Coding Manual




Overview



Purpose of the Database

Since the early 1990s, researchers and policy makers have had an increasingly difficult time understanding how states operate their cash assistance programs for needy families. The complexity of welfare programs increased in the early 1990s, as more states applied for waivers to experiment with their welfare programs and as Congress accelerated the approval process. The increase in state waivers began shifting the control of cash assistance from the federal government to the states. This shift culminated in the passage of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) in August of 1996. This legislation replaced Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) with Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF). TANF provided states with block grant funding and placed very few restrictions on how states implemented their individual programs. This change increased the degree of variation across state programs and thus increased the difficulty of tracking program rules.

Under AFDC, most program rules were determined at the federal level. States were allowed to set their own rules in several areas, including some key policies, such as: income eligibility limits, benefits levels and eligibility requirements for two-parent families. While the federal government offered states a finite number of options, those options fit within a program structure that did not vary across states. Differences in AFDC programs across states could be researched easily using the AFDC State Plans that states were required to submit to the federal government and/or through documents prepared by the Administration for Children and Families summarizing information in those plans.

By the mid-1990s, a large number of states had received waivers to experiment with new policies, such as family caps and time limits. These waivers also allowed states to modify aspects of their AFDC programs previously set by the federal government. Waiver policies were described in the Waiver Terms and Conditions agreed upon by the state and federal government, not in the AFDC State Plans. The Terms and Conditions did not provide a full understanding of the policies because certain implementation details were not addressed and the implementation schedules often changed after the agreement was reached.

With the replacement of AFDC with the TANF block grant, tracking states' policies became even more difficult. The level of detail in TANF State Plans varied greatly across states. Generally, the Plans offered insufficient information to completely understand the details of eligibility, benefit computation and client requirements. This detailed information can only be obtained from state regulations, caseworker manuals and/or interviews with state administrators.

Congress reauthorized TANF in 2005, with the passage of the Deficit Reduction Act (DRA). In so doing, the federal government has reestablished some of its influence over states' programs, particularly in the operation and design of work programs. However, while the definitions of certain activities and the tracking and calculation of participation rates have been given tighter new parameters, states are likely to have highly varied responses to the new requirements.

Given the difficulties associated with researching state TANF policies, a method of organizing the information in a way that would serve many purposes seemed advisable. In early 1997, under the Assessing the New Federalism (ANF) project, the Urban Institute began developing the Welfare Rules Database. The database was conceived as a single location where information on program rules could be researched across states and across time, without the need to consult multiple documents. The database was envisioned as a resource for researchers working on both descriptive and quantitative projects.

The Welfare Rules Database (WRD) provides a longitudinal account of the changes in state welfare rules. The WRD organizes the detailed information on welfare rules across states, time and geographic areas within states and different type of assistance units. Caseworker manuals and state regulations provide the data from 1997 to the present, while AFDC State Plans and Waiver Terms and Conditions provide the data for years prior to 1997. In some states, the caseworker manuals and regulations also include information for years prior to 1997. In those states, the database reflects the manuals and regulations.

Design of the Database

The database is organized into 30 categories of rules, as shown in Appendix A. Appendix B provides detailed descriptions of the categories and the variables. The focus is welfare rules; the database does not contain information regarding caseloads, budgets, outcomes or administrative practices. In addition, the database does not address the possibility that the rules found in state manuals and/or regulations may be applied differently in practice.

Each category listed in Appendix A contains a series of variables designed to capture the intricacies of the rules covered within that category. The variables include a mix of yes/no variables, numeric variables, variables allowing a limited number of possible responses and free-form text variables. Each variable has a corresponding notes variable to capture additional details related to that particular variable. In addition, each category has an "Additional Notes" variable to capture any additional information regarding the rules not captured by the category's variables.

For each state, year and category, the database contains at least one record of information outlining the exact rules for that particular state and year. A record is the set of variables that captures a state's policies for a given category. A record is comparable to an observation in a survey data set. Multiple records for a given state, year and category may exist. Multiple records are coded if rules differ across key variables, such as:

  • months in a given year
  • geographic region of the state
  • experimental versus control group
  • type of assistance unit (i.e. two-parent versus one-parent units)
  • component of the program

Further descriptions of these situations are provided in the following pages.


Database



The Welfare Rules Database was originally developed in Microsoft Access. Recently, the database was converted to an Oracle database; however, coders still view and enter data using the Access interface.

This section of the Coding Manual describes the Access interface used by The Urban Institute researchers to code and clean the data. WRD users outside The Urban Institute will never use the Access interface. However, users may want to review this section for a better understanding of the coding process.

Structure of Database

Tables

Tables in the database resemble standard spreadsheets. There are two types of tables: data and definition tables.

Data Tables

Data tables hold the welfare rules data. For each category, a table exists that contains the values of all the variables for that category. In the table, there is a separate column for each variable in the category. Each row corresponds to a separate record for each state and year. The tables are sorted by state and by year.

Data are generally entered through Access screens known as forms. These screens display the variable definitions and provide fields in which to enter data. A record is created when a coder enters data for the key variables. These variables distinguish each record in a particular category. Once the key variables are completed, the record is automatically saved in the data table. Records can also be created by entering data directly into the tables or by importing an Excel spreadsheet into the table.

Definition Tables

Definition tables contain the names, descriptions and variable types for the variables in each category. One of the largest definition tables is the "Variables" table. This table contains all variables for all categories in the database. A new variable is always added to the "Variable" definition table.

Each of the key variables in the header has a corresponding definition table. For example, Coverage Description has the table, "Coverage by State and Year." This table lists the Coverage Description codes and definitions for all states and years. The information for each state and year appears when the coder selects the arrow button (pull-down box) next to the Coverage Description field on each form. The coder can add new information to this table by using the box with three dashes next to the Coverage Description field. "Components by State and Year" and "Detailed Demographics" function in similar ways. Each table is described in the section devoted to Key Variables.

Forms

Forms are the Access screens where data are entered and viewed. Each form has a set structure with blank fields for entering data. Each form begins with a header. The variables in the header are the same for each category. They capture the state, year, months, unit type, and coverage corresponding to the rules entered in a particular record. The variables specific to each category follow the header variables. A description of each variable is found next to the field in which data are entered.

Once data are entered, the form becomes known as a record. The records are organized by state, in alphabetical order. Within each state, the records are arranged by year, beginning with the earliest year for which data has been coded for that particular category. When data are entered into a form, the record is automatically saved as a new row in the corresponding data table.

Types of Variables

For each category, a series of variables is used to describe the exact rules used by a particular state in a particular year. There are many different types of variables:

  • Numeric variables
  • Yes/no variables, sometimes displayed as a check box (Yes = -1, No = 0)
  • Short text variables, that allow a limited number of responses
  • Long, free form text variables

Most variables have companion notes variables that allow the coder to enter details or nuances of a state's rules that are not captured in the available fields.

Every category ends with an Additional Notes variable. These variables are free-form text variables where the coder can enter any other information about that category that does not fit within the specified variables.

 

Coding Specifics



When to Code a New Record

Statement of General Principle

A new record is coded for a particular category only when a change in policy creates a different set of rules for that category in that state and year.

A new record is not coded due to a change in the geographic group or unit types covered by a set of a rules during a year or a mid-year change in the funding source from AFDC to TANF. (More information on how to handle changes in coverage and funding sources is given below.)

Header Variables

Header variables are the key and non-key variables that appear at the top of each form. These variables provide details regarding when, where and to whom the rules captured in a record apply.

Key Variables

The key variables distinguish each record in a particular category from the other records. These variables indicate the geographic region, time period, group of people and program to which the rules captured in the record apply. Every record in the database must have a unique set of key variables.

The complete list of key variables includes: State
Year
Month Begin
Month End
Program
Unit Type
Component
Coverage
Coverage Description
Majority Rule

State Variable

The State variable indicates the state to which the rules of the record apply.

Year and Month Variables (Year, Month Begin, Month End)

At least one record per category and state is coded for every calendar year. The Year, Month Begin and Month End variables describe the period of time during which the rules of a particular record apply.

Coding Instructions for the Months Variables

The Month Begin variable captures the exact month in which the rules outlined in the form were implemented, while the Month End variable indicates the last month in which the rules were in effect.

If the rules captured in a record began prior to that particular calendar year, Month Begin is coded "0." If the rules captured in a record continue beyond that particular calendar year, Month End is coded "0." If the rules began during a previous year and continue into the following year, both Month Begin and Month End are coded "0." If it is unclear when a particular set of rules started or ended, Month Begin or Month End are coded "99", respectively.

Connecting Records When Coder is Unsure of when One Record Ended and Another Began

The first available manual from a state may be dated after 1996. In this situation, it is sometimes unclear as to whether or not the AFDC policy was in place until the date of the 1997 manual or whether the policy outlined in the manual began prior to the manual date. If the coder is not confident that the 1996 policy remained the same between the last 1996 record coded and the date of the new manual, the 1996 and 1997 records are coded in the following manner. Uncertainty regarding the start or end point of policies is primarily isolated in the 1996 through 1998 timeframe, around the change from AFDC to TANF. It is unlikely that this sort of coding is neccesary in later years.

1996 Record: Year: 1996
Month Began: 0
Month End: 99
1997 Record: Year: 1997
Month Began: 99
Month End: 0

Additional Notes:These policies were definitely in effective X/XX (the date from the manual); however, they may have been implemented earlier.

Multiple records are added if program rules change during the calendar year. For example, if a state's asset limit is $1,000 in 1995 and it increases to $3,000 in May of 1996, two records are coded for 1996, in following manner:

Record 1:

Year:

1996

Month Began:

0

Month End:

4

Record 2:

Year:

1996

Month Began:

5

Month End:

0

Program Variable

The Program key variable captures the funding source for a particular set of rules. The Program variable in each record containing pre-PRWORA rules is coded "AFDC." In October of 1996, states began switching to TANF funding; however, the date in which the funding source changed varied by state. If the rules in a particular category did not change when the funding source changed, only one record for that set of rules exists and the Program field is coded "AFDC/TANF" for the year in which the funding source changed. The following year is coded "TANF." If the rules in a particular category did change when the funding source changed, two separate records are coded: one for the old rules coded "AFDC" and one for the new rules coded "TANF." The final option for this variable is "State Program." This option only applies when a state implements a program entirely funded by the state.

Unit Type Variable

The Unit Type variable captures the type of assistance units to which the rules in a given record apply. Characteristics of assistance units include the number of caregivers, the type of caregiver (i.e. minor parent or pregnant woman), recipient versus applicant assistance units and assistance units with earnings versus those without earnings. Rules that vary for different assistance unit types are coded in separate records.

For example, if the Activity Requirements for a state in 1997 vary depending on whether the unit head is married, two records are coded for that year. The Unit Type variable for one record is coded "Two-parent families", while the other record is coded "All, except two-parent families."

This variable does not capture the characteristics of individual unit members. If a rule varies by the characteristics of an assistance unit member, the variation is described in the notes section associated with that variable.

Unit Type options: All
All, except two-parent families
Two-parent families
All, except two-parent and minor parent families
Minor parent families
All, except child-only units
Child-only units
Pregnant women
Recipients
Applicants
Recipients with earnings
Recipients without earnings
Union (applicants and recipients without earnings)
Adding Notes Regarding a State's Definition of the Unit Type
The first time a Unit Type is used for a state, year and category, a detailed description of the Unit Type may be added to the "Detailed Demographics" table. This description provides details regarding how the unit type is defined in a given state. While the concept of minor parents is relevant in all states, the exact definition may vary between states. In addition, category specific definitions may exist for a particular unit type. If a detailed description exists for a particular state, year and category, the description automatically appears in the Unit Type variable in the Internet interface.

Important Information Regarding Unit Type and Unit Type Descriptions

If the rules for a particular category do not change during a given year, but the unit types covered by those rules change, another record is NOT created. In this case, a modified Unit Type option is needed and details are added to the Unit Type description field. A new record is only coded when the policies captured in that category change.

For example, suppose a state has two separate asset limits for applicants and recipients prior to October of 2000. Applicants have a limit of $3,000, while recipients have a limit of $5,000. As of October 1, 2000, the asset limit for applicants increases to $5,000. Asset Limits should only have two records for 2000.

Record 1 - 2000 ($3,000 asset limit)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 2000

Month End: 9, because applicants received a new limit as of October of 2000

Unit Type: Applicant

Unit Type Description: Applicant

Record 2 - 2000 ($5,000 asset limit)

Month Begin: 0, because the rules were in effect for recipients prior to 2000

Month End: 0, because rules continued for applicants and recipients in 2001

Unit Type: Recipient; All

Unit Type Description: Through September only applies to recipient units. Beginning in October, applies to all units.

Special Unit Type Categories

Several categories only apply to the specific types of units described in the category's name. These categories include:

Eligibility of Pregnant Women
Eligibility of Two-Parent Families
Eligibility of Units Headed by Minor Parents
Income and Assets of Children
School Policies for Dependent Children
Minor Parent Activities Requirements and Bonuses

For these categories, the Unit Type variable is always coded "All."

 

Components Variable

Components are coded when a state divides its caseload into mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive groups that are treated differently across more than one category. Furthermore, the definition of these groups must involve more than one characteristic, eliminating the possibility of coding the two groups using the Unit Type variable.

Due to the difficulty in determining when Components exist, a rule of thumb has been established. Code groups as Components when the state treats the groups separately. A state may indicate that it views the groups separately in several ways. If the state uses capital letters, bold text or italicized text when printing the name of each group in its manual and/or regulations, the groups are treated as different Components.

If a state has two or more Components, each Component has a separate record in the categories where rules vary by Components. If the rules do not differ by Components for a particular category, separate records are not needed.

Some states divide their caseload into two mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive groups; however, only one of the components has a specific name. The Component variable of the records applying to the component without a name are coded as "All, except (component name)." For example, Virginia's work program is called VIEW. Across several categories, VIEW participants are subject to different rules than welfare recipients who do not participate in VIEW. Consequently, "VIEW" is coded as a component in the categories in which the rules differ based on VIEW participation. The Component variable in the records that apply to recipients who do not participate in VIEW is coded as "All, except VIEW."

A brief description of each component for a given state and year is located in the Component category. However, this category will not be available until Phase II of the release.

Important Information Regarding Components
If the rules for a particular category do not change during a given year, but the components covered by those rules change, the changes in components are coded in the Component field. A new record is not created. A new record should only be coded when the policies captured in that category change.

Coverage and Coverage Description Variables

Coverage:

This variable captures whether or not the rules in a particular record affect all individuals in the state (Statewide) or only some of the counties or regions within a state (Not Statewide). In addition, this variable also indicates whether a statewide policy affects the entire caseload (Statewide, Full Coverage) or whether the policy only affects a portion of the caseload across the state (Statewide, Not Full Coverage).

When rules for a category vary for different geographic regions (Not Statewide) or when only a portion of the caseload across the state is affected by a policy due an experiment or the phase-in of a policy (Statewide, Not Full Coverage), separate records are coded. For example, if several counties within a state operate under a different set of rules due to a waiver, two records are needed: one for the rules for the majority of the state and the other for the rules in the counties affected by the waiver.

The three options for coverage include (More detailed descriptions are provided below): Statewide, Full Coverage
Statewide, Not Full Coverage
Not Statewide

At least two records are coded for a state and year if "Statewide, Not Full Coverage" or "Not Statewide" are used.

Coverage Description:

If the appropriate Coverage code is "Statewide, Not Full Coverage" or "Not Statewide", the Coverage Description field is also coded. This variable captures the details about who is covered by the rules in each record. A number corresponds with each Coverage Description for a state and year; this number is referred to as the Coverage Description code.

The Coverage Description includes the following information, if applicable: 1. Details regarding how a policy is phased-in.
2. Names of counties or cities affected by the rules.
3. Whether participation in the program is voluntary.
4. Percentage of caseload covered.

Important Information Regarding Coverage and Coverage Descriptions

If the rules for a particular category do not change during a given year, but the individuals covered by those rules change, the coverage changes are coded in the Coverage Description field. A new record is not created. A new record should only be coded when the policies captured in that category change.

Examples of How to Code Different Coverage Situations:

Statewide, full coverage:

Definition:

For the portion of the year reflected in the months variables, the rules outlined in the form were statewide, operating in every county within the state, and the rules applied to the entire caseload in each county (or the entire caseload falling into the demographic group and/or component on the record, if applicable).

When the coverage variable is coded "Statewide, Full Coverage," a Coverage Description is not coded. The default setting is "0" for the Coverage Description code.

Example:

On May 1, 2003, the amount of assets an assistance unit was allowed to hold increased in all counties for all applicants and recipients. The previous limit had been in effect since 1997. Two records are coded for the state in 2003.

Record 1 - 2003 (old asset rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 2003

Month End: 4, because the new rules became effective May 2003

Coverage: Statewide, full coverage

Record 2 - 2003 (new asset rules)

Month Begin: 5, because the new rules were implemented in May of 2003

Month End: 0, because recipients/applicants continued to use the new rules during 2004

Coverage: Statewide, full coverage

Statewide, not full coverage:

Definition:

For the portion of the year reflected in the Months variables, the rules outlined in the record were statewide, operating in every county within the state, but not every recipient/applicant in a county was subjected to those rules.

This code is used when the caseload in every county is phased in gradually to new rules or a random selection of recipients use one set of rules while the remainder uses another set.

Example:

Beginning May 1, 1997, all counties within a state began phasing in 10% of the caseload each month into the new rules for benefit calculation. By February 1, 1998, all recipients would be subject to the new rules. In this case, there would be two records for 1997 and another two records for 1998.

Record 1 - 1997 (old benefit computation rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to calendar year 1997

Month End: 0, because some recipients continued to use the old rules until February 1998

Coverage: Statewide, not full coverage

Coverage Description: Statewide, full coverage through April. Beginning in May, 10% of the caseload began phasing out each month, decreasing to 0% by February 1, 1998.

Record 2 - 1997 (new benefit computation rules)

Month Begin: 5 , because the new rules were implemented for some recipients in May 1997

Month End: 0, because recipients continued to use the new rules into 1998

Coverage: Statewide, not full coverage

Coverage Description: Beginning in May 10% of the caseload each month began phasing in, increasing to 100% of caseload by February 1, 1998.

Record 1 - 1998 (old benefit computation rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 1998

Month End: 1, because after January 31, 1998 no recipients would be subjected to the old rules

Coverage: Statewide, not full coverage

Coverage Description: May 1, 1997, began phasing out 10% of the caseload each month, decreasing to 0% by February 1, 1998.

Record 2 - 1998 (new benefit computation rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 1998

Month End: 0, because new rules continued into 1999

Coverage: Statewide, not full coverage

Coverage Description: Starting May 1, 1997 began phasing in 10% of the caseload each month, increasing to 100% of caseload by February 1, 1998.

