the parent(s).

(2) From that income, the following deductions are allowed:

(a) one hundred dollars from income earned by each parent or stepparent living in the home, and

(b) an amount equal to 100% of the SNB for a group with the following members:

(i) the parents or stepparents living in the home;

(ii) any other person in the home who is not included in the financial assistance payment of the minor parent and who is a dependent of the parents or stepparents;

(c) amounts paid by the parents or stepparents living in the home to individuals not living at home but who could be claimed as dependents for Federal income tax purposes; and

(d) alimony and child support paid to someone outside the home by the parents or stepparents living in the home.

(3) The resulting amount is counted as unearned income to the minor parent.

(4) If a minor parent lives in a household already receiving financial assistance, the child of the minor parent is included in the larger household assistance unit.

R986-200-243. Counting the Income of Sponsors of Eligible Aliens.

(1) Certain aliens who have been legally admitted into the United States for permanent residence must have a portion of the earned and unearned countable income of their sponsors counted as unearned income in determining eligibility and financial assistance payment amounts for the alien.

(2) The following aliens are not subject to having the income of their sponsor counted:

(a) paroled or admitted into the United States as a refugee or asylee;

(b) granted political asylum;

(c) admitted as a Cuban or Haitian entrant;

(d) other conditional or paroled entrants;

(e) not sponsored or who have sponsors that are organizations or institutions;

(f) sponsored by persons who receive public assistance or SSI;

(g) permanent resident aliens who were admitted as refugees and have been in the United States for eight months or less.

(3) Except as provided in subsection (7) of this section, the income of the sponsor of an alien who applies for financial assistance after April 1, 1983 and who has been legally admitted into the United States for permanent residence must be counted for five years after the entry date into the United States. The entry date is the date the alien was admitted for permanent residence. The time spent, if any, in the United States other than as a permanent resident is not considered as part of the five year period.

(4) The amount of income deemed available for the alien is calculated by:

(a) deducting 20% from the total earned income of the sponsor and the sponsor's spouse up to a maximum of $175 per month; then,

(b) adding to that figure all of the monthly unearned countable income of the sponsor and the sponsor's spouse; then the following deductions are allowed:

(i) an amount equal to 100% of the SNB amount for the number of people living in the sponsor's household who are or could be claimed as dependents under federal income tax policy; then,

(ii) actual payments made to people not living in the sponsor's household whom the sponsor claims or could claim as dependents under federal income tax policy; then,

(iii) actual payments of alimony and/or child support the sponsor makes to individuals not living in the sponsor's household.

(c) The remaining amount is counted as unearned income against the alien whether or not the income is actually made available to the alien.

(5) Actual payments by the sponsor to aliens will be counted as income only to the extent that the payment amount exceeds the amount of the sponsor's income already determined as countable.

(6) A sponsor can be held liable for an overpayment made to a sponsored alien if the sponsor was responsible for, or signed the documents which contained, the misinformation that resulted in the overpayment. The sponsor is not held liable for an overpayment if the alien fails to give accurate information to the Department or the sponsor is deceased, in prison, or can prove the request for information was incomplete or vague.

(7) In the case where the alien entered the United States after December 19, 1997, the sponsor's income does not count if:

(a) the alien becomes a United States citizen through naturalization;

(b) the alien has worked 40 qualifying quarters as determined by Social Security Administration; or

(c) the alien or the sponsor dies.

R986-200-244. TANF Needy Family (TNF).

(1) TNF is not a program but describes a population that can be served using TANF Surplus Funds.

(2) Eligible families must have a dependent child under the age of 18 residing in the home, and the total household income must not exceed 300% of the Federal poverty level. Income is determined as gross income without allowance for disregards.

(3) Services available vary throughout the state. Information on what is available in each region is available at each Employment Center. The Department may elect to contract out services.

(4) If TANF funded payments are made for basic needs such as housing, food, clothing, shelter, or utilities, each month a payment is received under TNF, counts as one month of assistance toward the 36 month lifetime limit. Basic needs also include transportation and child care if all adults in the household are unemployed and will count toward the 36 month lifetime limit.

(5) If a member of the household has used all 36 months of FEP assistance the household is not eligible for basic needs assistance under TNF but may be eligible for other TANF funded services.

(6) Assets are not counted when determining eligibility for TNF services.

R986-200-245. TANF Non-FEP Training (TNT).

(1) TNT is to provide skills and training to parents to help them become suitably employed and self-sufficient.

(2) The client must be unable to achieve self-sufficiency without training.

(3) Eligible families must have a dependent child under the age of 18 residing in the home and the total household income must not exceed 200% of the Federal poverty level. If the only dependent child is 18 and expected to graduate from High School before their 19th birthday the family is eligible up through the month of graduation. Income is counted and calculated the same as for WIOA as found in rule R986-600.

(4) Assets are not counted when determining eligibility for TNT services.

