Child Care Subsidy: UpdatedHousehold Composition & Income Consideration

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One of the primary tasks to be completed during the childcare application process is to determine which household members must be included on the case. Three types of possible household members need to be considered.

  • Parents
  • Caretakers
  • Children

Parents

All natural, adoptive, or step-parents must be included in the household. Parents who are temporarily absent from the home must be considered household members if they plan on returning to the home.

How do we look at their income?

The Parents income counts on the case, household composition includes them on Household tab as “income considered/individual not included (K/O)” in the benefit.


Caretakers

If a child is left with a caretaker who is not the natural, adoptive, or step-parent, they are not considered household members, unless there is a court order which states they are “legally and financially responsible” for the child. The court order must specifically state this in order for their income to count in determining eligibility. The caretaker does not have to have a legal or blood relationship to be considered a caretaker for child care.

How do we look at their income?

The caretaker who is not “legally and financially responsible” for child would have their income not used in the determination of benefits. They do, however, have to meet need factor in order to receive the Childcare subsidy benefit. The caretakers would be coded as “income and resources not considered, individual not included” (K/N) on the household tab.

In situations where an individual has legal guardianship of a child and the biological parent resides in the same household, the legal guardian may not apply for child care. When a parent resides in the same home as their child, the parent must apply for and be determined eligible in order to receive child care assistance. The caretaker/guardian is not included in the child care household.

We would only look at the parent’s income in this case, the case for legal guardian (not the parent) would need to be denied. Parent’s application would then be processed using all of the parent’s income to determine eligibility.


Children

All children in the household through 17 years of age must have their income included on the case.

Exception to this rule:

When a minor child is employed; his or her income does not count if he or she is attending school regularly.
In addition, minor parents and their children are considered their own households – any income of the minor parent’s siblings is not considered.

Note:

If client is adding a child to the benefit in between eligibility periods, we do not require a new application to be submitted as long as long as the child being added to the case is a required member of the household (such as a sibling to the other children). When a client requests care for a child who is not a required member of the current child care household (ex: niece, nephew, or grandchild) a new application is required. These are often placed on a separate case as they are often copay exempt due to the caretaker rules listed above.

Reminder:

All siblings, whether full or half siblings, cannot be separated from each other for household composition. As a result, all household members including unmarried parents with children in common must be included as a single family unit for both income consideration and need.

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