Record 1 - 1999 (new benefit computations rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 1999

Month End: 0, because new rules continue into 2000

Coverage: Statewide, full coverage

Not Statewide:

Definition:

For at least one month within the portion of the year reflected in the months variables, one or more counties/regions were operating under different rules than the remaining counties/regions within the state.

This code is used when a state phases in new rules by counties and when a state operates a waiver or experiment in only a portion of the state. This type of phasing in new policies, or operating a pilot program in a portion of the state, was more common in the late 1990s, as states implemented their new TANF programs.

Example:

A state began a waiver on November 1, 1995, changing the assets limit in 5 counties. During 1996, the waiver rules were phased in, county by county through November. By December 1, 1996, all counties within the state were abiding by the new rules.

Record 1 - 1995 (old asset rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 1995

Month End: 0, because some counties would still operate under old rules in the following year

Coverage: Not statewide

Coverage Description: Statewide, full coverage through September. Beginning in November, statewide, except 5 counties. Remaining counties phased out by county, phase out completed by November 31, 1996.

Record 2 - 1995 (new asset rules)

Month Begin: 11 , because new rules were implemented for waiver counties in November 1995

Month End: 0, because waiver county recipients would continue to use the new rules into 1996

Coverage: Not Statewide

Coverage Description: Five counties in November, phasing in by county, statewide by December 1, 1996.

Record 1 - 1996 (old asset rules)

Month Begin: 0 , because the rules were in effect prior to 1996

Month End: 11, because all counties were using new rules by December of 1996

Coverage: Not Statewide

Coverage Description: Statewide, except five counties in November of 1995. Remaining counties phased out by county, phase out completed by November 31, 1996.

Record 2 - 1996 (new asset rules)

Month Begin: 0, because the new rules were implemented for some counties in November 1995

Month End: 0, because counties will continue to use the new rules into 1997

Coverage: Not Statewide

Coverage Description: Five counties in November, phasing in by county, statewide by December 1, 1996.

Record 1 -1997 (new asset rules)

Month Begin: 0, because the new rules were implemented before 1997

Month End: 0, because counties will continue beyond 1997

Coverage: Statewide, full coverage

Majority Rule Variable

For a particular state and year, each category must have one and only one record coded as the Majority Rule record (Majority Rule equal to -1). This code indicates the set of rules that were used for a majority of the state's caseload for a majority of the year.

The majority rule status applies only to a particular category. Majority rule records are NOT necessarily consistent across categories for a given state and year. The majority rule record in one category may not describe the same population or time period as the majority rule record in another category. For example, the majority rule record in a given year for Income Eligibility Limits may apply to recipients from July to December. However, in the same year, the Dollar Amounts majority rule record may apply to all units in only 20 counties from January to December.

If there is only one record for a given state, year and category, that record is coded as the majority rule record.

If a set of statewide rules is in effect January 1 through June 30, and then another set of rules becomes effective statewide on July 1, the second record, coded Month Begin: 7 and Month End: 0, is considered the majority rule record.

If the statewide rules for a particular category change twice/three times in a given year resulting in three/four different records in effect for an equal number of months, the record containing the rules in effect in July is coded as the majority rule record.

If a state has two records for a given category and year, one for applicant and another for recipients, the recipient record is considered the majority rule record.

Non-Key Variable - Waiver Name

One non-key variable is located in the header, Waiver Name. Non-key variables are not used to distinguish records from one another; however, they do provide more information about the record.

Prior to PRWORA, a waiver name is coded for all records that captured rules pertaining to a state's waiver program. If a state implemented a waiver that affected the rules captured in three categories, two records are coded for each category. Only one record is coded for each of the remaining categories unaffected by the waiver Terms and Conditions. The waiver name is coded in the appropriate field for the records containing waiver rules.

After PRWORA, the need for waivers became largely obsolete. However, some states chose to continue their waivers in order to avoid compliance with certain federal requirements. Other states continued their waiver programs; however, their programs were already in compliance with all PRWORA regulations. The database only codes waiver names for states that continued their waivers in order to avoid certain federal requirements. For these states, the waiver name is only coded in categories that contain rules that are not allowed without the waiver. The State TANF Plans are used to determine whether or not the waivers are needed to avoid any federal regulation.

Use of Header Variables
Characteristics of Units versus Characteristics of Unit Members

If a rule varies based on characteristics of an individual in the unit, such as members over 60 years old, the rules affecting a majority of the caseload are coded in the variable fields. The rules that apply to units containing individuals with the specified characteristics are outlined in the notes sections corresponding to the variables that differ.

Control Groups

Every state to which the Department of Health and Human Services granted a waiver was required to maintain a randomly assigned control group. Control groups were supposed to be used to evaluate the impact of the waiver policies. The policy for coding control groups is the following:

Pre-1997

Rules for control groups are not coded in a new record, unless the control group composes more than 20% of a particular geographic area.

Beginning in 1997

All information given by a state regarding control groups is coded, including control groups comprising less that 20% of a particular geographic area. The existence of a control group is captured in the Coverage and Coverage Description variables.

All Variables

Percentages as Whole Numbers

Percentages are coded without the decimal. The variable descriptions are worded so that the response is interpreted correctly.

Special Codes
Not Applicable (n.a.)

In the following cases, n.a. is placed in the variable field or in the notes section when the variable is numeric:

Code n.a. if:

1. An entire category does not apply for a given state

Example:If the state no longer has any special eligibility criteria for two-parent families, all variables within the Eligibility of Two-Parent Families are coded n.a.

Any necessary explanations are coded in the Additional Notes section.

2. A previous variable completely explains the rule and additional information about the variable is not needed.

No Limit

If there is no limit on a particular value, the variable is coded No Limit.

Question Mark (?)

 

This code is used when a rule or policy captured by the variable exists but there is not enough information to code it accurately. A ? is placed in the variable field, unless the variable is numeric. If the variable is numeric, the ? is placed in the notes section and the field is left blank.

Importance of Consistency

 

Consistency is extremely important because analysts will use this database to compare information across states and years. Appendix B is constantly consulted to ensure that each state is coded consistently.

 

Appendix A: Welfare Rules Categories


(Organized from the perspective of a family applying for benefits)

Does the state try to divert the family from applying for benefits?

Diversion

What kinds of families are potentially eligible?

Eligibility by Number/Type of Parents

Eligibility of Units Headed by a Minor Parent

Eligibility of Pregnant Women

Employment-Related Eligibility of Two-Parent Families

Which people in a family are potentially eligible?

Eligibility of Individual Family Members

Inclusion of Non-Citizens in the Unit

Family Caps

Treatment of Additional Adults in the Household

Amount of assets a family can have and still be eligible

Asset Test

How is Income Counted?

Countable Income

Income and Assets of Children

In-kind Income

Deemed Income

Earned Income Disregards

Amount of income a family can have and still be eligible?

Income Eligibility Tests

Dollar Amounts

If family passes all eligibility tests, what is the amount of their benefit?

Benefit Computation

What are a recipient family's child support requirements?

Child Support

Child Support Sanctions

What are a recipient family's behavioral requirements?

Contracts and Agreements

School Policies for Dependent Children

Immunization and Health Screening Requirements

What are a recipient family's work-related activities requirements?

Activities Exemptions

Activities Requirements

Activities Sanctions

Minor Parent Activities Requirements and Bonuses

Components

How long can a family receive benefits?

Time Limits

What happens after a family no longer receives benefits?

Transitional Benefits

 

Appendix B:Coding Instructions by Category



Activities Exemptions

Description:

This category identifies which individuals in an assistance unit are exempt from participating in Activities Requirements. The exemptions reflect the exact description in the state's manuals and/or regulations. If an individual does not have any of the characteristics outlined in these variables, they are considered non-exempt and must participate in the requirements described in the Activities Requirement category.

Under the old AFDC rules, exempt persons included persons who were: ill or incapacitated; the caretaker of someone ill or incapacitated; the caretaker of a child under three or a child under 6 if child care is not guaranteed; working 30 hours or more per week; a child under 16 or under 18 and attending school; a woman in the second trimester of pregnancy; or residing in an area where JOBS was not available.

Overlap Issues:

·This category is coded using the exact exemption criteria for each state's formal activities/work program, as outlined in each state's manual and/or regulations. Some states exempt children and minor parents from their formal activities programs, while other states do not. If dependent children and/or minor parents are not exempt (that is, their activities requirements are considered a part of the state's formal activities program), their requirements are coded in Activities Requirements category. In addition, the requirements of dependent children and minor parents are also captured in the School Policies for Dependent Children and Minor Parent Activity Requirements and Bonuses categories, respectively, regardless of whether these persons are exempt or non-exempt from the state's formal activities program.

Special Issues:

  1. Notes about exemptions that apply differently to minor parents appear in the variable at the bottom of the form (beginning in 2001). Prior to 2001, minor parent differences were captured in the notes field next to the particular exemption policies that varied.
  2. Notes about exemptions that apply differently to two parent households appear in the variable at the bottom of the form.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Number of hours of work per week in unsubsidized job required in order to be exempt

(ae_wkhrs)

Description

Indicates the number of hours per week a unit member must work in an unsubsidized job in order to be considered exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

30

Child under x years old is exempt

(ae_chage)

Description

Captures the age under which dependent children are exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

16

Child under age x is exempt if attending school

(ae_schag)

Description

Captures the age under which dependent children currently enrolled in school are exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

18

Custodial parent under age x is exempt

(ae_mpage)

Description

Captures the age under which parents are exempt from Activities Requirements (captures the exemption of minor parents).

Under AFDC

16

Custodial parent under age x is exempt if in school

(ae_smpag)

Description

Captures the age under which parents currently enrolled in school are exempt from Activities Requirements (captures the exemption of minor parents who are attending school).

Under AFDC

18

Ill or incapacitated person is exempt

(ae_illps)

Description

Indicates whether or not an ill or incapacitated person is exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

Yes

Person caring for an ill or incapacitated unit member is exempt

(ae_illct)

Description

Indicates whether or not a unit member caring for another ill or incapacitated unit member is exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

Yes

Person x years old or older is exempt

(ae_elder)

Description

Captures the age at which persons are considered exempt from Activities Requirements (captures the exemption of elderly persons)

Under AFDC

60

Person in x month of pregnancy is exempt

(ae_prgmo)

Description

Captures month of pregnancy when a pregnant woman becomes exempt from Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

4

Person caring for a child under x months old is exempt

(ae_cldct)

Description

Captures persons exempt from Activities Requirements due to caring for children under this age (in months).

Under AFDC

36

Person caring for a child under x months old is exempt if child care is not guaranteed

(ae_nogcc)

Description

Captures persons exempt from Activities Requirements due to caring for children under this age (in months) when child care is not guaranteed.

Under AFDC

72

Victim of domestic violence is exempt

(ae_dvvic)

Description

Captures whether or not victims of domestic violence are exempt from activities requirements.

Under AFDC

Waivers were provided on a case-by-case basis.

Other reasons for exemption

(ae_othex)

Description

Captures other reasons a person is exempt from Activities Requirements

Under AFDC

n.a.

Details regarding exemptions that apply differently for two-parent units

(ae_2prnt)

Description

Lists the Activities Requirement exemptions that apply differently to two parent families, as well as any additional exemptions that are limited to one parent in a two parent family.

Under AFDC

Persons caring for a child under 36 months old is exempt; person caring for a child under 72 months old is exempt when child care is not guaranteed.

Details regarding exemptions that apply differently for minor parent units

(ae_exempt)

Description

Lists the Activities Requirement exemptions that apply differently to minor parent families.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures additional notes regarding Activities Exemptions.

Activities Requirements

Description:

Activities Requirements

The Activities Requirements category outlines each state's activity/work program, exactly as the state manual describes the program. The category includes the rules that require applicants and/or recipients to participate in education, job training and/or work in order to maintain eligibility or avoid a sanction. There are three major aspects of activities requirements: when is the requirement imposed, who must meet the requirement and what must the recipient and/or applicant do in order to meet the requirement.

This category describes when the requirement is imposed, including at least two possible situations. A state may impose a certain requirement after an assistance unit has received assistance for a specified number of month. For example, after receiving assistance for 60 days a recipient must participate in Activities Requirement #1, by taking part in job search or training 20 hours per week. Alternatively, an Activities Requirement may be imposed after a recipient has participated in the previous Activities Requirement for a specified amount of time or until completion. For example, after a recipient completes the job training program (Activities Requirement #1), the recipient must participate in a subsidized or unsubsidized job for 20 hours a week or more (Activities Requirement #2).

This category also captures which individuals within an assistance unit must meet each of the Activities Requirements. This variable is different from the header variable "Unit Type" which indicates the type of units to which a particular set of rules applies. (For more information regarding the use of the "Unit Type" variable, see the codebook.) Under AFDC rules, all non-exempt recipients were required to participate in education, job training and/or work activities. Alternatively, activities requirements may only apply to a sub-group of non-exempt participants. For instance, non-exempt recipients, who have received assistance for 24 months, may receive a different activities requirement.

Finally, this category describes each Activities Requirement, including the allowable activities in which a non-exempt recipient may participate and minimum and/or maximum time a recipient must participate. Under AFDC, the Activities Requirement consisted of participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent that those services were available. Under waivers and TANF, states have changed the allowable activities as well as the time a recipient is required to participate.

"Work Requirement Time Limit"

In addition to outlining all activities requirements, this category provides a summary of the state's "work requirement time limit," if one exists. The term "work requirement time limit" is often used; however, the term is not always used in a consistent manner. To prevent any confusion, the term "work related time limit," when used in the database, has a very specific definition.

In order for a state policy to be consider a "work requirement time limit," a state must require a non-exempt parent/caregiver to work at least 20 hours/week in a "real job" after receiving benefits for a specified period of time. A "real job" includes participation in one or more of the following activities: A subsidized or unsubsidized job, participation in CWEP/AWEP, self employment or work as a child care provider for children other than ones own. In addition, failure to meet this requirement must result in one of the following sanctions to qualify as a "work requirement time limit": removal of the parent/caregiver from the unit when calculating benefits or the ineligibility of the entire unit. (Note: Some financial sanctions may be more severe than the removal of the parent/caregiver; however, they are not considered time limits because no one in the unit becomes ineligible.) Finally, the failure to meet the requirement is only considered a "work requirement time limit" if the penalty is imposed until compliance or for the lifetime of the unit.

If a state policy meets these requirements, this category summarizes information on the "work requirement time limit." This summary information includes the number of months after which participation in a "real job" is required, the sanction imposed for non-compliance, the duration of the sanction, as well as the Activities Requirement under which additional information on this requirement is coded.

Overlap Issues:

·Activities Requirements must be used in conjunction with two other categories. The Activities Exemptions category captures the individuals within each unit that are exempt from any requirements. The Activities Sanctions category outlines the sanctions imposed on non-exempt individuals that do not comply with the requirements outlined in this category.

·This category is coded using the exact exemption criteria for each state's formal activities/work program, as outlined in each state's manual and/or regulations. Some states exempt children and minor parents from their formal activities programs, while other states do not. If dependent children and/or minor parents are not exempt (that is, their activities requirements are considered a part of the state's formal activities program), their requirements are coded in this category. However, separate categories exist for each of these groups: School Policies for Dependent Children and Minor Parent Activity Requirements and Bonuses. These categories capture all information regarding the activities requirements of children and minor parents, regardless of whether these persons are exempt or non-exempt from the state's formal activities program. If children and/or minor parents are included in the state's formal Activities Requirements program, their requirements appear in 2 categories.

Special Issues:

·When to use the "Unit Type" variable in the header versus the "Activities Requirement #1-5 applies to:" variable:

When activities requirements vary by type of unit (i.e. one or two parent units, units headed by a minor parent or child only units, including unit distinguished by whether or not the unit has earnings), an Activities Requirement record should be coded for each type of unit for which rules vary. However, if the activities requirements vary by characteristics of unit members (i.e. age of youngest child or educational background of parent/caregiver), only one record should be coded. Differences in activities requirements for unit members with different characteristics should be captured using the "Activities Requirement #1-5 applies to:" variable within one Activities Requirements record.

·Within a given record, a new requirement is coded if "When is Activities Requirement #1-5 imposed?" or "Activities Requirement #1-5 applies to:" is different.

·Capturing the interaction/movement between activities requirements in the same record.

If several activities requirements apply to one group of non-exempt participants, the requirements should be coded in the order of application (Activities Requirement #1 through #5). If there are two sub-groups within a record, the requirements for one group should be coded in order of application. After all the requirements for the first sub-group are coded, the requirements for the second group should be coded in the order of application.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Activities Requirement #1

When is Activities Requirement #1 imposed?

(ar_#1whn)

Description

Indicates length of assistance allowed before Activities Requirement #1 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, there was no specific time at which activities were required. Therefore, this variable is blank (should be coded n.a.)

Description of Activities Requirement #1:

(ar_#1dsc)

Description

Describes what is required for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent these services are available.

Activities Requirement #1 applies to:

(ar_#1who)

Description

Indicates to which group of non-exempt individuals Activities Requirements #1 applies.

Notes

See notes above under Special Issues.

Under AFDC

Non-exempt recipients

Activities Requirement #1: Hours required per week

(ar_#1hrs)

Description

Indicates the maximum and/or minimum hours of activity participation required for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes

Includes all available information.

Under AFDC

These was no minimum requirement under JOBS. However, custodial parents with children under the age of 6 and guaranteed child care were not required to participate for more than 20 hours per week.

Activities Requirements #1: Allowable activities include:

Basic or remedial education

(ar_#1bas)

Description

Indicates whether basic or remedial education are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in basic or remedial education for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

High school/GED

(ar_#1hsl)

Description

Indicates whether high school attendance or work towards a GED are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in high school or work towards a GED for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

ESL (English as a second language classes)

(ar_#1esl)

Description

Indicates whether English as a second language classes are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in English as a second language classes for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Post secondary education

(ar_#1pse)

Description

Indicates whether post secondary education attendance is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in post secondary education for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job skills training

(ar_#1jst)

Description

Indicates whether job skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job skills training for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job readiness activities

(ar_#1jrd)

Description

Indicates whether job readiness activities are allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job readiness activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job development and job placement

(ar_#1jdp)

Description

Indicates whether job development and job placement are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job development and job placement for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job search

(ar_#1jbs)

Description

Indicates whether job search is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job search for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

On-the-job training

(ar_#1otj)

Description

Indicates whether on-the-job training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in on-the-job training for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Unsubsidized job

(ar_#1uns)

Description

Indicates whether unsubsidized employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in unsubsidized employment for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Work supplementation or subsidized job

(ar_#1sub)

Description

Indicates whether work supplementation or subsidized employment are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in work supplementation or subsidized employment for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP)

(ar_#1cwe)

Description

Indicates whether Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

Yes

Self-employment

(ar_#1slf)

Description

Indicates whether self-employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in self-employment for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

No

Child care provider for others

(ar_#1ccp)

Description

Indicates whether providing child care for others is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can provide child care for others for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

No

Counseling

(ar_#1cns)

Description

Indicates whether counseling is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in counseling for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes

This variable captures any information on substance abuse and domestic violence treatment in particular.

