Child care hearings

On July 1, 2021, the following programs transferred from the California Department of Education to the California Department of Social Services (CDSS):

  • General Child Care and Development Programs (CCTR)
  • California Family Child Care Home Education Networks (CFCC)
  • Programs for Children with Severe Disabilities (CHAN)
  • Migrant Child Care and Development Programs (CMIG)
  • Migrant Child Care Alternative Payment Programs (CMAP)
  • California Alternative Payment Programs (CAPP)
  • CalWORKs Stage 2 (C2AP)
  • CalWORKs Stage 3 (C3AP)
  • Resource and Referral Programs (CRRP)
  • Local Child Care and Development Planning Councils (CLPC)

For these programs, the child care agency must include the CDSS Appeals Unit contact information on the notice.

The California Department of Education (CDE) will continue to administer the CSPP, Inclusive Early Education Expansion Program (IEEEP), American Indian Early Childhood Education (AIECE) grant, and Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership grant awarded to the CDE by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, as well as other early education programs.

For CSPP only, the agency must include the CDE Appeals Unit contact information.

When a family has children enrolled in both a CSPP and a CDSS program, the agency must issue two notices to the family: one for the child(ren) enrolled in the CSPP that includes the contact information for the CDE Appeals Unit, and a separate notice for the child(ren) enrolled in any non-CSPP program, that includes the contact information for the CDSS Appeals Unit.

CDE and CDSS will continue to develop agreements regarding processes and procedures for contractors who will hold contracts across both departments. Once those agreements have been finalized, the CDE and the CDSS will issue additional guidance to the field. (Child Care Bulletin 21-11, September 22, 2021.)

CalWORKs Increase to the Maximum Aid Payment

Effective October 1, 2021, Assembly Bill (AB) 135 grants a 5.3 percent increase to the CalWORKs Maximum Aid Payment (MAP). Recipients must be informed of the MAP increase by October 1st. The country welfare department computer systems must have the MAP increase programmed into their system by October 1st, and if not, they must manually issue the benefits increase. 

Under SB 380, children who receive child support in an amount more than the CalWORKs grant can opt-out of the CalWORKs case.  For some of these cases, the increase in the MAP will increase the CalWORKs payment to more than the child support paid.  In those cases, the family can ask to add the child to the CalWORKs case mid-period.  If the family does not ask for that mid-period change, the child will be added to the case at their following semi-annual report or annual recertification.  (ACL 21-87, August 18, 2021.)

60-Month Time Limit implementation

The California Department of Social Services informs counties of a change in implementation of the change in implementation of the 60-Month CalWORKs time limit.  To the extent inconsistent with this policy, ACL 20-113 is superceeded.

Parents who meet the following conditions will be added to their assistance unit (AU) when the 60-Month time limit is implemented on May 1, 2022 or when the county welfare department computer system can perform the necessary automation:

  • They are living in the home with existing an CalWORKs AU but are not aided because of the CalWORKs time on aid limit, and
  • They are mandatorily included in the filing unit and included in the most recent statement of facts; and
  • They are joining an existing AU mid-period because of the 60-month time limit; and
  • They have not used 60 months of CalWORKs.

Persons who meet these criteria are to be added to the AU as a county initiated mid-period change.  No statement of facts is required to add these family members.  Child support cooperation is waived for 60 days for these persons added to the household. If needed, counties can request additional information to make an eligibility determination.  However, this should be rare because these formerly timed out persons are already on the Statement of Facts and required to verify eligibility factors.

Timed out individuals are optional or new household members must be added to the AU under the policy in ACL 20-113.

These policies will remain in effect for 120 days after the 60-month time limit becomes effective.

Counties must distribute the TEMP 3022 informing notice to all CalWORKs at least 90 days before the 60-month time on aid limit is implemented. Counties must also provide the TEMP 3022 to applicants and recipients at intake and annual recertification.  (ACL 21-89, August 12, 2021.)

Eligibility of Afghan Humanitarian Parolees for Refugee Resettlement Program, CalWORKs, CalFresh and SSI

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has provided guidance regarding eligibility of Afghan Humanitarian Parolees Afghanistan for Refugee Resettlement Program, CalWORKs and CalFresh benefits.

Humanitarian Parolees are not eligible for Refugee Cash Assistance or any other Office of Refugee Resettlement programs.

Humanitarian Parolees are eligible for CalWORKs from the day they are paroled into the United States.

Humanitarian Parolees are not eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.  Humanitarian Parolees are eligible for Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants.

Humanitarian Parolees are eligible for CalFresh only if they have been paroled into the United States for at least one year, and, among other factors, have lived in the United States for qualified aliens, have 40 quarters of qualifying work, or are children under age 18.

Humanitarian Parolees are eligible for the California Food Assistance Program when the have been paroled into the United States for one year or more.

Regardless of documentation provided, the county must submit these cases to the SAVE system for immigration status verification. (ACWDL, September 3, 2021 and Errata, September 17, 2021.)

Eligibility of Afghan Special Immigrant Parolees for Refugee Resettlement Program, CalWORKs, CalFresh and SSI

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has provided guidance regarding eligibility of Special Immigrant Visa holders and special immigrant parolees in the SQ/SI categories (collectively called Special Immigrant Parolees) from Afghanistan for Refugee Resettlement Program, CalWORKs and CalFresh benefits.

Special Immigrant Parolees are eligible for Refugee Cash Assistance, Refugee Medical Assistance and other Office of Refugee Resettlement programs.  A Social Security Number is not required to be eligible for these programs.

Special Immigrant Parolees and their families are eligible for CalWORKs effective on their date of entry to the United States.

Special Immigrant Parolees are eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.  If for some reason Special Immigrant Parolees are found to be ineligible for SSI, the can be eligible for Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants.

Special Immigrant Parolees are immediately eligible for CalFresh.

Regardless of documentation provided, the county must submit these cases to the SAVE system for immigration status verification.  (ACWDL, August 30, 2021.)

CalWORKs Census Earned Income Exemption

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has provided guidance about the CalWORKs earned income exemption for work on the census.

All temporary work or stipends paid by the U.S Census Bureau, government entities, and non-profits related to the decennial census work will be exempt from CalWORKS. This changes from the previous guidance, which stated that only income or stipends earned the year proceeding and not income earned during the decennial census year is exempt.

This new revision exempts Census income regardless of the year paid. 

This exemption is retroactive Jan 1, 2021. (ACL 21-99, August 24, 2021.)