L. Evaluation of Verifications for CalWORKs Eligibility

 

Background

State regulations require the gathering and evaluation of verifications to determine CalWORKs eligibility.  See the appropriate CPG chapters (deprivation, age, property, income, residence) for specific and acceptable verification.

 

Applicant/
Recipient Responsibility for Verification

Applicant/recipient is responsible for:

·  Providing all necessary verifications in his/her possession or which may be obtained by him/her,

·  Cooperating in obtaining necessary verifications,

·  Providing written consent for the release of information when required to obtain necessary verification, and

·  Assuming responsibility for verification within his/her physical, emotional, educational, financial or other limitations.

 

HSS Responsibility for Verification

Human Services Specialist (HSS) is responsible for:

·  Informing applicant/recipient of verifications necessary to determine eligibility, why they are needed, how they will be used and when the verification or information must be provided,

·  Evaluating the capacity of the applicant/recipient to obtain necessary verification, 

·  Referring to the supervisor or management the review of the evaluation of capacity, when the capacity of the applicant/recipient cannot be readily determined or evaluated,

·  Providing applicant/recipient with information and direction which will assist them in obtaining necessary verification, and

·  Assisting applicant/recipient in obtaining necessary verification and paying any required third party fees if necessary only when the applicant/recipient is incapable of obtaining the verification due to physical, emotional, educational, financial, time or other limitations.  The limited capacity must be documented on the case narrative or SAWS 2.

 

Evaluating Verification

All verification necessary to determine eligibility must be obtained and evaluated to complete the application process.  Verification must be:

·  Evaluated with consideration of the motives and limitations of the person(s) or agency providing the verification to the applicant/recipient or directly to the HSS;

·  Evaluated for its consistency with general knowledge, information available on the eligibility factor being verified and all other case information; and

·  When verification is conflicting, inconsistent or incomplete, the HSS must pursue it until it does or does not support a determination of eligibility.

 

Note: This evaluation process may require the involvement of the Supervising HSS and/or district management.  The analysis must be clearly documented on the case narrative or on the verification.  This may include highlighting pertinent facts or listing reasons for the inadequacy of the verification.

 

Failure to Cooperate in Providing Verification Information

Failure to cooperate is defined as an assumed intent not to provide evidence or undertake necessary action as shown by the absence of performance over time.  Failure to cooperate exists when an act of “refusal” to cooperate has not occurred, but the applicant has failed to provide verifications or undertake actions within the timeframe established for the request. 

 

HSS is responsible for notifying the applicant/recipient of when verification or information must be provided to the HSS.  Denial or discontinuance actions for failure to cooperate should not be initiated prior to expiration of the stated time period per CPG.  The denial/discontinuance notice of action must specifically state what verification/information was not provided, and the regulations, which require the verification/information.

 

Example:

The applicant is told during the intake interview that an estimate is needed to establish property value of a motor vehicle.  The applicant agrees to obtain and submit the verification by the 10th day after the interview.  The applicant fails to return the verifications or contact the HSS.  The HSS sends a letter and gives the applicant an additional 10 days to provide the requested information.  The applicant fails to respond.  The HSS denies the application for failure to cooperate. 

 

Refusal  to Cooperate/
Provide Verification

Refusal to cooperate is defined as an active expression of intent not to provide verifications or undertake necessary actions.  A denial based on refusal to cooperate will be made when the applicant either orally or in writing states that he/she will not provide the requested verification. 

 

The HSS will deny an application for refusal to cooperate when applicant has actively expressed refusal to cooperate.  When the case is denied/discontinued as a result of the applicant’s refusal to comply, the NOA must indicate that refusal.  In addition, an explanation of the refusal to cooperate must be included in the narrative.  The HSS will document the refusal and request a written statement from the applicant.

 

Refusal to cooperate also applies when an applicant fails to return the requested verification for which he/she received a check made for a third party fee to obtain the verification.