Under AFDC

No

Life skills training

(ar_#1lfe)

Description

Indicates whether life skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in life skills training for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

No

Community Service

(ar_#1com)

Description

Indicates whether community service is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in community service for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

No

Other

(ar_#1oth)

Description

Describes any other allowable activity for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in the activity described in ar_#1oth for Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

None

Activities Requirement #1: Total amount of time a unit may participate in any combination of allowed activities.

(ar_#1tot)

Description

Captures the total amount of time a unit can participate in any combination of allowed activities in Activities Requirement #1.

Under AFDC

No limit

Activities Requirement #2

When is Activities Requirement #2 imposed?

(ar_#2whn)

Description

Indicates length of assistance allowed before Activities Requirement #2 is imposed or any other description regarding when Activities Requirement #2 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, there was no specific time at which activities were required. Therefore, this variable is blank (should be coded n.a.)

Description of Activities Requirement #2:

(ar_#2dsc)

Description

Describes what is required for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent these services are available.

Activities Requirement #2 applies to:

(ar_#2who)

Description

Indicates to which group of non-exempt individuals Activities Requirements #2 applies.

Notes

See notes above under Special Issues.

Under AFDC

Non-exempt recipients

Activities Requirement #2: Hours required per week

(ar_#2hrs)

Description

Indicates the maximum and/or minimum hours of activity participation required for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes

Includes all available information.

Under AFDC

These was no minimum requirement under JOBS. However, custodial parents with children under the age of 6 and guaranteed child care were not required to participate for more than 20 hours per week.

Activities Requirements #2: Allowable activities include:

Basic or remedial education

(ar_#2bas)

 

Description

Indicates whether basic or remedial education are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in basic or remedial education for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

High school/GED

(ar_#2hsl)

Description

Indicates whether high school attendance or work towards a GED are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in high school or work towards a GED for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

ESL (English as a second language classes)

(ar_#2esl)

Description

Indicates whether English as a second language classes are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in English as a second language classes for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Post secondary education

(ar_#2pse)

Description

Indicates whether post secondary education attendance is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in post secondary education for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job skills training

(ar_#2jst)

Description

Indicates whether job skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job skills training for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job readiness activities

(ar_#2jrd)

Description

Indicates whether job readiness activities are allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job readiness activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job development and job placement

(ar_#2jdp)

Description

Indicates whether job development and job placement are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job development and job placement for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job search

(ar_#2jbs)

Description

Indicates whether job search is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job search for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

On-the-job training

(ar_#2otj)

Description

Indicates whether on-the-job training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in on-the-job training for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Unsubsidized job

(ar_#2uns)

Description

Indicates whether unsubsidized employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in unsubsidized employment for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Work supplementation or subsidized job

(ar_#2sub)

Description

Indicates whether work supplementation or subsidized employment are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in work supplementation or subsidized employment for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP)

(ar_#2cwe)

Description

Indicates whether Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

Yes

Self-employment

(ar_#2slf)

Description

Indicates whether self-employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in self-employment for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

No

Child care provider for others

(ar_#2ccp)

Description

Indicates whether providing child care for others is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can provide child care for others for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

No

Counseling

(ar_#2cns)

Description

Indicates whether counseling is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in counseling for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes

This variable captures any information on substance abuse and domestic violence treatment in particular.

Under AFDC

No

Life skills training

(ar_#2lfe)

Description

Indicates whether life skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in life skills training for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

No

Community Service

(ar_#2com)

Description

Indicates whether community service is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in community service for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

No

Other

(ar_#2oth)

Description

Describes any other allowable activity for Activities Requirement #2.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in the activity described in ar2_alw_other for Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

None

Activities Requirement #2: Total amount of time a unit may participate in any combination of allowed activities.

(ar_#2tot)

Description

Captures the total amount of time a unit can participate in any combination of allowed activities in Activities Requirement #2.

Under AFDC

No limit

Activities Requirement #3

When is Activities Requirement #3 imposed?

(ar_#3whn)

Description

Indicates length of assistance allowed before Activities Requirement #3 is imposed or any other description regarding when Activities Requirement #3 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, there was no specific time at which activities were required. Therefore, this variable is blank (should be coded n.a.)

Description of Activities Requirement #3:

(ar_#3dsc)

Description

Describes what is required for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent these services are available.

Activities Requirement #3 applies to:

(ar_#3who)

Description

Indicates to which group of non-exempt individuals Activities Requirements #1 applies.

Notes

See notes above under Special Issues.

Under AFDC

Non-exempt recipients

Activities Requirement #3: Hours required per week

(ar_#3hrs)

Description

Indicates the maximum and/or minimum hours of activity participation required for Activities Requirement #1.

Notes

Includes all available information.

Under AFDC

These was no minimum requirement under JOBS. However, custodial parents with children under the age of 6 and guaranteed child care were not required to participate for more than 20 hours per week.

Activities Requirements #3: Allowable activities include:

Basic or remedial education

(ar_#3bas)

Description

Indicates whether basic or remedial education are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in basic or remedial education for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

High school/GED

(ar_#3hsl)

Description

Indicates whether high school attendance or work towards a GED are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in high school or work towards a GED for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

ESL (English as a second language classes)

(ar_#3esl)

Description

Indicates whether English as a second language classes are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in English as a second language classes for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Post secondary education

(ar_#3pse)

Description

Indicates whether post secondary education attendance is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in post secondary education for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job skills training

(ar_#3jst)

Description

Indicates whether job skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job skills training for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job readiness activities

(ar_#3jrd)

Description

Indicates whether job readiness activities are allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job readiness activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job development and job placement

(ar_#3jdp)

Description

Indicates whether job development and job placement are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job development and job placement for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job search

(ar_#3jbs)

Description

Indicates whether job search is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job search for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

On-the-job training

(ar_#3otj)

Description

Indicates whether on-the-job training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in on-the-job training for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Unsubsidized job

(ar_#3uns)

Description

Indicates whether unsubsidized employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in unsubsidized employment for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Work supplementation or subsidized job

(ar_#3sub)

Description

Indicates whether work supplementation or subsidized employment are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in work supplementation or subsidized employment for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP)

(ar_#3cwe)

Description

Indicates whether Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

Self-employment

(ar_#3sfe)

Description

Indicates whether self-employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in self-employment for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

No

Child care provider for others

(ar_#3ccp)

Description

Indicates whether providing child care for others is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can provide child care for others for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

No

Counseling

Description

Indicates whether counseling is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in counseling for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes

This variable captures any information on substance abuse or domestic violence treatment in particular.

Under AFDC

No

Life skills training

(ar_#3lfe)

Description

Indicates whether life skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in life skills training for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

No

Community Service

(ar_#3com)

Description

Indicates whether community service is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in community service for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

No

Other

(ar_#3oth)

Description

Describes any other allowable activity for Activities Requirement #3.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in the activity described in ar_#3oth for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

None

Activities Requirement #3: Total amount of time a unit may participate in any combination of allowed activities.

(ar_#3tot)

Description

Captures the total amount of time a unit can participate in any combination of allowed activities in Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

No limit

Activities Requirement #4

When is Activities Requirement #4 imposed?

(ar_#4whn)

Description

Indicates length of assistance allowed before Activities Requirement #4 is imposed or any other description regarding when Activities Requirement #4 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, there was no specific time at which activities were required. Therefore, this variable is blank (should be coded n.a.)

Description of Activities Requirement #4:

(ar_#4dsc)

Description

Describes what is required for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent these services are available.

Activities Requirement #3 applies to:

(ar_#4who)

Description

Indicates to which group of non-exempt individuals Activities Requirements #4 applies.

Notes

See notes above under Special Issues.

Under AFDC

Non-exempt recipients

Activities Requirement #3: Hours required per week

(ar_#4hrs)

Description

Indicates the maximum and/or minimum hours of activity participation required for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes

Includes all available information.

Under AFDC

These was no minimum requirement under JOBS. However, custodial parents with children under the age of 6 and guaranteed child care were not required to participate for more than 20 hours per week.

Activities Requirements #4: Allowable activities include:

Basic or remedial education

(ar_#4bas)

Description

Indicates whether basic or remedial education are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in basic or remedial education for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

High school/GED

(ar_#4hsl)

Description

Indicates whether high school attendance or work towards a GED are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in high school or work towards a GED for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

ESL (English as a second language classes)

(ar_#4esl)

Description

Indicates whether English as a second language classes are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in English as a second language classes for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Post secondary education

(ar_#4pse)

Description

Indicates whether post secondary education attendance is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in post secondary education for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job skills training

(ar_#4jst)

Description

Indicates whether job skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job skills training for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job readiness activities

(ar_#4jrd)

Description

Indicates whether job readiness activities are allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job readiness activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job development and job placement

(ar_#4jdp)

Description

Indicates whether job development and job placement are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job development and job placement for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job search

(ar_#4jbs)

Description

Indicates whether job search is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job search for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

On-the-job training

(ar_#4otj)

Description

Indicates whether on-the-job training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in on-the-job training for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Unsubsidized job

(ar_#4uns)

Description

Indicates whether unsubsidized employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in unsubsidized employment for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Work supplementation or subsidized job

(ar_#4sub)

Description

Indicates whether work supplementation or subsidized employment are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in work supplementation or subsidized employment for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP)

(ar_#4cwe)

Description

Indicates whether Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

Yes

Self-employment

(ar_#4sfe)

Description

Indicates whether self-employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in self-employment for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

No

Child care provider for others

(ar_#4ccp)

Description

Indicates whether providing child care for others is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can provide child care for others for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

No

Counseling

(ar_#4cns)

Description

Indicates whether counseling is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in counseling for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes

This variable captures any information on substance abuse or domestic violence treatment in particular.

Under AFDC

No

Life skills training

(ar_#4lfe)

Description

Indicates whether life skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in life skills training for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

No

Community Service

(ar_#4com)

Description

Indicates whether community service is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in community service for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

No

Other

(ar_#4oth)

Description

Describes any other allowable activity for Activities Requirement #4.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in the activity described in ar_#4oth for Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

None

Activities Requirement #4: Total amount of time a unit may participate in any combination of allowed activities.

(ar_#4tot)

Description

Captures the total amount of time a unit can participate in any combination of allowed activities in Activities Requirement #4.

Under AFDC

No limit

Activities Requirement #5

When is Activities Requirement #5 imposed?

(ar_#5whn)

Description

Indicates length of assistance allowed before Activities Requirement #5 is imposed or any other description regarding when Activities Requirement #5 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, there was no specific time at which activities were required. Therefore, this variable is blank (should be coded n.a.)

Description of Activities Requirement #5:

(ar_#5dsc)

Description

Describes what is required for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Participation in allowable JOBS activities to the extent these services are available.

Activities Requirement #5 applies to:

(ar_#5who)

Description

Indicates to which group of non-exempt individuals Activities Requirements #5 applies.

Notes

See notes above under Special Issues.

Under AFDC

Non-exempt recipients

Activities Requirement #5: Hours required per week

(ar_#5hrs)

Description

Indicates the maximum and/or minimum hours of activity participation required for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes

Includes all available information.

Under AFDC

These was no minimum requirement under JOBS. However, custodial parents with children under the age of 6 and guaranteed child care were not required to participate for more than 20 hours per week.

Activities Requirements #5: Allowable activities include:

Basic or remedial education

(ar_#5bas)

Description

Indicates whether basic or remedial education are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in basic or remedial education for Activities Requirement #3.

Under AFDC

Yes

High school/GED

(ar_#5hsl)

Description

Indicates whether high school attendance or work towards a GED are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in high school or work towards a GED for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

ESL (English as a second language classes)

(ar_#5esl)

Description

Indicates whether English as a second language classes are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in English as a second language classes for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Post secondary education

(ar_#5pse)

Description

Indicates whether post secondary education attendance is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in post secondary education for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job skills training

(ar_#5jst)

Description

Indicates whether job skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job skills training for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job readiness activities

(ar_#5jrd)

Description

Indicates whether job readiness activities are allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job readiness activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job development and job placement

(ar_#5jdp)

Description

Indicates whether job development and job placement are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job development and job placement for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Job search

(ar_#5jbs)

Description

Indicates whether job search is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in job search for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

On-the-job training

(ar_#5otj)

Description

Indicates whether on-the-job training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in on-the-job training for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Unsubsidized job

(ar_#5uns)

Description

Indicates whether unsubsidized employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in unsubsidized employment for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Work supplementation or subsidized job

(ar_#5sub)

Description

Indicates whether work supplementation or subsidized employment are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in work supplementation or subsidized employment for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP)

(ar_#5cwe)

Description

Indicates whether Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) are allowable activities for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in Community Work Experience or Alternative Work Experience (CWEP/AWEP) for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

Yes

Self-employment

(ar_#5slf)

Description

Indicates whether self-employment is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in self-employment for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

No

Child care provider for others

(ar_#5ccp)

Description

Indicates whether providing child care for others is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can provide child care for others for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

No

Counseling

(ar_#5cns)

Description

Indicates whether counseling is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in counseling for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes

This variable captures any information on substance abuse or domestic violence treatment in particular.

Under AFDC

No

Life skills training

(ar_#5lfe)

Description

Indicates whether life skills training is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in life skills training for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

No

Community Service

(ar_#3com)

Description

Indicates whether community service is an allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in community service for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

No

Other

(ar_#5oth)

Description

Describes any other allowable activity for Activities Requirement #5.

Notes Description

Indicates the length of time an individual can participate in the activity described in ar_#5oth for Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

None

Activities Requirement #3: Total amount of time a unit may participate in any combination of allowed activities.

(ar_#5tot)

Description

Captures the total amount of time a unit can participate in any combination of allowed activities in Activities Requirement #5.

Under AFDC

No limit

Likelihood of different people being assigned to different activities

(ar_asign)

Description

Captures any information available in the manuals concerning policies that place certain types of people into one set of activities instead of another set of activities

Under AFDC

n.a.

This information was captured in the Work Requirement Outcomes

Work Requirement Time Limit

Is there a "Work Requirement Time Limit"?

(ar_wrqtl)

Description

Does the state have a "work requirement time limit," defined by the following:

After a certain number of assistance months, the state requires the parent/caregiver to work at least 20 hours per week in a "real job" (i.e. a subsidized or unsubsidized job, participation in CWEP/AWEP, self employment or work as a child care provider). Failure to meet this requirement must result in one of the following sanctions to qualify as a "work requirement time limit": removal of the parent/caregiver when calculating benefits or ineligibility of entire unit. Finally, the failure to meet the requirement is only considered a "work requirement time limit" if the penalty is imposed until compliance or for the lifetime of the unit.

Under AFDC

No

Months after which work is required

(ar_wrqmo)

Description

Captures the number of months after which work is required under the "work requirement time limit"

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate number of months
  • n.a., if the state does not have a "work requirement time limit"

Under AFDC

n.a.

Sanction imposed for non-compliance

(ar_wrsan)

Description

Description of sanction imposed for not complying with the "work requirement time limit"

Alternatives:

  • The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation
  • Entire unit is ineligible
  • n.a., if the state does not have a "work requirement time limit"

Under AFDC

n.a.

Duration of Sanction

(ar_wrsdr)

Description

Duration of sanction imposed for not complying with the "work requirement time limit"

Alternatives:

  • Lifetime
  • Until compliance
  • n.a., if the state does not have a "work requirement time limit"

Under AFDC

n.a.

For additional information see Activities Requirement # ?

(ar_wradd)

Description

Number associated with the Activities Requirement (in the database) where additional information on the "work requirement time limit" is coded.

Alternatives:

  • Activities Requirement #1
  • Activities Requirement #2
  • Activities Requirement #3
  • n.a., if the state does not have a "work requirement time limit"

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding Activities Requirements.

Activities Sanctions

Description:

This category captures the sanctions imposed on non-exempt recipients that do not comply with the activities requirements outlined in the Activities Requirements category. Each sanction in the state is outlined beginning with the first sanction imposed for non-compliance with the Activities Requirement #1 (Activities Sanction #1). After each sanction for Activities Requirement #1 is coded in the order in which they would be imposed, the first sanction for failing to meet Activities Requirement #2 is coded. This process continues for all activities requirements and their corresponding sanctions. The details pertaining to each sanction include: the reasons for imposing the sanction, whether a conciliation process exists, whether the sanction includes a benefit reduction, the details of the sanction and the effect of the sanction on other assistance programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs. This category also provides a variable that summarizes the worst case sanction imposed in the state for failing to meet an activities requirement. In order to completely understand when this sanction is imposed, users must read through the detailed listing of all the possible sanctions.

Overlap Issues:

·The Activities Sanctions category must be used in conjunction with two other categories. The Activities Exemptions category captures the individuals that are exempt from any requirements. The Activities Requirements category outlines the activities requirements that apply to non-exempt individuals.

·This category is coded using the exact exemption criteria for each state's formal activities/work program, as outlined in each state's manual and/or regulations. Some states exempt children and minor parents from their formal activities programs, while other states do not. If dependent children and/or minor parents are not exempt (that is, their activities requirements are considered a part of the state's formal activities program), their sanctions for not meeting the requirements are coded in this category. However, the activities sanctions for dependent children and minor parents are also captured in the School Policies for Dependent Children and Minor Parent Activity Requirements and Bonuses categories, respectively, regardless of whether or not they are exempt from the state's formal activities program.

Special Issues:

·Sanctions should be coded in the order in which they are imposed.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Worst Case Sanction

(as_worst)

Description

Describes the worst case sanction for non-compliance with an Activities Requirement

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after the disregards described below) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The individual is sanctioned for X months or until compliance, whichever is longer. The sanctioned individual receives the following disregards: (describe the disregards). If the head is sanctioned, the benefit is issued to a protective payee.

Under AFDC

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after standard disregards) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The individual is sanctioned for 6 months or until compliance, whichever is longer. If the head is sanctioned, the benefit is issued to a protective payee.

Activities Sanction #1

Activities Sanction #1 is the result of:

(as_#1why)

Description

Captures the circumstances under which Activities Sanction #1 is imposed (i.e. Failure of Non-exempt recipients to comply with Activities Requirement #1).