(5) The client must show need and appropriateness of training.

(6) The client must negotiate an employment plan with the Department and participate to the maximum extent possible.

(7) The Department will not pay for supportive services such as child care, transportation or living expenses under TNT. The Department can pay for books, tools, work clothes and other needs associated with training.

R986-200-246. Transitional Cash Assistance.

(1) Transitional Cash Assistance, (TCA) is offered to help FEP and FEPTP customers stabilize employment and reduce recidivism.

(2) To be eligible for TCA a client must;

(a) have been eligible for and have received FEP or FEPTP during the month immediately preceding the month during which TCA is requested or granted. The FEP or FEPTP assistance must have been terminated due to earned or earned and unearned income and not for nonparticipation under R986-200-212. If the immediately preceding month was during a diversion period, or the client has a termination pending due to non participation as provided in R986-200-212, the client is not eligible for TCA,

(b) be employed and

(i) have income greater than the FEP or FEP TP income guideline

(ii) the FEP or FEP TP assistance was terminated because of that income, and

(iii) the earned income exceeds the unearned income at the time the FEP or FEP TP was terminated, and

(c) continue to cooperate with the Office of Recovery Services, Child Support Enforcement.

(3) TCA is only available if the customer verifies income at the minimum required in subparagraph (2)(b) of this section.

(4) The TCA benefit is available for a maximum of three months in a 12 month period. The three months do not need to be consecutive.

(a) The assistance payment for the first two months of TCA is based on household size. All household income, earned and unearned, is disregarded.

(b) Payment for the third month is one half of the payment available in (4)(a) of this section.

(5) To receive the second and third month of the TCA benefit, the client must remain employed or have had an open FEP case that closed during the prior month due to income described in (2)(b) of this section.

(6) If initial verification is provided and a client is paid one month of TCA but the client is unable to provide documentation to support that initial verification, no further payments will be made under TCA but the one month payment will not result in an overpayment.

(7) TCA does not count toward the 36 month time limit found in R986-200-217.

R986-200-248. Wasatch Front North Service Area Pilot: FEP Subsidized Employment (FEP SE).

(1) FEP SE is a voluntary program providing short term subsidized employment for a maximum of three months to an eligible FEP recipient. FEP SE is a pilot program for Wasatch Front North Service Area but may be expanded to other service areas if funding permits. To be eligible, a FEP recipient must:

(a) be currently receiving FEP benefits and have received at least one FEP payment;

(b) have a current employment plan. If the client is working less than 30 hours per week, the employment plan must provide additional activities,

(c) be legally eligible to work in the U.S. and be a U.S. citizen or meet the alienage requirements of R986-200-203;

(d) have not worked for the employer where the client is to be hired under this program more than 40 hours in the 60 days immediately preceding the date of hire under the FEP SE program; and

(e) have not previously participated in the FEP SE program.

(2) An employer eligible for a subsidy under this section is an employer that:

(a) is registered with the Department's UI division as an active employer in "good standing". For the purposes of this section, "good standing" means the employer has no delinquent UI contributions or reports;

(b) is a "qualified employer" which is defined as any employer other than the United States, any State, or any political subdivision or instrumentality thereof. A public institution of higher education is considered a "qualified employer" for purposes of this section. The employer cannot be a Temporary Help Company as defined in R994-202-102 or a Professional Employer Organization as defined in R994-202-106;

(c) pays a wage of at least $8 per hour. Commission only jobs may qualify if the employer guarantees $8 per hour or more;

(d) has not displaced or partially displaced existing workers by participating in this program;

(e) has at least one other employee;

(f) will provide the client with at least 20 hours work per week; and

(g) does not hire the client for temporary or seasonal work.

(3) Once it has been verified that a FEP recipient has been hired, a qualified employer will be paid a $500 subsidy and an additional $1,500 subsidy at the conclusion of the third month of employment provided the required DWS invoices have been provided.

(4) FEP SE will continue for as long as funding is available.

R986-200-249. Access to Assistance.

Financial assistance for FEP and FEPTP is provided through an electronic benefit transfer (EBT) card. The card, instructions on its use, and applicable fees will be provided to all clients. A method for obtaining assistance without a fee will be made available. In other circumstances, minimal fees or/or surcharges will apply. Information about obtaining assistance without a fee or surcharge, when fees or surcharges apply, and the amount of the fee or surcharge is available on the Department's website: jobs.utah.gov.

KEY

family employment program, SNAP

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment

August 31, 2018

Notice of Continuation

September 2, 2015

Authorizing, Implemented, or Interpreted Law

35A-3-301 et seq.


Additional Information

Contact

For questions regarding the content or application of rules under Title R986, please contact the promulgating agency (Workforce Services, Employment Development). A list of agencies with links to their homepages is available at http://www.utah.gov/government/agencylist.html or from http://www.rules.utah.gov/contact/agencycontacts.htm.