Within available funding, the department shall make assistance available to eligible families under the family investment program. At a minimum, a family shall meet all of the following conditions of eligibility:
1. Application. An application for the program is made to the department. The application shall be in writing or reduced to writing in the manner and upon the form prescribed by the department. The application shall be made by the specified relative with whom the child resides or will reside, and shall contain the information required on the application form. One application may be made for several children of the same family if the children reside or will reside with the same specified relative.
2. Income and resources. The family meets income and resource guidelines established by the department to attain or retain financial eligibility. In determining a family's income and resources, the department shall consider the income and resources of the child, the child's parent, the child's stepparent living with the child, or any other specified relative with whom the child resides or will reside available to the family unless specifically exempted as provided in section 239B.7 or by rule or unless otherwise provided by federal law. A family's failure to meet the income or resource guidelines shall result in denial of the family's eligibility for the program.
3. Unemployment. A determination of eligibility for a family with an unemployed parent shall not include consideration of either parent's number of hours of employment except to establish the date assistance would begin in accordance with rules. However, both parents must enter into and participate in a family investment agreement and participate in JOBS program activities unless good cause not to participate is established in accordance with rules. For the purposes of this chapter, an applicant family with a parent who is partially or totally unemployed under any of the following circumstances shall not be considered to be unemployed:
a. The period of unemployment is less than thirty days prior to commencing participation under this chapter.
b. The parent is partially or totally unemployed due to a work stoppage which exists because of a labor dispute at the factory, establishment, or other premises at which the parent is or was last employed.
c. At any time during the thirty-day period prior to commencing participation under this chapter, the parent has not been available for employment, has not actively sought employment, or has without good cause refused any bona fide offer of employment or training for employment. Any of the following reasons for refusing employment or training are not good cause:
(1) Unsuitable or unpleasant work or training, if the parent is able to perform the work or training without unusual danger to the parent's health.
(2) The amount of wages or compensation, unless the wages for employment are below the amount customary for the same work in the community.
d. The parent has not registered for work with the state employment service established pursuant to section 96.12, or after registration has failed to report at an employment office in accordance with regulations prescribed pursuant to section 96.4, subsection 1.
e. The parent is eligible but refuses to apply for or to draw upon unemployment benefits.
f. The parent or family fails to meet other requirements adopted by the department applicable to the applicant parent or family. The other requirements shall be limited to those necessary to meet federal requirements and may be in addition to or in lieu of the requirements of this subsection, for eligibility under this chapter to children whose parents are partially or totally unemployed.
4. Written statement--family investment agreement.
a. The department may require an applicant family to commit to the initial actions the applicant family will take to achieve self-sufficiency as contained in a signed, written statement. An applicant family which fails to commit to the actions as contained in the written statement shall be denied eligibility for the family investment program. If the applicant family becomes a participant family, the family's written statement may be replaced by, incorporated within, or become the family investment agreement for that family.
b. Unless exempt as provided in section 239B.8, a participant family which is eligible for the program shall continue to comply with the provisions of a written statement which contains actions committed to by the family under paragraph "a" or shall enter into a family investment agreement with the department. A participant family must comply with the provisions of the written statement or the conditions in the agreement in order to retain eligibility. A participant family which does not comply shall be deemed to have chosen a limited benefit plan.
5. Provision of information. The family provides requested information to the department. The department shall adopt rules specifying the conditions under which an applicant or participant family is denied eligibility for family investment program assistance for failure to provide requested information.
6. Cooperation with child support requirements. The department shall provide for prompt notification of the department's child support recovery unit if assistance is provided to a child whose parent is absent from the home. An applicant or participant shall cooperate with the child support recovery unit and the department as provided in 42 U.S.C. § 608(a)(2) unless the applicant or participant qualifies for good cause or other exception as determined by the department in accordance with the best interest of the child, parent, or specified relative, and with standards prescribed by rule. The authorized good cause or other exceptions shall include participation in a family investment agreement safety plan option to address or prevent family or domestic violence and other consideration given to the presence of family or domestic violence. If a specified relative with whom a child is residing fails to comply with these cooperation requirements, a sanction shall be imposed as defined by rule in accordance with state and federal law.
7. Periodic reviews. As a condition of eligibility, the department may require periodic reports from a participant concerning the participant's income, resources, family composition, and other circumstances. If the participant's circumstances change, the participant's assistance may be continued, renewed, suspended, changed in amount, or entirely withdrawn, as determined in accordance with rule.
8. Out-of-state assistance. Assistance shall be paid to a participant residing temporarily out-of-state if the participant retains residency in this state and remains otherwise eligible for assistance. The department shall periodically redetermine the eligibility of a participant who is temporarily residing out-of-state.
97 Acts, ch 41, §3, 34; 98 Acts, ch 1218, §50; 99 Acts, ch 100, §1
Referred to in § 239B.3, 239B.9
Department to simplify criteria applicable to families with an unemployed parent; shortened waiting period effective January 1, 1998; 97 Acts, ch 41, § 30
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