Under AFDC

Sanction #1:

Failure of non-exempt recipient to comply with activities requirement #1 without good cause for the first time

Activities Sanction #1: Is there a conciliation process?

(as_#1cnc)

Description

Indicates whether or not there is a conciliation process through which participates can correct the situation/problem before Activities Sanction #1 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #1: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(as_#1bnr)

Description

Indicates whether or not Activities Sanction #1 results in a reduction of benefits for the unit.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #1: Description of sanction (amount)

(as_#1dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of Activities Sanction #1.

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after the disregards described below) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The sanctioned individual receives the following disregards: (describe the disregards).

Under AFDC

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after standard disregards) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The individual is sanctioned until compliance. If the head is sanctioned, the benefit is issued to a protective payee.

Activities Sanction #1: Description of sanction (duration)

(as_#1dur)

Description

Describes the duration of Activities Sanction #1.

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The individual is sanctioned until compliance.

Under AFDC

The individual is sanctioned until compliance.

Activities Sanction #1: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care.

(as_#1fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of Activities Sanction #1 on the unit's receipt of benefits from other programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs.

Notes

This variable should be coded in the following manner:

Food Stamps: (Describe the effect on Food Stamps)

Medicaid: (Describe the effect on Medicaid)

Child care: (Describe the effect on child care subsidies)

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

Unknown

Activities Sanction #2

Activities Sanction #2 is the result of:

(as_#2why)

Description

Captures the circumstances under which Activities Sanction #2 is imposed (i.e. Failure of Non-exempt recipients to comply with Activities Requirement #1).

Under AFDC

Sanction #2:

Failure of non-exempt recipient to comply with activities requirement #1 without good cause for the second time

Activities Sanction #2: Is there a conciliation process?

(as_#2cnc)

Description

Indicates whether or not there is a conciliation process through which participates can correct the situation/problem before Activities Sanction #2 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #2: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(as_#2bnr)

Description

Indicates whether or not Activities Sanction #2 results in a reduction of benefits for the unit.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #2: Description of sanction (amount)

(as_#2dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of Activities Sanction #2.

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after the disregards described below) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The sanctioned individual receives the following disregards: (describe the disregards).

Under AFDC

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after standard disregards) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. If the head is sanctioned, the benefit is issued to a protective payee.

Activities Sanction #2: Description of sanction (duration)

(as_#2dur)

Description

Describes the duration of Activities Sanction #2.

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The individual is sanctioned for 3 months or until compliance, whichever is longer.

Under AFDC

The individual is sanctioned for 3 months or until compliance, whichever is longer.

Activities Sanction #2: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care.

(as_#2fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of Activities Sanction #2 on the unit's receipt of benefits from other programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs.

Notes

This variable should be coded in the following manner:

Food Stamps: (Describe the effect on Food Stamps)

Medicaid: (Describe the effect on Medicaid)

Child care: (Describe the effect on child care subsidies)

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

Unknown

Activities Sanction #3

Activities Sanction #3 is the result of:

(as_#3why)

Description

Captures the circumstances under which Activities Sanction #3 is imposed (i.e. Failure of Non-exempt recipients to comply with Activities Requirement #1).

Under AFDC

Sanction #3:

Failure of non-exempt recipient to comply with activities requirement #1 without good cause for the third or subsequent time

Activities Sanction #3: Is there a conciliation process?

(as_#3cnc)

Description

Indicates whether or not there is a conciliation process through which participates can correct the situation/problem before Activities Sanction #3 is imposed.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #3: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(as_#3bnr)

Description

Indicates whether or not Activities Sanction #3 results in a reduction of benefits for the unit.

Under AFDC

Yes

Activities Sanction #3: Description of sanction (amount)

(as_#3dsc)

Description

Describes the amount ofActivities Sanction #3

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after the disregards described below) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. The sanctioned individual receives the following disregards: (describe the disregards).

Under AFDC

The needs of the sanctioned individual are not included for benefit calculation; however, their income (after standard disregards) and assets are still included for eligibility and benefit calculation purposes. If the head is sanctioned, the benefit is issued to a protective payee.

Activities Sanction #3: Description of sanction (duration)

(as_#3dur)

Description

Describes the duration of Activities Sanction #3.

Notes:

If the sanction is similar to JOBS except the disregards are different from the standard disregards for that state and year, the response reads as follows:

The individual is sanctioned for 6 months or until compliance, whichever is longer.

Under AFDC

The individual is sanctioned for 6 months or until compliance, whichever is longer.

Activities Sanction #3: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care.

(as_#3fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of Activities Sanction #3 on the unit's receipt of benefits from other programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs.

Notes

This variable should be coded in the following manner:

Food Stamps: (Describe the effect on Food Stamps)

Medicaid: (Describe the effect on Medicaid)

Child care: (Describe the effect on child care subsidies)

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

Unknown

Activities Sanction #4

Activities Sanction #4 is the result of:

(as_#4why)

Description

Captures the circumstances under which Activities Sanction #4 is imposed (i.e. Failure of Non-exempt recipients to comply with Activities Requirement #1).

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #4: Is there a conciliation process?

(as_#4cnc)

Description

Indicates whether or not there is a conciliation process through which participates can correct the situation/problem before Activities Sanction #4 is imposed.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #4: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(as_#4bnr)

Description

Indicates whether or not Activities Sanction #4 results in a reduction of benefits for the unit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #4: Description of sanction (amount)

(as_#4dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of Activities Sanction #4.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #4: Description of sanction (duration)

(as_#4dur)

Description

Describes the duration of Activities Sanction #4.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #4: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care.

(as_#4fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of Activities Sanction #4 on the unit's receipt of benefits from other programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs.

Notes

This variable should be coded in the following manner:

Food Stamps: (Describe the effect on Food Stamps)

Medicaid: (Describe the effect on Medicaid)

Child care: (Describe the effect on child care subsidies)

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5

Activities Sanction #5 is the result of:

(as_#5why)

Description

Captures the circumstances under which Activities Sanction #5 is imposed (i.e. Failure of Non-exempt recipients to comply with Activities Requirement #1).

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5: Is there a conciliation process?

(as_#5cnc)

Description

Indicates whether or not there is a conciliation process through which participates can correct the situation/problem before Activities Sanction #5 is imposed.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(as_#5bnr)

Description

Indicates whether or not Activities Sanction #5 results in a reduction of benefits for the unit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5: Description of sanction (amount)

(as_#5dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of Activities Sanction #5.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5: Description of sanction (duration)

(as_#5dur)

Description

Describes the duration of Activities Sanction #5.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Activities Sanction #5: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care.

(as_#5fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of Activities Sanction #5 on the unit's receipt of benefits from other programs, such as Food Stamps, Medicaid and child care subsidy programs.

Notes

This variable should be coded in the following manner:

Food Stamps: (Describe the effect on Food Stamps)

Medicaid: (Describe the effect on Medicaid)

Child care: (Describe the effect on child care subsidies)

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding Activities Sanctions.

Asset Test

Description:

Asset Test includes information on the type and amount of assets an assistance unit may hold. Some states have two separate asset limits. One policy limits the value of unrestricted assets. The other limits the value of assets set aside for a designated purpose. These types of programs are often called Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). IDAs and other restricted savings programs are referred to as restricted asset limits. In addition, the category outlines the value of a vehicle that is exempt and whether a vehicle's value is based on equity or fair market value.

Some assets have historically been excluded when determining eligibility and benefits. It is assumed that these types of income are excluded unless mentioned in the "Additional notes" section.

Historically excluded assets:

Bona fide funeral agreement, burial trust or contract up to $1,500 per unit member

Burial plot for each unit member

Home Property

Essential household items/Furnishings

Assets which are essential for self-employment

Federally Excluded Payments:

Native American judgement funds

Relocation Assistance

Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act

Any bona fide loan

Any grant, loan, or work study payment for an undergraduate's education

Payments to volunteers under Title 1

Supplemental food assistance under the Child Nutrition Act

Supplemental food assistance under the National School Lunch Act

Reimbursements to foster grandparents, senior health aides or senior companions

HUD utility cost subsidy and retroactive tax

Disaster Relief

Agent Orange Settlement Payments

Radiation Exposure Compensation

Japanese Restitution

Payments to victims of Nazi prosecution

Life Insurance Policies

Energy Assistance Payments

Overlap Issues:

  • IDA and similar restricted savings programs are captured in this category. If a state allows assistance units to disregard current earnings placed into a regular savings account during the month received (a policy separate from IDA and the like), the rule is captured in the Earned Income Disregards category.
  • Some states classify EITC and lump sums payments as assets; however, they are coded in the Countable Income category.
  • Special treatment of children's assets is captured in the Income and Assets of Children category

Special Issues:

  • States often have different limits for applicants and recipients. For these states, 2 records are coded based on Unit Type: one for applicants and one for recipients.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Amount of countable assets that can be held with no restrictions

at_unres

Description

Indicates the unrestricted asset/resource limit.

Alternatives:

  • Designated value
  • No limit, if state does not have an asset restriction

Under AFDC

Starting in 1981, countable assets were limited to no more than $1000.

Amount of countable assets that can be held with restrictions

at_restr

Description

Indicates the allowable value of assets that can be held for a particular use, often referred to as IDAs (Individual Development Accounts).

Alternatives:

  • Designated value
  • 0, if no amount of restricted assets is allowed
  • No limit, if an unlimited amount is allowed

Under AFDC

0, because no restricted assets were allowed.

Nature of restrictions on use of assets

at_rtype

Description

Captures the permitted uses of restricted allowable assets.

Under AFDC

Not applicable (n.a.). Special savings accounts did not exist.

Is the restricted savings account an IDA?

Description

Captures whether the restricted savings account is an Individual Savings Account (IDA).

Under AFDC

Not applicable (n.a.). Special savings accounts did not exist.

How much is the match rate?

Description

Captures the rate at which recipient's savings are matched by the state or some designated organization.

Under AFDC

Not applicable (n.a.). Special savings accounts did not exist.

If there is a match rate, who matches?

Description

Describes who matches the funds in recipient's savings accounts. Typically this is the state or some designated organization in the community.

Under AFDC

Not applicable (n.a.). Special savings accounts did not exist.

Portion of vehicle value that is exempted

at_vehex

Description

Indicates the value of the vehicle that does not count toward the asset limit.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate value
  • No limit
  • One Vehicle Per Household
  • One Vehicle Per Licensed Driver

Under AFDC

Recently $1500

Is the vehicle value based on equity or fair market value

at_vehva

Description

Describes whether the value of a vehicle is assessed in terms of equity or fair market value. Equity value of a car equals the fair market value minus to the amount still owed on the car.

Alternatives:

  • Equity
  • Fair market value
  • Other (Options indicated)

Under AFDC

Equity value

Additional Notes

at_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding Asset Test.

 

 

Benefit Computation

Description:

This category examines how benefits are calculated for an assistance unit. Under AFDC, benefits varied from assistance unit to assistance unit based on each unit's net income (as well as by family size). However, under waivers and TANF, benefits may vary by hours worked or may be set at a flat amount. This category outlines the benefit formula as well as the dollar amounts used in the formula. It also captures whether a state prorates benefits for assistance units who share a living space with non-recipients. Finally, the category includes information regarding the benefit calculation for assistance units who have recently moved to the state.

Overlap Issues:

  • Definitions of State Dollar Amounts #1-3 are contained in the Dollar Amount category.
  • The exact values of the Benefit Standard and Maximum Benefit for all family sizes are contained in the Dollar Amount category.
  • The definition of net income for a given state in calculated based on information contained in Countable Income, Income and Assets of Children, Earned Income Disregards, Child Support, Family Caps, In Kind Income and Deemed Income.

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

What is the basic type of monthly cash benefit?

bc_btype

Description

Describes how benefits vary between assistance units.

Alternatives:

  • Varies by net income
  • Varies by hours worked
  • Flat benefit amount
  • No monthly cash benefit
  • Other (fill in the method)

Under AFDC

Varies by level of net income

If benefit varies by net income: What is the method of benefit computation?

bc_bform

Description

Describes the benefit formula used when a state's benefit varies by net income (as under the traditional AFDC-type program).

Alternatives:

  • Benefit Standard minus Net Income
  • Smaller of (Benefit Standard minus Net Income) or Maximum Benefit
  • Percentage of (Benefit Standard minus Net Income)
  • Smaller of (Percentage of (Benefit Standard minus Net Income)) or Maximum Benefit
  • Other (formula indicated)

Notes

Some state manual indicate the percentage of the need standard used as the payment standard. For these states, the payment standard id calculated as a separate dollar amount using this percentage. The dollar amount, not the percentage, is coded in the database.

The aforementioned percentage is often referred to as the deficit payment percentage.

Under AFDC

Any of the first four formulas were used, depending on the state and year.

If benefit varies by net income: What is the benefit standard?

bc_bcbstd

Description

Specifies the dollar amount used as the benefit standard, if the formula described under bc_bform uses a benefit standard.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line
  • Other (amount indicated)
  • n.a., if Benefit Standard is not used in the formula

Notes

State dollar amounts are defined in the Dollar Amounts category.

Under AFDC

State dollar amount #2, which was used as the payment standard.

If benefit varies by net income: What is the maximum benefit?

bc_bemax

Description

Specifies the dollar amount used as the maximum benefit, if the formula described under bc_bform uses a maximum benefit.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line
  • Other (fill in the amount)
  • n.a., if Maximum Benefit is not used in the formula

Notes

State dollar amounts are defined in the Dollar Amounts category.

Under AFDC

State dollar amount #3 was used as the maximum payment.

If benefit varies by net income: What is the percentage?

bc_bepct

Description

Specifies the percentage used, if the formula described under bc_bform uses a percentage.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate percentage
  • n.a., if a percentage is not used in the formula.

Notes

The percentage is often referred to as the deficit payment percentage.

Under AFDC

An appropriate percentage was entered for the state or n.a.

If benefit varies by net income: The minimum benefit that confers technical program eligibility

bc_minel

Description

Describes the minimum benefit required for an assistance unit to be "technically eligible." Technical eligibility means that the assistance unit is treated like an AFDC/TANF family for other purposes (such as Medicaid and Food Stamps eligibility), but does not necessarily receive a cash benefit if its computed dollar value is less than bc_bemin.

Alternatives:

  • Designated Amount
  • All Positive Amounts

Under AFDC

0

If benefit varies by net income: What the minimum benefit that will be paid

bc_bemin

Description

Specifies a state's minimum benefit level. If the benefit computed is less than this amount, the assistance unit will not receive a benefit payment, even though the unit may be technically eligible.

Under AFDC

10

Describe the method for rounding the benefit:

bc_bernd

Description

Specifies the state's practices for rounding the benefit.

Under AFDC

This variable is only coded from 2006 forward.

If the benefit is a flat amount: Benefit is given by:

bc_bflat

Description

Indicates the dollar amount used as the benefit, if the state's benefit is a flat dollar amount.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line
  • Other (fill in the amount)

Notes

State dollar amounts are defined in the Dollar Amounts category.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes:

bc_other

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding benefit calculation.

Child Support

Description:

The Child Support category contains information on each state's child support enforcement rules that impact welfare recipients. The variables focus only on requirements and policies affecting the custodial parent and do not concentrate on license suspension, new-hire reporting, and other rules that affect the non-custodial parent.

The Child Support Enforcement law of 1975 provided federal matching funds to states in order to identify, located and collect child support from fathers. This legislation introduced many new requirements and established child support distribution policies for AFDC applicants and recipients. These policies include requiring all recipients to assign their support rights to the state, to cooperate in establishing paternity and securing support and creating pass-through and fill-the-gap policies. Although these polices were federal standards, under AFDC waivers, states began experimenting with different pass-through amounts and cooperation requirements. Under TANF, the state must still enforce child support collection, but they are allowed extensive program flexibility.

Overlap Issues:

·Sanctions for non-cooperation with child support enforcement are coded in the Child Support Sanctions category.

·Information on calculating the assistant unit's benefit is captured in the Benefit Computation category, but the child support pass-through and child support counted as unearned income are discussed only in the Child Support category.

·The amount of unearned income from child support payments that is disregarded is not captured in the Earned Income Disregard category, but is captured here.

Special Issues:

None

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

What must a custodial parent do to cooperate with the child support agency in identifying and locating noncustodial parent, establishing paternity, and obtaining payment? (cs_coopr)

Description

Captures what a custodial parent must do in order to cooperate with the child support agency, including establishing paternity, as well as, identifying and locating the noncustodial parent.

Under AFDC

Custodial parents had to cooperate to establish paternity and obtain payments. Cooperation was defined by Federal law, as the following:

"Cooperation includes any of the following actions that are necessary for identifying and locating a parent, establishing paternity, obtaining support payments, or obtaining other payments: appearing at state/local child support agency to provide information and documentation, appearing as a witness at judicial hearings or proceedings, providing information or attesting to lack of it under penalty of perjury, or paying the child support agency any payments received from the absent parent. (Section 232.12 (a) and (b), 45 CFR Ch.II)"

Does the state add to the unit's benefit the part of the child support collection that would have caused no reduction in the grant if paid directly to the family (Fill-the-Gap)?

(cs_ftgap)

Description

Captures whether the state uses fill-the-gap policy to provide supplemental payments to assistance units in order for them to be no worse off then if they had received the entire child support payment.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC:

This supplemental amount was required in certain states, sometimes called the "fill the gap" states.

When the federal government changed the child support rules for AFDC units in 1975 (requiring payments to be made to the child support agency instead of the unit, and instituting the $50 pass through) the changes could have made some units worse off, depending on the exact benefit formulas used in their state. The supplemental payment was required in those states to prevent any units from being worse off. In each year since 1975, states were required to make the supplemental payments if (a) they had a benefit formula in 1975 that could have resulted in some families losing benefits, and (b) they still had that type of formula. In 1996, there were 8 of these states.

Amount of the child support collection added to the AFDC payment as a "pass through" :

(cs_pasth)

Description

Captures the amount of child support added to the unit's benefit as a pass-through.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Designated portion of total payment
  • 0, none of total payment

Notes

This variable is only coded if the entire child support amount available to the unit is also disregarded from eligibility and benefit calculations.

If this variable is positive, cs_incme= 0, and vice versa

Under AFDC

Since 1975, the federal government has required AFDC units to assign their child support rights to the state. As a result, child support paid on behalf of the unit went to the child support agency instead of the unit. However, the state was required to give the first $50 of support received to the unit as a pass-through. This amount was not included in the eligibility or benefit calculations. So, essentially this amount was added the unit's AFDC benefit each month.

Amount of the child support payment transferred to the family as unearned income:

(cs_incme)

Description

Captures the amount of the child support payment transferred to the unit as unearned income.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Designated portion of total payment
  • 0, none of total payment

Notes

This variable is only coded if a portion of or none of the child support amount available to the unit is disregarded from eligibility and benefit calculations.

If this variable is positive, cs_pasth=0 and vice versa.

Under AFDC

The child support payment was not treated like unearned income but rather just "passed through" to the family.

Of the child support payment transferred as unearned income, how much is disregarded?

(cs_dsrgd)

Description

Identifies the amount of the child support transferred as unearned income that is disregarded.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Designated portion of total payment
  • 0, none of total payment

Under AFDC

Child support was not treated as unearned income (since 1975), so the concept of an income disregard does not apply. Zero is used for not applicable.

Does the state provide child support assurance?

(cs_asure)

Description

Indicates whether the state ensures that every assistance unit with a child support enforcement order receives their payment every month regardless of whether any support is collected on the family's behalf.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Explanation of the child support assurance:

(cs_asdsc)

Description

Describes the states child support assurance program.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding child support.

Child Support Sanctions

Description:

The Child Support Sanctions category includes information on sanctions resulting from the failure to meet child support cooperation requirements.

The consequence of failing to meet a child support cooperation requirement is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Most often, this penalty is financial. Requiring the distribution of benefits through a protective payee is also considered a sanction because it directly impacts the receipt of benefits. However, consequences that are designed to avoid a financial or other direct penalty are considered conciliation processes, not sanctions. For example, consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem, and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are forms of conciliation and therefore are not included as a sanction.

Sanctions often are chronological. For example, the first time non-cooperation occurs, sanction #1 applies. If the problem continues or recurs despite the first sanction, then sanction #2 and sanction #3 applies.

Under AFDC there was only one sanction policy; the custodial parent was removed from the grant until compliance. However, under TANF, states have much more flexibility. Although the federal government requires a minimum sanction of 25% of the benefit be deducted for noncompliance, states may eliminate up to the entire benefit and may create a series of sanction policies.

 

Overlap Issues:

·The child support sanctions category corresponds to the Child Support category. All sanctions stem from the failure to cooperate with child support enforcement requirements.

Special Issues:

None

Variable and Notes:

Description Notes

Worst case sanction: (ss_worst)

Description

Describes the most severe penalty imposed as a result of failing to meet child support cooperation requirements. The worst case sanction variable includes a description of the sanction and, if relevant, the duration of the sanction.

Notes

This variable contains the same information found in the "Description of sanction" variable corresponding to the most severe penalty.

For example: "Unit size for benefit computation excludes the adult recipient for twelve months."

Under AFDC

Removal of the custodial parent from the benefit.

Child Support sanction #1 the result of:

(ss_#1why)

Description

Captures why child support sanction #1 is imposed on the unit.

Notes

This variable is generally straightforward but a few instructions are necessary.

1. Chronological sanction are clearly outlined. For example, "First failure to...."

2. A sanction that results from a particular person's failure are explicitly described. For example, "Failure of adult to...."

3. A consequence of failing to meet the requirements is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem, and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are all considered forms of conciliation. However, if the direct penalty does occur after this type of conciliation process, that should be explained.

Under AFDC

Noncompliance with child support requirements.

Child Support sanction #1: Is there a conciliation process that recipient can go through to correct the problem before the sanction goes into effect?

(ss_#1cnc)

Description

Captures whether child support sanction #1 can be avoided through a conciliation process.

Alternatives:

Yes

No

Notes

As discussed above, most non-financial consequences of failing to meet a cooperation requirement are considered part of conciliation processes. States may also have general provisions for conciliation without specifying a process. The details of the conciliation, if given, are written in this variable's notes.

Under AFDC

There was a conciliation process under AFDC.

Child Support sanction #1: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(ss_#1bnr)

Description

Identifies whether child support sanction #1 reduces the unit's benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

The benefit was reduced under AFDC.

Child Support sanction #1: Description of sanction (ss_#1dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of child support sanction #1.

Notes

Examples include:

When the sanction is described by the state as the removal of the parent and/or child from the assistance unit for the purpose of benefit determination, or as the exclusion of the parent's and/or child's needs, this is uniformly coded as, "Unit size for benefit computation excludes" child, parent, or whomever.

Under AFDC

Removal of the custodial parent from the benefit.

Child Support sanction #1: Description of the duration of the sanction (ss_#1dur)

Description

Describes the duration of child support sanction #1.

Under AFDC

The individual is sanctioned until compliance.

Child Support sanction #1: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid, and child care

(ss_#1fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of child support sanction #1 on the unit's receipt of Food Stamps, Medicaid, and/or child care.

Notes

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

Unknown

Child Support sanction #2 the result of:

(ss_#2why)

Description

Captures why child support sanction #2 is imposed on the unit.

Notes

This variable is generally straight-forward but a few instructions are necessary.

1. Chronological sanction are clearly outlined. For example, "First failure to...."

2. A sanction that results from a particular person's failure are explicitly described. For example, "Failure of adult to...."

3. A consequence of failing to meet the requirements is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem, and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are all considered forms of conciliation. However, if the direct penalty does occur after this type of conciliation process, that should be explained.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #2: Is there a conciliation process that recipient can go through to correct the problem before the sanction goes into effect?

(ss_#2cnc)

Description

Captures whether child support sanction #2 can be avoided through a conciliation process.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

As discussed above, most non-financial consequences of failing to meet a cooperation requirement are considered part of conciliation processes. States may also have general provisions for conciliation without specifying a process. The details of the conciliation, if given, are written in this variable's notes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #2: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(ss_#2bnr)

Description

Identifies whether child support sanction #2 reduces the unit's benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #2: Description of sanction

(ss_#2dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of child support sanction #2.

Notes

Examples include:

When the sanction is described by the state as the removal of the parent and/or child from the assistance unit for the purpose of benefit determination, or as the exclusion of the parent's and/or child's needs, this is uniformly coded as, "Unit size for benefit computation excludes" child, parent, or whomever.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #2: Description of the duration of the sanction (ss_#2dur)

Description

Describes the duration of child support sanction #2.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #2: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid, and child care

(ss_#2fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of child support sanction #2 on the unit's receipt of Food Stamps, Medicaid, and/or child care.

Notes

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3 the result of:

(ss_#3why)

Description

Captures why child support sanction #3 is imposed on the unit.

Notes

This variable is generally straight-forward but a few instructions are necessary.

1. Chronological sanction are clearly outlined. For example, "First failure to...."

2. Sanction that result from a particular person's failure are explicitly described. For example, "Failure of adult to...."

3. A consequence of failing to meet the requirements is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem, and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are all considered forms of conciliation. However, if the direct penalty does occur after this type of conciliation process, that should be explained.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3: Is there a conciliation process that recipient can go through to correct the problem before the sanction goes into effect?

(ss_#3cnc)

Description

Captures whether child support sanction #3 can be avoided through a conciliation process.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

As discussed above, most non-financial consequences of failing to meet a cooperation requirement are considered part of conciliation processes. States may also have general provisions for conciliation without specifying a process. The details of the conciliation, if given, are written in this variable's notes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3: Does the sanction result in benefit reduction?

(ss_#3bnr)

Description

Identifies whether child support sanction #3 reduces the unit's benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3: Description of sanction

(ss_#3dsc)

Description

Describes the amount of child support sanction #3.

Notes

Examples include:

When the sanction is described by the state as the removal of the parent and/or child from the assistance unit for the purpose of benefit determination, or as the exclusion of the parent's and/or child's needs, this is uniformly coded as, "Unit size for benefit computation excludes" child, parent, or whomever.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3: Description of the duration of the sanction (ss_#3dur)

Description

Describes the duration of child support sanction #3.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Child Support sanction #3: Effect of sanction on other programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid, and child care

(ss_#3fsm)

Description

Describes the effect of child support sanction #3 on the unit's receipt of Food Stamps, Medicaid, and/or child care.

Notes

When the information is not available, code it "?".

States are most likely to specify that a sanction which excludes a family member's needs for benefit computation does not exclude them from Medicaid eligibility. In this case, the effect of the sanction on Medicaid is coded "none".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding child support sanctions.

Components

Description:

This category summarizes the components in effect in a given state for a given year. Components exist in a state if the state divides its caseload into mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive groups that are treated differently across more than one category of rules. Furthermore, the definitions of the groups involve more than one characteristic, eliminating the possibility of coding the different groups using the Unit Type variable.

Due to the difficulty of determining when components exist, a rule of thumb has been established. Code groups as components when the state treats the groups separately. A state may indicate that it views the groups separately in several ways. If the state capitalized the name of each group in their manual or regulations, these groups are treated as different components in the database. Alternatively, if the state uses bold type for the group names, these groups are also treated as different components in the database.

For example, Montana has three components that were created under their waiver (Families Achieving Independence for Montana) and continued under TANF. The three components (as named by the state) are: the Job Supplement Program (JSP), the Pathways Program and the Community Service Program (CSP).

  • JSP: This program is intended to divert applicants from welfare receipt by providing support services (such as, Medicaid and child care assistance) and a one-time employment-related payment. This program is completely optional and participants must still meet AFDC/TANF eligibility requirements.

  • Pathways: New applicants who do not opt for the JSP are required to participate in Pathways. Pathways requires a family to complete a Family Investment Agreement (FIA) and limits benefits for adults to 24 months. After the time limit expires, the family enters the CSP.

  • CSP: Recipients whose time limits have expired are moved in CPS. CPS requires that recipients participate in job search or community service for 20 hours per week in order to continue receiving benefits.

Overlap Issues:

  • Components coded in this category may or may not appear in other categories of the database. If a state has two or more components, each component has a separate record for the categories in which the rules vary by component. If the rules do not differ by component for a particular category, separate records are not coded.

Special Issues:

  • The Component key variable is always coded 0.

  • The Unit Type key variable is always coded All (1).

Variables and Notes:

Variables Notes

Component 1

Name of Component 1

(co_1name)

Description

Name of Component 1 as given by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Description of Component 1

(co_1desc)

Description

Indicates whom may/must participate in Component 1 and provides a brief description of the component members' requirements.

Notes

The description can be brief because the details regarding specific policies are captured in other categories in the database.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Allowable Time in the Component 1

(co_1time)

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit may participate in Component 1.

Alternatives:

  • Designated amount of time, including units (months or years)
  • Period that ends after the completion of a particular requirement (i.e. Until high diploma or GED is earned)
  • No time limit

Under AFDC

n.a.

Component 2

Name of Component 2

(co_2name)

Description

Name of Component 2 as given by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Description of Component 2

(co_2desc)

Description

Indicates whom may/must participate in Component 2 and provides a brief description of the component members' requirements.

Notes

The description can be brief because the details regarding specific policies are captured in other categories in the database.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Allowable Time in the Component 2

(co_2time)

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit may participate in Component 2.

Alternatives:

  • Designated amount of time, including units (months or years)
  • Period that ends after the completion of a particular requirement (i.e. Until high diploma or GED is earned)
  • No time limit

Under AFDC

n.a.

Component 3

Name of Component 3

(co_3name)

Description

Name of Component 3 as given by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Description of Component 3

(co_3desc)

Description

Indicates whom may/must participate in Component 3 and provides a brief description of the component members' requirements.

Notes

The description can be brief because the details regarding specific policies are captured in other categories in the database.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Allowable Time in the Component 3

(co_3time)

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit may participate in Component 3.

Alternatives:

  • Designated amount of time, including units (months or years)
  • Period that ends after the completion of a particular requirement (i.e. Until high diploma or GED is earned)
  • No time limit

Under AFDC

n.a.

Component 4

Name of Component 4

(co_4name)

Description

Name of Component 4 as given by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Description of Component 4

(co_4desc)

Description

Indicates whom may/must participate in Component 4 and provides a brief description of the component members' requirements.

Notes

The description can be brief because the details regarding specific policies are captured in other categories in the database.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Allowable Time in the Component 4

(co_4time)

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit may participate in Component 4.

Alternatives:

  • Designated amount of time, including units (months or years)
  • Period that ends after the completion of a particular requirement (i.e. Until high diploma or GED is earned)
  • No time limit

Under AFDC

n.a.

Component 5

Name of Component 5

(co_5name)

Description

Name of Component 5 as given by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Description of Component 5

(co_5desc)

Description

Indicates whom may/must participate in Component 5 and provides a brief description of the component members' requirements.

Notes

The description can be brief because the details regarding specific policies are captured in other categories in the database.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Allowable Time in the Component 5

(co_5time)

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit may participate in Component 5.

Alternatives:

  • Designated amount of time, including units (months or years)
  • Period that ends after the completion of a particular requirement (i.e. Until high diploma or GED is earned)
  • No time limit

Under AFDC

n.a.

Describe the interaction between components and/or the movement of assistance units between components

(co_inter)

Description

Captures any information regarding how each of the components relate to the others, as well as how units move between components (if applicable).

Notes

In some states components apply to specific types of units and units do not move between components unless the structure of the unit changes. In other states, units move from one component to the next in a designated order. A short description of either type of component system should be coded in this variable.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding components

Contracts and Agreements

Description:

This category fulfills a dual purpose. First, it identifies whether a state has a formal contract, agreement, or plan with recipients. If so, this category outlines the requirements included in that agreement. In addition, the category provides a summary of a state's behavioral requirements.

The following requirements are included in this category:

  1. time limits
  2. minor parent residency requirements
  3. cooperation with child support enforcement
  4. drug and alcohol screening and/or treatment
  5. immunization and/or health screening
  6. school requirements including attendance, and parental involvement
  7. parenting classes/family skills training
  8. other behavioral requirements.

This category does not include employment and training requirements nor does it include agreements that only include employment and training requirements.

For each type of requirement, the Contracts and Agreements category has two yes/no variables. The first variable identifies whether or not the requirement is included in a formal agreement. The second variable identifies whether or not the requirement is required at all, regardless of whether or not it is included in an agreement. Different states may have the same requirements, but one state may put the requirements in a formal, written agreement, while the other state may have the requirements without an agreement.

Sometimes the content of the agreement depends on the needs of the recipient; therefore, the items included in an agreement vary for different recipients in a state. For example, minor parent residency requirements are included only in minor parent recipients contracts. Consequently, "required" is defined as "required for someone, not necessarily everyone." If an item, such as minor parent residency requirement, is at least sometimes included in an agreement, the "included in agreement" column should be coded "yes" and the "required" column should also be coded "yes."

Under AFDC, states with approved waivers could use contracts and agreements. TANF neither requires nor prohibits contracts and agreements.

Coding:

If the manual indicates that the agreement will include items "such as...", code yes in the "Included in Contract" column for those items specifically mentioned and ? for the other items that could possibly be included (i.e. those required regardless of the agreement and those not mentioned in the manual). Similarly, if the manual states that the agreement "will include items x, y, and z, and other requirements as appropriate," code yes in the "Included in Contract" column for those items specifically mentioned and ? for the other items that could possibly be included (i.e. those required regardless of the agreement and those not mentioned in the manual).

If you know that an item is not required, then code "no" for that item in the "Included in Contract" column because items that are not required cannot be included in the contract.

Included in Contract:

Yes = Yes, item is included in contract for at least some people covered by the record.

No = Agreement items are specified and this item was not mentioned as a requirement.

? = Agreement is said to include items "such as.." or "as necessary" or "at a minimum...", etc., implying that other items not specifically mentioned could be included in at least some of the Agreements.

Required:

Yes = Yes, item is required of at least some people covered by the record.

No = The item is not required of anyone covered by the record

? = Not mentioned in the manual, unsure if that means it is not required

Possible combinations: Combinations that are NOT possible:

Included in Agreement Required, whether or not included in Agreement   Included in Agreement Required, whether or not included in Agreement

No

No

 

?

No

No

Yes

 

Yes

No

?

?

 

Yes

?

?

Yes

     

Yes

Yes

     
         

Overlap Issues:

·This category does not include the details of the requirements, it merely summarizes whether the requirements exist. Details on time limit, minor parent residency, child support cooperation, immunization/health screening and school requirements can be found in their corresponding categories.

·Given these overlap issues, it may be simplest to code the Contracts and Agreements category after coding all other categories.

·Unit type for this category should always be coded as "All" (1). All distinction between provisions that are only required of certain unit types or individuals should be outlined in the notes variable corresponding to that provision.

Special Issues:

·Even if a state does not have a contract or agreement, the general requirement section of this form MUST be coded. Do Not Skip this Form!

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Is there any type of formal agreement, contract, or plan?

(ca_exist)

Description

Describes whether or not a state has a formal, written agreement listing the recipient's responsibilities. The list must include at least one of the items summarized in this category. If the list contains only employment related requirements, the agreement is not coded and this variable will be coded "No."

Alternatives:

  • Yes, code all the remaining variables in the category appropriately
  • No, the agreement specific questions should be coded n.a.; however, whether or not each item is required regardless of whether or not it is included in the agreement should be coded appropriately.

Under AFDC

No

Type of Agreement:

signed?

(ca_signd)

Description

Indicates whether or not the recipient must sign the agreement.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

Under AFDC

n.a.

Type of Agreement:

Negotiated

(ca_negtd)

Description

Indicates whether or not the recipient is involved in the development of the agreement.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

Under AFDC

n.a.

Worst case penalty for not entering into the agreement

(ca_pntly)

Description

Indicates the worst case penalty for not entering into the agreement, not the penalty for non-compliance with particular items in the agreement.

Alternatives:

  • Ineligibility for cash assistance

If not entering the agreement will lead to the loss of cash assistance to the entire family at any point. Total benefit loss may be the immediate result of not signing or it may be the ultimate result after several intermediate benefit decreases. The intermediate sanctions should be documented in the corresponding notes variable.

  • Fiscal sanction

If when the unit does not enter into the agreement, the unit continues to receive at least some cash assistance. For example, if the adult is excluded from the unit when calculating benefits. The details regarding the exact sanction should be describe in the corresponding notes variable.

  • Other

If another type of penalty is imposed. The details regarding the exact sanction should be describe in the corresponding notes variable.

  • None

If entering into the agreement is voluntary or if there is simply no penalty for not entering into the agreement.

  • n.a.

If state does not have an agreement

Notes

All details regarding the penalty are described in the corresponding notes variable, including the duration of the sanction and the treatment of the sanctioned individual's income.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Name of agreement

(ca_agnme)

Description

Indicates the name of the agreement, as designated in the state manual.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate name
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

Notes

If the agreement is called an "employability plan" be sure that it requires at least one item included in this category. For many years states have been developing "employability plans" for recipients that only include work-related requirements. To avoid confusion between these old plans and more general Agreements, employment requirements and agreements that only include employability requirements are not included in this category.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Time limits: Included in Agreement

(ca_tlinc)

Description

Indicates whether or not a time limit provision is included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Time limits: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_tlreq)

Description

Indicates whether or not at least some recipients are subject to a time limit. Details regarding the time limit policy are found in the Time Limit category.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Minor parent residency requirement: Included in Agreement

(ca_mpinc)

Description

Indicates whether or not a minor parent residency requirement provision is included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Minor parent residency requirement: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_mpreq

Description

Indicates whether or not minor parents are required to live with an adult or in some approved living arrangement. Details regarding the minor parent residency requirement policy are found in the Eligibility of Minor Parents category.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Cooperation with child support enforcement: Included in Agreement

(ca_csinc)

Description

Indicates whether or not cooperation with child support enforcement is included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Cooperation with child support enforcement: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_csreq)

Description

Indicates whether or not cooperation with child support enforcement is required in the state. Details regarding the cooperation with child support enforcement policy are found in the Child Support category.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Drug and alcohol screening and/or treatment: Included in Agreement

(ca_dginc)

Description

Indicates whether or not drug and alcohol screening and/or treatment is included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Drug and alcohol screening and/or treatment : Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_dgreq)

Description

Indicates whether or not drug and alcohol screening and/or treatment is required in the state. Details on this policy are captured in the corresponding notes variable.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Immunization and/or health screening: Included in Agreement

(ca_iminc)

Description

Indicates whether or not immunization and/or health screening provisions are included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Immunization and/or health screening: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_imreq)

Description

Indicates whether or not immunizations and/or health screenings are required in the state. Details regarding immunization and health screening policies are found in the Immunization and Health Screening Requirements category.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

School attendance/parental involvement: Included in Agreement

(ca_sainc)

Description

Indicates whether or not school attendance and/or parental involvement provisions are included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

School attendance/parental involvement: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_sareq)

Description

Indicates whether or not school attendance and parental involvement are required in the state. Details regarding school requirements for parents and children are found in the School Policies for Dependent Children and Minor Parents Activities Requirements and Bonuses categories.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Parenting classes/family skills training: Included in Agreement

(ca_ptinc)

Description

Indicates whether or not parenting classes and/or family skills training sessions are included in the contract/agreement for at least some of the state's recipients.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Parenting classes/family skills training: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_ptreq)

Description

Indicates whether or not parenting classes and/or family skills training sessions are required in the state. Details on this policy are captured in the corresponding notes variable.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?

See notes above the table for details regarding when each option should be used.

Under AFDC

No

Other requirements: Included in Agreement

(ca_othin)

Description

Indicates whether or not other requirements (than those specifically listed) are included in the agreement.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No
  • ?, if contents of agreement are open-ended.
  • n.a., if state does not have an agreement

Notes

A description of these additional requirements should be coded in the corresponding notes variable, when this variable is coded Yes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Other requirements: Required, whether or not included in agreement

(ca_othrq)

Description

Indicates whether or not the other requirements referred to in "Other requirements: Included in Agreement" and detailed in the corresponding notes variable are required in the state. Details on this policy are captured in the corresponding notes variable.

Alternatives:

  • Yes, if other requirements are included in the contract.
  • No, if no other requirements are included in the contract.
  • n.a., if state does not have any additional requirements included in the agreement

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding Contracts and Agreements.

Countable Income

Description:

This category examines the kinds of income that are counted in determining eligibility and benefits. Specifically, it covers the treatment of interest income, dividend income, EITC income, lump sum income and casual/inconsequential income.

Some income has historically been excluded when determining eligibility and benefits. It is assumed that these types of income are excluded unless mentioned in the "Additional notes" section.

Historically excluded income:

Energy Assistance Payments

Bona fide Loans

Education Loans

Agent Orange Payments

Radiation Payments

Payments to Native Americans

Foster Care Payments

Relocation Assistance

Disaster Relief Payments

Work Study

Overlap Issues:

  • If state counts EITC or lump sum as assets, not income in month it is received, treatment of EITC and lump sum should still be coded in this category. However, the treatment of this income should be clearly explained in variable field and its corresponding notes field.
  • Disregards from earned income are captured in the Earned Income Disregard category.
  • Treatment of child support income is described in the Child Support category.
  • Deeming of income from persons outside the assistance unit is covered in the Deemed Income category.
  • Treatment of children's income is outlined in the Income and Assets of Children category

Special Issues:

  • Because these are general rules, the Unit Type variable is generally be coded as "all."

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Treatment of interest income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_inter

Description

Describes the treatment of interest income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Fully counted
  • Excluded
  • Excluded for a specified period of time
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

Fully Counted

Treatment of dividend income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_divnd

Description

Describes the treatment of dividend income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Fully counted
  • Excluded
  • Excluded for a specified period of time
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

Fully Counted

Treatment of EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit) when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_eitcr

Description

Describes the treatment of EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit) when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Counted as earned income in month received
  • For all earners, counted as if received monthly, regardless of whether credit is actually received
  • Excluded
  • Excluded for a specified period of time
  • Counted in gross income test, disregarded when determining benefit level
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

1/79-9/81

  • EITC treated as earned income when received

10/81-9/84

  • Counted as if received monthly, regardless of whether it is actually received

10/84-9/89

  • EITC treated as earned income when received, whether monthly or as refund at end of year

10/89-12/90

  • Counted in gross income used to determine eligibility
  • Disregarded in determining benefit level (excluded as earned income)

1/91- TANF

  • Excluded in all income-based tests

Types of lump sum income receiving special treatment when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_lstyp

Description

Indicates the types of lump sum income receiving special treatment when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • All, if manual refers to lump sum as a category by itself and does not provide a list or definition of lump sum
  • Types mentioned for a given state are listed

Under AFDC

All

Treatment of lump sum income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_lmpsm

Description

Describes the treatment of lump sum income when determining an assistance unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Counted as unearned income in month received
  • Lump sum is divided by unit's need standard to determine the number of months for which eligibility is lost
  • Excluded
  • Excluded a specified period of time
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

Pre-OBRA 1981

Lump sum counted as unearned income in month received. If lump sum not spent in first month, treated as assets in following month(s).

Post-OBRA 1981

Lump sum divided by assistance unit's need standard to determine the number of months for which eligibility was lost.

Maximum number of lost months of eligibility due to lump sum income.

ci_lslos

Description

Indicates the maximum number of lost months of eligibility due to lump sum income.

Alternatives:

  • One month
  • Lump sum divided by unit's need standard
  • n.a.
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

Pre-OBRA 1981

Lump sum counted as unearned income in month received. If lump sum not spent in first month, treated as assets in following month(s).

Post-OBRA 1981

Lump sum divided by assistance unit's need standard to determine the number of months for which eligibility was lost.

Treatment of casual or inconsequential income when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ci_casin

Description

Describes the treatment of casual or inconsequential income when determining an assistance unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Fully counted
  • $30 per person per quarter is excluded
  • $10 per person per month is excluded
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

$30 per person per quarter is excluded, for a majority of the states.

Definition of quarter when determining disregard for casual or inconsequential income.

ci_defqt

Description

Describes the definition of quarter when determining disregard for casual or inconsequential income.

Alternatives:

  • Calendar quarter
  • 3 consecutive months
  • 3 month period beginning with date of receipt
  • Current and 2 previous months
  • n.a.
  • State-specific descriptions (specified in record)

Under AFDC

Calendar quarter, for a majority of the states.

Other unearned income excluded

ci_exoth

Description

Describes the treatment of other types of unearned income.

Notes

The exclusion of disability insurance should be included in this variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes:

ci_other

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding countable income.

 

Deemed Income

Description:

In general, only the income of assistance unit members is used to determine the unit's eligibility and benefit. But under certain circumstances, some income from persons outside of the assistance unit is "deemed" available to the unit (regardless of whether or not it is in fact available). This "deemed" income is added to the unit's own income when determining eligibility and benefits.

This category is divided into three sub-sections by types of people outside the unit:

  1. stepparents who live in the household but outside the unit;
  2. grandparents (parents of minor parents) who live in the household but outside the unit;
  3. grandparents (parents of minor parents) who live outside the household of the minor parent.

Each sub-section starts with a general variable indicating whether income is deemed from that kind of person. This variable is always coded. If the answer for a particular sub-section is "no" or "not applicable," then the remainder of the sub-section is coded n.a.

After the initial variable in each sub-section, there are several variables that deal with "allocation." States recognize that stepparents and grandparents need a certain portion of their income to take care of themselves and/or other dependents. The portion of the stepparent's or grandparent's income that is set aside (to theoretically provide for the stepparent or grandparent's needs) is referred to as an allocation or the allocated amount. This amount is subtracted from their total income, and the remainder is deemed available to the assistance unit.

The three step-wise allocations are as follows:

  • Initial allocation of earned income
  • Second allocation equal to W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z ("Non-unit people" refers to individuals not included in the assistance unit)
  • Other allocation rules

Allocations are additive; therefore, the total allocation equals the sum of amounts allocated according to any of the rules listed. If allocations are not additive (in cases where the state allocates the larger of two amounts), then the specific allocation rules are described in the notes sections.

Overlap Issues:

  • If financial support from people outside the unit is counted only when it is actually provided, then that policy is not deeming and the policy is captured in the Countable Income category rather than in the Deemed Income category.
  • Disregard ED#1 is sometimes referred to in this category's variables. Details on this disregard are captured in the Earned Income Disregards category.
  • Definitions of State Dollar Amounts #1-3 are contained in the Dollar Amount category.

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Allocation of Income to Stepparent, Remainder Deemed:

If income from a stepparent outside the unit is deemed to persons within the unit, to whom is the income deemed?

di_spwho

Description

Describes to whom a step-parent's income is deemed, if at all.

Alternatives:

  • Deemed to spouse and children
  • Deemed to spouse only
  • Deemed to stepchild(ren) only
  • Not applicable (stepparent is always in the unit)
  • Not deemed to unit

Under AFDC

Since federal legislation in the early 1980s, "deemed to spouse and children"; prior to that, "deemed to spouse only."

Initial Allocation:

Stepparents: Allocation of earned income (earned income disregards applied)

di_spal1

Description

Describes the initial allocation of a stepparent's income (income stepparents can keep).

Alternatives:

  • None
  • Disregard ED#1 only
  • Same as for recipients
  • Disregard ED#1 and child care
  • Other appropriate alternatives including codes from Earned Income Disregard category

Under AFDC

Under standard AFDC rules, only the work expense deduction (ED#1) was allowed, not any other earnings-related disregards that were available to recipients.

Second Allocation:

Stepparents: Allocation equal to W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum, Z

W: di_spa2w

X: di_spa2x

Y: di_spa2y

Z: di_spa2z

W

Description

Captures the percent value of W in the second allocation (income stepparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

X

Description

Captures the value of X in the second allocation (income stepparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • Total income after initial allocation
  • Earned income after initial allocation
  • Federal Poverty Guideline
  • State Dollar Amount #1
  • State Dollar Amount #2
  • State Dollar Amount #3
  • Other (descriptions provided in record)

Y

Description

Captures the value of Y in the next allocation (income stepparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • Stepparent only
  • Dependent children outside the unit
  • Stepparent plus dependent children outside the unit
  • n.a.

Z

Description

Captures the value of Z in the next allocation (income stepparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • No maximum
  • Total remaining income
  • Remaining earned income
  • Unearned income

Under AFDC

Under standard AFDC rules, 100% (W) of the need standard (X) for the stepparent and any dependents outside the unit (Y) was allocated, up to stepparent's total remaining income, (Z). The remaining income was deemed to the assistance unit.

Stepparents: Other allocation rules

di_spoth

Description

Describes any additional allocation of a stepparent's income (income stepparents can keep).

Allocation of Income to Grandparent in Household, Remainder Deemed:

Is income deemed from the parent(s) of a minor parent when they are all in the same household?

di_ghdmd

Description

Captures whether or not the income of grandparents in the household is deemed.

Beginning in 2001:

Describes to whom a grandparent's income is deemed, if at all.

Alternatives:

  • No Deeming
  • Deemed to the minor and her child
  • Deemed to the minor only
  • The grandparent must be included in the unit

Under AFDC

Federal legislation required this type of deeming beginning in the mid-1980s. Some waivers stopped deeming from grandparents or modified the allocations.

Initial Allocation:

Grandparents in household: Allocation of earned income (earned income disregards applied)

di_ghal1

Description

Describes the initial allocation applicable to grandparents in the household (the portion of the grandparent's income they are allowed to keep/the portion of the income not deemed).

Alternatives:

  • None
  • Disregard ED#1 only
  • Same as for recipients
  • Disregard ED#1 and child care
  • Other appropriate alternatives including codes from Earned Income Disregard category

Under AFDC

Under standard AFDC rules, only the work expense deduction (ED#1) was allowed, not any other earnings-related disregards that were available to recipients.

Second Allocation:

Grandparents in household: Allocation equal to W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum Z

W: di_gha2w

X: di_gha2x

Y: di_gha2y

Z: di_gha2z

W

Description

Captures the percent value of W in the second allocation applicable to grandparents in the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

X

Description

Captures the value of X in the second allocation applicable to grandparents in the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • Total income after initial allocation
  • Earned income after initial allocation
  • Federal Poverty Guideline
  • State Dollar Amount #1
  • State Dollar Amount #2
  • State Dollar Amount #3
  • Other (descriptions provided in record)

Y

Description

Captures the value of Y in the second allocation applicable to grandparents in the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • Grandparent only
  • Dependent children outside the unit
  • Grandparent plus dependent children outside the unit
  • n.a.

Z

Description

Captures the value of Z in the second allocation applicable to grandparents in the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • No maximum
  • Total remaining income
  • Remaining earned income
  • Unearned income

Under AFDC

Under standard AFDC rules, 100% (W) of the need standard (X) for the grandparent and any dependents outside the unit (Y) was allocated, up to grandparent's total remaining income (Z). The remaining income was deemed to the assistance unit.

Grandparents in household: Other allocation rules

di_ghoth

Description

Describes any additional allocations applicable to grandparents in the household (income grandparents can keep).

Allocation of Income to Grandparent outside the Household, Remainder Deemed:

Is income deemed from the parent(s) of a minor parent when they are not in the same household?

di_godmd

Description

Captures whether or not the income of grandparents outside the household is deemed.

Beginning in 2001:

Describes to whom a grandparent's income is deemed, if at all.

Alternatives:

  • No Deeming
  • Deemed to the minor and her child
  • Deemed to the minor only

The grandparent must be included in the unit

Under AFDC

This type of deeming was never required, but was included in at least one waiver.

Initial Allocation:

Grandparents not in household: Allocation of earned income (earned income disregards applied)

di_goal1

Description

Describes the initial allocation applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep).

Alternatives:

  • None
  • Disregard ED#1 only
  • Same as for recipients
  • Disregard ED#1 and child care
  • Other appropriate alternatives including codes from Earned Income Disregard category

Under AFDC

This type of deeming was never required, but was included in at least one waiver.

Second Allocation:

Grandparents not in household: Allocation equal to W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum Z

W: di_goa2w

X: di_goa2x

Y: di_goa2y

Z: di_goa2z

W

Description

Captures the percent value of W in the second allocation applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

X

Description

Captures the value of X in the second allocation applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • Total income after initial allocation
  • Earned income after initial allocation
  • Federal Poverty Guideline
  • State Dollar Amount #1
  • State Dollar Amount #2
  • State Dollar Amount #3
  • Other (descriptions provided in record)

Y

Description

Captures the value of Y in the second allocation applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum amount, Z.

Alternatives:

  • Grandparent only
  • Dependent children outside the unit
  • Grandparent plus dependent children outside the unit
  • n.a.

Z

Description

Captures the value of Z in the second allocation applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y non-unit people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • No maximum
  • Total remaining income
  • Remaining earned income
  • Unearned income

Under AFDC

This type of deeming was never required, but was included in at least one waiver.

Grandparents not in household: Other allocation rules

di_gooth

Description

Describes any additional allocations applicable to grandparents outside the household (income grandparents can keep).

Additional Notes:

di_other

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding deeming income from stepparents and grandparents.

 

Diversion

Description:

Diversion programs are types of assistance or activities requirements provided to divert eligible applicants or recipients from ongoing AFDC/TANF receipt. These programs may be either "Formal" diversion or "Informal" Diversion.

Formal Diversion:

Formal programs include: 1) a one-time cash payment; 2) support services such as child care or medical care; or 3) a combination of the two. Only those programs that provide a cash payment or support services are identified as formal diversion programs in this database. For states that provide a cash payment, the payment is generally more than the assistance unit would have received as a monthly AFDC benefit. Often, the cash payment is a multiple of a monthly cash AFDC/TANF benefit and the assistance unit that receives the diversion payment is ineligible for additional payments and/or ongoing AFDC/TANF benefits for a specified length of time. For states that do not provide a cash benefit, only programs that provide support services equal to or in excess of those available to AFDC/TANF recipients are considered diversion programs. Diversion programs may be mandatory or voluntary. Note that a formal diversion program may include a job search requirement (below).

Informal Diversion:

In addition to formal diversion programs, states may also attempt to divert applicants from AFDC/TANF benefits by requiring the applicant to participate in job search activities prior to approving his or her application. States may require applicants to participate in structured work programs or search for work independently. These activities may take place prior to the submission of an application or during the application processing period. Support services such as child care or transportation assistance may also be made available to applicants during the job search period.

Overlap Issues:

  • Whether or not a diversion payment counts toward an assistance unit's time limit is contained in this category, not the Time Limits category.
  • Transitional services for an assistance unit that loses benefits due to increased earnings or an expired time limit are not considered diversion programs. These types of programs are covered in the Transitional Benefit category.

Special Issues:

  • Some diversion programs are available to both applicants and recipients; others are available only to applicants. If applicants and recipients are treated differently with respect to diversion programs, then each group receives its own record.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

State will provide assistance in the form of a one-time cash payment, support services, or both to an applicant/recipient in order to divert the applicant/recipient from ongoing AFDC/TANF receipt

dv_exist

Description

Indicates whether or not a diversion program exists.

Under AFDC

No diversion programs.

Is diversion assistance in the form of one-time cash payment, support services, or both?

dv_types

Description

Describes the form in which diversion assistance is available, whether a one-time cash payment, support services or both.

Alternatives:

  • Cash payment
  • Support services
  • Cash payment and support services
  • n.a.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If diversion benefit amount is multiple of monthly AFDC/TANF benefit, what is the maximum number of months of AFDC/TANF benefit provided as diversion benefit?

dv_bmult

Description

Indicates the maximum number of months of benefits provided as a diversion payment, if the diversion benefit amount is a multiple of the monthly assistance benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Number of months
  • n.a., if benefit is not a multiple of the monthly benefit

Notes

Often the maximum cash payment is a multiple of the maximum AFDC/TANF benefit. For instance, in Montana, a recipient receiving a diversion benefit can get up to three times the monthly maximum AFDC/TANF benefit. Montana would thus be coded "3" for this variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If diversion benefit amount is not a multiple of monthly AFDC/TANF amount, what is it?

dv_bnoth

Description

Describes the maximum benefit in text if the diversion payment is not a multiple of the maximum monthly AFDC/TANF benefit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is diversion payment amount computed differently then TANF payment?

dv_$comp

Description

Describes any details regarding how the diversion payment is calculated. Information includes whether the state treats earnings differently or uses different disregards in calculating the benefit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Are any programs such as TMA, subsidized child care (TCC) or JOBS services provided?

dv_spsvc

Description

Captures any available information on the provision of support services, such as medical care, child care or help in securing employment for units participating in a diversion program.

Under AFDC

n.a.

How often can a diversion assistance be made to a particular recipient?

dv_$freq

Description

Describes the time period for which an assistance unit can receive a diversion payment, as well as the time period after which someone who already received a diversion payment can receive another.

Alternatives:

  • Once per lifetime
  • Once per X months
  • Other (descriptions provided)

Under AFDC

n.a.

Period of time after receiving diversion assistance that a recipient is ineligible for AFDC/TANF

dv_tmein

Description

Describes the length of time an assistance unit must wait before they can receive ongoing AFDC/TANF benefits (not another diversion payment). Diversion payments are designed to steer persons away from ongoing assistance by providing a large benefit. Therefore, those who want to return to AFDC/TANF generally have to wait a specified length of time before they can begin receiving monthly assistance.

Notes

Often this waiting period is related to the number of months of assistance received through a diversion payment. If a state gave a client a diversion payment 3 times the monthly maximum AFDC benefit, then the client probably has to wait three months before they are eligible for AFDC. However, it is often more complicated. For instance, in Montana a client receiving a diversion payment is ineligible for AFDC for two months per month's worth of benefit payment. In Utah, the recipient is immediately eligible. However, any previous diversion payment will be prorated over a three month period and subtracted from any grant(s) for which the family may be eligible. All details are entered into the field.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Does diversion assistance count toward time limit?

dv_tmlmt

Description

Describes whether diversion assistance counts toward time limits and how it is counted.

Under AFDC

n.a.

State requires applicants to participate in job search activities as a condition of eligibility for cash benefits.

Dv_jobsr

Description

Indicates whether or not a job search requirement exists.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Who is required to participate in job search?

dv_whorq

Description

Describes who is required to participate in job search activities

Under AFDC

n.a.

Who is exempt from the job search

dv_whoex

Description

Describes who is exempt from job search activities.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Timing of job search relative to application submission and processing

dv_timsr

Description

Describes the timing of the job search requirement relative to the application process, i.e. prior to submission of the application or during the processing period

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is the job search structured (part of a state work program) or individual-focused (applicant looks for work on his or her own)

dv_srfocs

Description

Describes whether or not the applicant participates in a structured program for job search or makes job contacts independently.

Alternatives:

  • Individual
  • Structured

Under AFDC

n.a.

What is required during the job search period?

dv_whatsr

Description

Describes the parameters of the job search requirement such as the number of contacts required.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Duration of job search

dv_srdur

Description

Describes the length of time during which the applicant engages in job search activities.

Under AFDC

n.a.

What support services are available during the job search?

dv_srsup

Description

Describes any support services available to the applicant during the job search period, such as child care or transportation assistance.

Under AFDC

n.a.

What are the consequences if the applicant is noncompliant with the job search requirement

dv_srcon

Description

Describes the penalties applied if the applicant does not cooperate with job search requirements such as the application is denied or approved with a sanction applied.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

dv_other

Description

Captures additional notes regarding the state's diversion program.

 

Dollar Amounts

Description:

This category captures the dollar amounts used in determining eligibility and benefits for an assistance unit. Under AFDC, these dollar amounts included: the need standard, payment standard and maximum benefit. In addition, this category captures information on special needs amounts added to the basic dollar amounts under special circumstances.

Overlap Issues:

  • These dollar amounts are referred to in the following categories: Benefit Computation, Deemed Income, Diversion and Income Eligibility Tests.

Special Issues:

  • Pay special attention to the additional notes section in this category. The field contains information on specific counties to which the dollar amounts refer or any other important assumptions about the dollar amounts.
  • Beginning in 2001 the database captures amounts for child-only units, single parent units, and two parent units in separate records. Prior to 2001, all dollar amounts were based on the assumption that there was one adult in the unit. In states with different dollar amounts for child-only units, the child-only amount for one child was coded for a family size of one only. For all other family sizes, the amounts were based on one adult and children.

Variables and Notes:

Variables Notes

Name of Dollar Amount #1 through #3

da_name1

da_name2

da_name3

Description

Captures the name the state uses to refer to Dollar Amount #1-3.

Alternatives:

  • Need standard
  • Payment standard
  • Maximum benefit
  • Other name specified by state

Notes

The dollar amount used as the need standard (regardless of the state's name) is coded as Dollar Amount # 1.

The dollar amount used as the payment standard (regardless of the state's name) is coded as Dollar Amount # 2, assuming there is a need standard.

The dollar amount used as the maximum benefit (regardless of the state's name) is coded as Dollar Amount # 3, assuming there is a need and payment standard.

If state no longer has three dollar amounts, the dollar amount used first in the eligibility process is coded as "Dollar Amount #1."

Under AFDC

Dollar Amount #1 = Need Standard

Dollar Amount #2 = Payment Standard

Dollar Amount #3 = Maximum Benefit

Dollar Amount #1 through #3 for each family size, 1 through 12

da_v1f01 da_v2f01 da_v3f01

da_v1f02 da_v2f02 da_v3f02

da_v1f03 da_v2f03 da_v3f03

da_v1f04 da_v2f04 da_v3f04

da_v1f05 da_v2f05 da_v3f05

da_v1f06 da_v2f06 da_v3f06

da_v1f07 da_v2f07 da_v3f07

da_v1f08 da_v2f08 da_v3f08 da_v1f09 da_v2f09 da_v3f09

da_v1f10 da_v2f10 da_v3f10

da_v1f11 da_v2f11 da_v3f11

da_v1f12 da_v2f12 da_v3f12

Description

Value of Dollar Amount #1-3 for each family size (1 through 12).

Under AFDC

Varied from state to state.

Are any special needs amounts added to these dollar amounts under certain circumstances?

da_snadd

Description

Indicates whether or not a state adds to the dollar amounts for assistance units with special needs.

Under AFDC

Varied from state to state.

If yes, description of circumstances and special needs amounts.

da_snamt

Description

Describes the circumstances under which an assistance unit receives special needs amounts, as well as the dollar value of the special needs amount, when applicable.

Under AFDC

Varied from state to state.

Do dollar amounts vary based on whether the unit lives in public or subsidized housing?

da_varph

Description

Indicates whether or not dollar amounts vary if a unit lives in public or subsidized housing.

Under AFDC

Varied from state to state.

How are the dollar amounts different for the units that do not pay the total cost of their housing?

da_amtph

Description

Indicates how the dollar amounts vary for units living in public or subsidized housing if the state uses different dollar amounts for these families.

Under AFDC

Varied from state to state.

Additional Notes:

da_other

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding dollar amounts.

 

Earned Income Disregards

Description:

This category outlines the amounts of earned income an assistance unit may deduct when determining eligibility and benefits. The amounts an assistance unit can deduct are referred to as disregards.

Under AFDC, states were required to disregard a portion of a recipients' earned income when determining eligibility and benefits as a work incentive to clients. The value of a disregard is subtracted from an assistance unit's gross earned income when determining eligibility and benefits. In determining eligibility based on net income, each worker in the unit was allowed to disregard $90 for work expenses plus up to $175 per month for child care for each child age 2 and older (up to $200 for each child under the age of 2). Benefits were calculated using earnings minus a $90 work expense disregard, followed by a disregard of $30 and one-third of remaining earnings. After four months of consecutive earnings, recipients were no longer eligible for the one-third disregard, so the disregard was simply $120 ($90 and $30). After eight additional months of consecutive earnings, recipients were no longer eligible for the $30 disregard, so the disregard was simply $90. In addition, recipients were also allowed to disregard child care expenses up to $175 per month per child ($200 for children under age two). There was no time limit for the child care deduction.

Under waivers, a number of states made changes to this disregard structure, typically increasing the amount of earnings disregarded and eliminating the phase-out of the disregards over time.

PRWORA did not address the issue of earnings disregards specifically, but the creation of TANF gave states the freedom to adopt any disregard structure. The majority of states have implemented new earnings disregards that differ from the standard AFDC disregard.

Overlap Issues:

  • The net income test is referenced in this category when describing when each disregard is applied. More details on this test and others are found in the Income Eligibility Test category.
  • Disregards, by number, ED#1, may be referred to in the Deemed Income category.
  • Special disregards for families affected by family caps are captured in this category, not in the Family Cap category.
  • Net income used in the Benefit Computation category is determined using information in this category, as well as Child Support, Countable Income, Deemed Income, Income and Assets of Children and In Kind Income.
  • This category captures special disregards for earnings placed in savings during the month in which they are received. This type of disregard is different from IDAs which allow individuals to keep a limited amount of savings for restricted purposes and still remain eligible for benefits. IDAs are captured in the Asset Test category.

Special Issues:

  • The form is too long to add any more variables. If state has more than 3 disregards and the same disregards apply to recipients while others apply to applicants, two records exist: one for applicants and one for recipients. If there are more than 3 disregards for all unit types, all disregards that do not fit are coded in the additional notes section. All information coded for the first three disregards is also recorded for the disregards coded in the notes section.

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Earnings disregard (ED) #1

ed_edr#1

Description

Specifies the numeric value of the first income disregard.

(ed_#1$o% describes whether this value is a dollar amount or a percentage)

Under AFDC

90

Earnings disregard #1: Is ED#1 a dollar amount or percent

ed_#1$o%

Description

Indicates whether Earnings Disregard #1 is a flat dollar disregard or a percent disregard.

Under AFDC

Dollars

Earnings disregard #1: Computations for which earnings disregard #1 is used

ed_#1use

Description

Describes when Earnings Disregard #1 is used.

Alternatives:

  • Net income test
  • Net earnings test
  • Benefit computation
  • Net income test and benefit computation

Notes

A state is only considered to have a net income test if the disregards or dollar amounts for this test differ from those used in determining a unit's benefit.

Under AFDC

Net income test and benefit computation.

Earnings disregard #1: time period for which earnings disregard #1 is used

ed_#1tme

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit qualifies for Earnings Disregard #1.

Alternatives:

  • All months
  • First 4 consecutive months of earnings
  • First 12 consecutive months of earnings
  • Some other time scheme (described in record)

Under AFDC

All months

Earnings disregard #1: range of earnings that earnings disregard #1 applies to

ed_#1rge

Description

Indicates range of dollar values to which Earnings Disregard #1 applies.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Other (description provided)

Notes

For example, under NY CAP waiver there was a disregard of 90% for the earnings below poverty and a disregard of 33% for earnings above poverty, so the 90% disregard is indicated as "0-poverty level.".

Under AFDC

All

Earnings disregard (ED) #2

ed_edr#2

Description

Specifies the numeric value of the first income disregard.

(ed_#2$o% describes whether this value is a dollar amount or a percentage)

Under AFDC

30

Earnings disregard #2: Is ED#2 a dollar amount or percent

ed_#2$o%

Description

Indicates whether Earnings Disregard #2 is a flat dollar disregard or a percent disregard.

Under AFDC

Dollars

Earnings disregard #2: Computations for which earnings disregard #2 is used

ed_#2use

Description

Describes when Earnings Disregard #2 is used.

Alternatives:

  • Net income test
  • Net earnings test
  • Benefit computation
  • Net income test and benefit computation

Notes

A state is only considered to have a net income test if the disregards or dollar amounts for this test differ from those used in determining a unit's benefit.

Under AFDC

Benefit computation.

Earnings disregard #2: time period for which earnings disregard #2 is used

ed_#2tme

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit qualifies for Earnings Disregard #2.

Alternatives:

  • All months
  • First 4 consecutive months of earnings
  • First 12 consecutive months of earnings
  • Some other time scheme (described in record)

Under AFDC

First 12 consecutive months of earnings

Earnings disregard #2: range of earnings that earnings disregard #2 applies to

ed_#2rge

Description

Indicates range of dollar values to which Earnings Disregard #2 applies.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Other (description provided)

Notes

For example, under NY CAP waiver there was a disregard of 90% for the earnings below poverty and a disregard of 33% for earnings above poverty, so the 90% disregard is indicated as "0-poverty level.".

Under AFDC

All

Earnings disregard (ED) #3

ed_edr#3

Description

Specifies the numeric value of the first income disregard.

(ed_#3$o% describes whether this value is a dollar amount or a percentage)

Under AFDC

33.3

Earnings disregard #3: Is ED#3 a dollar amount or percent

ed_#3$o%

Description

Indicates whether Earnings Disregard #3 is a flat dollar disregard or a percent disregard.

Under AFDC

Percent

Earnings disregard #3: Computations for which earnings disregard #3 is used

ed_#3use

Description

Describes when Earnings Disregard #3 is used.

Alternatives:

  • Net income test
  • Net earnings test
  • Benefit computation
  • Net income test and benefit computation

Notes

A state is only considered to have a net income test if the disregards or dollar amounts for this test differ from those used in determining a unit's benefit.

Under AFDC

Benefit computation.

Earnings disregard #3: time period for which earnings disregard #3 is used

ed_#3tme

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit qualifies for Earnings Disregard #3.

Alternatives:

  • All months
  • First 4 consecutive months of earnings
  • First 12 consecutive months of earnings
  • Some other time scheme (described in record)

Under AFDC

First 4 consecutive months of earnings

Earnings disregard #3: range of earnings that earnings disregard #3 applies to

ed_#3rge

Description

Indicates range of dollar values to which Earnings Disregard #3 applies.

Alternatives:

  • All
  • Other (description provided)

Notes

For example, under NY CAP waiver there was a disregard of 90% for the earnings below poverty and a disregard of 33% for earnings above poverty, so the 90% disregard is indicated as "0-poverty level.".

Under AFDC

All

Can units with child care expenses disregard a portion of those actual expenses?

ed_ccare

Description

Describes whether or not an assistance unit can disregard a portion of its actual child care expenses.

Under AFDC

Yes

Child care disregard: Age limit for lower age range

ed_ccage

Description

If the maximum allowable child care disregard varies by the child's age, this variable indicates the age cutoff between the two disregard amounts.

Under AFDC

2

Child care disregard: Maximum deduction allowed, for lower age range

ed_ccmxl

Description

Describes the maximum deduction allowed for young children if deduction varies by age. If deduction does not vary by age, the variable describes the maximum deduction for all children.

Under AFDC

200

Child care disregard: Maximum deduction allowed, for higher age range

ed_ccmxh

Description

Describes the maximum deduction allowed for the older children if deduction varies by the child's age.

Under AFDC

175

Child care disregard: Computations for which this disregard is used

ed_ccuse

Description

Describes when the child care disregard is used.

Alternatives:

  • Net income test
  • Net earnings test
  • Benefit computation
  • Net income test and benefit computation

Under AFDC

Net income test and benefit computation.

Child care disregard: Time period for which this disregard is used

ed_cctme

Description

Describes how long an assistance unit qualifies for a child care disregard.

Under AFDC

All months

Child care disregard: Ordering of child care disregard with respect to other disregards

ed_ccord

Description

Describes how the child care disregard fits into the sequence of all other disregards.

Under AFDC

Disregard earnings remaining after earnings disregards 1,2, and 3.

Child care disregard: Information on lower child care disregards for part-time workers

ed_ccptm

Description

Describes the child care disregard policy with respect to part-time workers, if applicable.

Under AFDC

Varied by state.

Child care disregard: Other information on child care disregard

ed_ccoth

Description

Captures any other useful information about the child care disregard.

Under AFDC

Varied by state.

Is there a special earnings disregard for earnings put into savings?

ed_svngs

Description

Captures whether a state disregards earnings that are placed directly into savings.

Notes

This variable overlaps with IDA accounts to some degree. However, this variable refers to earnings received in the current month, while IDAs disregard savings from previous months.

Under AFDC

No

Description of special earnings disregard for earnings put into savings

ed_svdes

Description

Describes special disregard for earnings put into savings in month received.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is there a special earnings disregard for units affected by the family cap?

ed_fmcap

Description

Indicates whether or not a state has a special earnings disregard for assistance units affected by a family cap.

Notes

Some states have allowed for additional earned income disregards equal to the amount the family would have received for the additional child. This in effect allows the family to work more to support this child but not receive assistance for this child from the state.

Under AFDC

No

Description of special earnings disregard for units affected by a family cap

ed_fcdes

Description

Describes the earnings disregard for families affected by a family cap.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is there a special earnings disregard for units affected by the time limit?

ed_tmlmt

Description

Captures whether or not a state has a special earnings disregard for those affected by a time limit.

Under AFDC

No

Description of special earnings disregard for units affected by a time-related benefit reduction

ed_tldes

Description

Describes the earnings disregard for families affected by a time limit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is there a special earnings disregard for earnings from certain types of jobs?

ed_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding earned income disregards.

 

Eligibility by Number/Type of Parents

Description:

Program eligibility may be restricted to certain types of families, as defined by the number or type of parents/caretakers. Under AFDC, the federal government established the types of families that were covered under AFDC, with one exception. Prior to 1988, states could choose whether or not to cover two-parent families in which neither parent was disabled. In 1988, the Family Support Act was passed requiring all states to provide assistance to two-parent families. However, states that previously did not provide benefits to two-parent families could choose to restrict assistance to a limited number of months (at least six out of twelve). Under TANF, states have authority to define the types of families that are potentially eligible for benefits.

Overlap Issues:

  • Eligibility rules for units headed by minor parents are covered in the Eligibility of Units Headed by Minor Parents.
  • Eligibility rules for pregnant women who do not already have children are covered in the Eligibility of Pregnant Women.
  • Eligibility of specific individuals is covered in the Eligibility of Individual Family Members.

Special Issues:

  • The Unit Type variable is not applicable for this category because the category captures whether or not different unit types are eligible. Therefore, Unit Type is always coded "All."

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

May two-parent families, non-disabled units ever receive benefits from this program?

en_twopt

Description

Describes whether two-parent, non-disabled units are eligible.

Under AFDC

Prior to the implementation of the Family Support Act of 1988, some states did not provide AFDC benefits to two-parent non-disabled families. The FSA required all states to provide at least limited benefits to these families.

May children living with parent(s) not eligible for cash benefits receive benefits from this program?

en_chprt

Description

Describes whether child-only units living with ineligible parents are eligible.

Under AFDC

In these types of families, the children were potentially eligible for benefits as a "child-only" case.

May children living with non-parent(s) relatives not eligible for cash benefits ever receive benefits from this program?

en_chrel

Description

Describes whether child-only units living with ineligible non-parent relatives are eligible.

Under AFDC

In these types of families, the children were potentially eligible for benefits as a "child-only" case.

Does the state have a formalized kinship care program for children living with non-parent relatives?

Description:

Describes whether the state has a formalized kinship care program.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If the state does have a kinship care program, describe any differences in this program from the standard TANF program.

Description:

Describes the state's formalized kinship care program.

Under AFDC

n.a.

May children living with non-relative caretakers ever receive benefits from this program?

en_choth

Description

Describes whether child living with non-relative caregivers are eligible.

Under AFDC

Children living with caretakers who were non-relatives were not eligible for benefits. (In some states, this type of family has been covered by the state's "general assistance" program instead.)

Additional Notes

en_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the eligibility of different types of families.

 

Eligibility of Individual Family Members

Description:

This category describes which family members are part of the assistance unit, given that the unit as a whole is potentially eligible for benefits.

Overlap Issues:

  • Inclusion of Non-Citizens in the Unit covers the eligibility of family members based on their immigration and citizenship status.
  • Eligibility by Number/Type of Parents and Eligibility of Units Headed by Minor Parents include the rules for whether a unit as a whole is potentially eligible for benefits.

Special Issues:

  • The Unit Type key variable is not applicable for this category, and will always be coded "all."

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Inclusion in the unit of any natural/adoptive parents who are in the household

ei_prent

Description

Indicates whether it is mandatory or optional to include natural/adoptive parents living in the household as members of the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Mandatory
  • Optional (details specified in the notes for this variable)

Under AFDC

Since the early 1980s, mandatory under federal rules.

Inclusion in the unit of any dependent children who are in the household

ei_depch

Description

Indicates whether it is mandatory or optional to include all dependent children living in the household as members of the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Mandatory
  • Optional (details specified in the notes for this variable)

Under AFDC

Since the early 1980s, mandatory under federal rules.

Under waivers:

At least one state's waiver allowed some siblings to remain outside the unit, presumably if their income would reduce the family's benefit.

Person less than this age is considered a child, without restriction

ei_chage

Description

Age under which an individual is considered a child without restrictions.

Under AFDC

Age 18

Person less than this age is considered a child under certain conditions

ei_chres

Description

Age under which an individual is considered a child with restrictions, described in ei_chcon.

Under AFDC

States had the option to consider some 18 year-old as children.

The certain conditions for person to be considered a child

ei_chcon

Description

Conditions that children under the age in ei_chres must meet in order to be eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Full-time student in secondary or votech school
  • Full or part-time student
  • Full-time student in secondary school and expects to graduate before turning 19
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

18 year-olds could only be considered children if full-time students in secondary or vo/tech schools

Inclusion in the unit of a stepparent

ei_stprt

Description

Indicates whether inclusion of stepparent in the unit is mandatory, optional or prohibited.

Alternatives:

  • Mandatory
  • Optional (details specified in the notes for this variable)
  • Prohibited

Under AFDC

Some states have laws of general applicability, requiring the inclusion of stepparents in the unit. For the remaining states, the inclusion of stepparents was optional.

Are SSI recipients eligible?

ei_onssi

Description

Indicates whether SSI recipients are eligible.

Under AFDC

No

Are persons on strike eligible?

ei_strke

Description

Indicates whether persons on strike are eligible.

Under AFDC

Since the early 1980s, no.

Are persons convicted of a drug felony eligible?

ei_drgfl

Description

Indicates whether persons convicted of a drug felony are eligible.

Under AFDC

Yes

Additional Notes

ei_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the eligibility of individual family members.

 

Eligibility of Pregnant Women

Description:

Under AFDC, states had the option of providing assistance to pregnant women. If a state chose to provide benefits, pregnant women with no other children received assistance based on the state's need standard for one adult or one adult and one child. Receipt of assistance was conditional on the fact that the pregnant woman would be eligible if the child were born and living with her. This category reports whether pregnant women are eligible and if so, month of the pregnancy in which eligibility begins.

Overlap Issues:

  • None

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Is a pregnant women with no other children eligible for assistance?

ep_asteg

Description

Indicates whether pregnant women are ever eligible in the state and whether only the mother's eligible or whether the mother and her unborn child are eligible.

Alternatives:

  • No
  • Yes, mother only
  • Yes, mother and unborn

Notes

If a state does not mention any provisions for pregnant women, it is assumed that pregnant women are not eligible for benefits.

Under AFDC

Yes, mother only, for a majority of states

Eligibility of pregnant women with no other children begins in what month?

ep_month

Description

For states that provide assistance to pregnant women, indicates the month or pregnancy during which eligibility begins for a pregnant woman with no other children.

Alternatives:

  • Month designated by the state
  • n.a.

Notes

One of North Dakota's waivers, the Early Intervention Program, allowed benefits to begin in month 5 from April, 1995 to July, 1997.

Under AFDC

6, for a majority of states

Additional Notes

ep_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the eligibility of pregnant women.

 

Eligibility of Units Headed by Minor Parents

Description:

This category covers eligibility rules for units headed by minor parents. This information includes the youngest age a minor parent can receive benefits as a head of an assistance unit, the oldest age a residency requirement is imposed, the acceptable living arrangements that meet the residency requirement and whether a minor parent who was receiving benefits as a child member of a unit remains in that unit after her child is born.

Overlap Issues:

  • Eligibility rules specific to minor parents are included in this category rather than in the more general category for eligibility rules by number/type of parents or caretakers.

Special Issues:

  • The Unit Type key variable in the header record are coded as "all," rather than "minor parents," for consistency with the key variable coding of other categories dealing with demographic eligibility rules.

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

State's definition of minor parent

Description

Describes the state's definition of who qualifies as a minor parent.

Under AFDC

An unmarried individual under the age of 18.

Youngest age at which an unmarried parent can receive benefits as head of his/her own unit

em_agehd

Description

Indicates the minimum age at which an unmarried parent can receive benefits as the head of an assistance unit.

Alternatives:

  • Designated age, if there is a minimum
  • No minimum, if there is no minimum

Under AFDC

There was no minimum specified in federal regulations. States might have had minimums in practice, but none were explicitly reported in the State Plans.

Oldest age at which residency requirements are imposed on unmarried parents

em_rdage

Description

Describes the oldest age at which residency requirements are imposed on unmarried parents.

Alternatives:

  • Designated age, if there is a residency requirement
  • n.a., if there are not residency requirements

Under AFDC

Since the early 1990s, states have had the option to impose residency rules.

If residency requirements are imposed, allowable settings = parent or legal guardian

em_rdprt

Description

Indicates whether living with a parent or legal guardian fulfills the minor parent's residency requirement.

Under AFDC

States had the option of imposing this requirement without a waiver.

If residency requirements are imposed, allowable settings = other adult relative

em_rdrel

Description

Indicates whether living with an adult relative other than a parent fulfills the minor parent's residency requirement.

Under AFDC

States had the option of imposing this requirement without a waiver.

If residency requirements are imposed, allowable settings = other adult- supervised home (such as maternity home)

em_rdhme

Description

Indicates whether living in an adult supervised home fulfills the minor parent's residency requirement.

Under AFDC

States had the option of imposing this requirement without a waiver.

If residency requirements are imposed, allowable settings =

Conservator or legal custodian

em_rdcvt

Description

Indicates whether living with a conservator or legal custodian fulfills the minor parent's residency requirement.

Under AFDC

No

Additional Notes

em_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the eligibility of assistance units headed by minor parents.

 

 

Eligibility of Two-Parent Families

Description:

This category captures employment related eligibility criteria for two-parent, non-disabled families. These criteria include rules regarding employment status and labor force attachment.

Under AFDC, two-parent, non-disabled families were only potentially eligible for the AFDC-UP program. In order to qualify for the program, a family's principal earner had to be unemployed or severely underemployed, unemployed for a minimum length of time, and previously attached to the labor force. Specifically, the rules were:

100 Hour Rule:

This rule restricted AFDC-UP eligibility to families in which the principal wage earner was employed for less than 100 hours per month (or unemployed).

Work History Requirement:

This rule restricted AFDC-UP eligibility to families that demonstrated labor force attachment by requiring that families show proof of wages in at least 6 of the last 13 quarters ending within a year before applying for AFDC.

30 Day Waiting Period:

This rule restricted AFDC-UP eligibility to families in which the principal wage earner had been unemployed for at least 30 days.

Under waivers, a number of states eliminated or modified these rules.

Under TANF, states have complete discretion in setting eligibility rules. They choose whether or not to impose special employment-related rules on two-parent families.

Overlap Issues:

  • This category overlaps with the Eligibility by Number/Type of Parents category. Whether or not a two-parent, non-disabled family is eligible is coded in the Eligibility by Number/Type of Parents category. If two-parent, non-disabled families are not eligible, then the variables in this category do not apply and are coded n.a.

Special Issues:

  • This category only applies to two-parent, non-disabled families and the Unit Type variable should always be coded "All".

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Limit on hours worked in a month in order for an applicant to be eligible? (hours worked must be < this)

tp_maxap

Description

Indicates the maximum number of hours a principal earner in a two-parent, non-disabled applicant unit can work and still be eligible for benefits. (The 100 hour rule for applicants).

Alternatives:

  • 100
  • No limit, for states that have eliminated this rule.
  • n.a., if two-parent, non-disabled units are not eligible for benefits
  • Other (appropriate number of hours indicated)

Under AFDC

100

Limit on hours worked in a month in order for a recipient to be eligible? (hours worked must be < this)

tp_maxrc

Description

Indicates the maximum number of hours a principal earner in a two-parent, non-disabled recipient unit can work and still be eligible for benefits. (The 100 hour rule for recipients).

Alternatives:

  • 100
  • No limit, for states that have eliminated this rule.
  • n.a., if two-parent, non-disabled units are not eligible for benefits
  • Other (appropriate number of hours indicated)

Under AFDC

100

Work history test applied to determine an applicant's initial eligibility?

tp_wkhis

Description

Captures the required proof of labor force attachment for the principal earner in a two-parent, non-disabled applicant unit in order to be eligible for benefits (The work history rule).

Alternatives:

  • 6 out of 13 quarters
  • No limit, for states that have eliminated this rule.
  • n.a., if two-parent, non-disabled units are not eligible for benefits
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

Units are required to show proof of wages during 6 out of 13 quarters ending within a year.

Waiting period before a newly-unemployed family can receive benefits? (in days)

tp_bwait

Description

Length of time the principal earner of a two-parent, non-disabled family must be unemployed in order to receive benefits. (The 30 day waiting period rule).

Alternatives:

  • 30
  • 0, for states that have eliminated this rule.
  • n.a., if two-parent, non-disabled units are not eligible for benefits
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

30

Additional Notes:

tp_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the eligibility of two-parent families.

 

Family Caps

Description:

A family cap limits the increase in benefits a recipient unit can receive after the birth of another child. Family caps were not a standard provision in AFDC programs. Only under waiver authority were states able to implement a family cap. State policies varied in the percentage by which the incremental benefit is reduced and how long a family must be on AFDC to be affected by the family cap.

Overlap Issues:

  • Information regarding special earned income disregards for families affected by family caps is located in the Earned Income Disregards category.
  • This category indicates whether or not a capped child's income, such as child support, is counted in determining eligibility. This overlaps with the Child Support and Countable Income categories.

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Variables Notes

Has any provision been implemented that excludes a child from the unit for purposes of benefit calculations, based on when that child was born or conceived?

fc_exist

Description

Indicates whether or not the state has a family cap provision.

Under AFDC

No

Date this provision was implemented

fc_1date

Description

Specifies the date when family cap policy was first implemented in the state.

Notes

This variable never changes after a family cap policy is implemented.

Under AFDC

n.a.

M1: Child excluded if born more than M1 months after initial case opening date or implementation date (whichever is later)

fc_m1mon

 

Description

Describes the number of months following the case opening after which a newborn child is excluded from the assistance unit.

Notes

Most states allow families to give birth in the first 10 months of benefit receipt without being subject to the family cap. Essentially, this allows children to be born on AFDC if they were not conceived while the mother was receiving benefits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

M2: If the unit does not receive benefits for at least M2 months, and then begins to receive benefits again, a previously "capped" child will no longer be excluded

fc_m2mon

Description

Captures the required number of months a family must be off assistance before the capped child can be counted as a member of the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate number of months
  • n.a., if state does not have a family cap provision
  • Never included, if a "capped" child is never included in the unit again
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

n.a.

M3: If the unit does not receive benefits for at least M3 months, and then begins to receive benefits again, a child who was born, conceived, or either born or conceived in the period of non-receipt will be included in the subsequent spell

fc_m3mon

Description

Captures the minimum number of months between spells of assistance required for a child born/conceived during a period of non-receipt to be included in the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate number of months
  • n.a., if state does not have a family cap provision
  • Other (description provided)

Notes

Some states have implemented this type of policy to prevent units from going off assistance to get pregnant and then returning for assistance unaffected by the family cap.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Whether the new child is included if conceived during the period of non-receipt, born during the period of non-receipt, or either born or conceived

fc_nonrc

Description

Captures whether a child is included as a member of the unit if conceived, born or either during a period of non-receipt.

Alternatives:

  • Conceived
  • Born
  • Conceived or Born
  • n.a., if state does not have a family cap provision
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

n.a.

Percentage by which the incremental benefit is reduced, for 2nd, 3rd, 4th+ child

fc_%redc

Description

Indicates the percentage by which the incremental benefits is reduced for the second, third and fourth child born while receiving benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate percents, separated by commas
  • n.a., if state does not have a family cap provision
  • Other (description provided)

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is the "capped" child included for eligibility calculations (such as the gross income test)?

fc_chelg

Description

Indicates whether the child is included in the unit when determining need.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is a child conceived due to rape or incest exempted from this rule?

fc_rpinc

Description

Indicates whether a child conceived due to rape or incest is exempted from the family cap.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is a child who does not reside with a parent exempted from this rule?

fc_chout

Description

Indicates whether a "capped" child that moves to another "child-only" unit is exempted from the family cap.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Are first births to minors already in the AFDC unit exempted from this rule

fc_1minr

Description

Indicates whether the state exempts the first births to minor parents from the family cap provision.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is any of the "capped" child's income excluded

fc_chinc

Description

Indicates whether the state excludes the "capped" child's income (e.g. child support) when determining eligibility for the unit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Other exemptions

fc_exoth

Description

Captures any additional circumstances under which a child is exempt from the family cap.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Other family caps rules or additional detail on above rules

fc_other

Description

Captures any additional details regarding the family cap provision.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Immunization and Health Screening Policies

Description:

The Immunization and Health Screening Policies category contains information on requirement and sanction policies. The variables include information on both children and adults, although the requirements usually apply only to children.

Immunization and Health Screening Requirements:

Variables include standard immunizations, regular health check-ups, and other requirements, such as Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment (EPSDT).

Immunization and Health Screening Sanctions:

This category includes sanctions resulting from the failure to meet immunization and/or health screening requirements.

The consequence of failing to meet a requirement is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Most often, this penalty is financial. Requiring the distribution of benefits through a protective payee is also considered a sanction because it directly impacts the receipt of benefits. However, consequences designed to avoid a financial or other direct penalty are considered conciliation processes, not sanctions. For example, consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are forms of conciliation and therefore are not included as a sanction.

The database only contains the worst case sanction for immunization and health screening non-compliance. For example, if there are two sanctions, a $25 reduction in benefits for the first offense and a 50% reduction for any further non-compliance, only the 50% reduction is coded. If, however, there is a sanction for immunization non-compliance and a sanction for health screening non-compliance, both sanction are coded in the worst case sanction variable.

Under AFDC, states could have immunization and health screening sanctions only under a waiver. TANF neither requires nor prohibits immunization and health screening sanctions.

Overlap Issues:

  1. The existence of Immunization and Health Screening requirements is also recorded in the Contracts & Agreements category.

Special Issues:

  1. For consistency, when a state indicates that a policy applies to children, dependent children or minor children, the variable capturing who the policy applies to should be coded "All children" and when the policy indicates children under 6, the variable should be coded "Preschool age children".

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Are there any immunization and/or health screening requirements?

(im_rqany)

Description

Captures whether the state has an immunization and/or health screening requirement.

Alternatives:

  • No, if there are no requirements. The rest of the variables are coded "n.a."
  • Yes, if any of the variables below are required. The applicable requirements are checked.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Immunizations required

(im_imreq)

Description

Captures whether the state has an immunization requirement.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Who must be immunized?

(im_imwho)

Description

Identifies who must receive immunizations.

Alternatives:

  • Ages of the children or the school status of the children as specified by the state
  • All children, if states designates children, dependent children, or minor children
  • Preschool age children, if state designates children under 6

Under AFDC

n.a.

Annual health checkups required

(im_hsreq)

Description

Captures whether the state requires annual health checkups.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Who must receive annual health checkups?

(im_hswho)

Description

Identifies who must receive annual health checkups.

Alternatives:

  • Ages of the children or the school status of the children as specified by the state
  • All children, if states designates children, dependent children, or minor children
  • Preschool age children, if state designates children under 6

Under AFDC

n.a.

Other immunization or health screening requirements

(im_rqoth)

Description

Captures whether other immunization or health screening policies are required.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Explain other immunization or health screening requirements

(im_othex)

Description

Describes any requirements other than immunizations and regular checkups.

Notes

Often, states require children to be enrolled in EPSDT. This is a Medicaid program which includes its own immunization and checkups requirements as well as other health activities such as hearing and vision screenings and screenings for age-appropriate development. Although participation in EPSDT may be required of recipients through the Medicaid program, it is only included in this category if it is specifically mentioned as a requirement for cash assistance.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Worst case sanction:

(im_wsanc)

Description

Describes the most severe penalty imposed on the unit for non-compliance with any other health and/or immunization requirements.

Alternatives:

  • Immunization: (sanction); Health Screening: (sanction).
  • No sanction, if there is no sanction
  • n.a., if there are no requirements.

Notes

The description should include what the sanction is and, if relevant, the duration of the sanction. For example: "Unit size for benefit computation excludes the child for twelve months."

If there is a sanction for immunization non-compliance and a sanction for health screening non-compliance, they are both coded in the worst case sanction variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding immunization and health screening policies.

In-kind Income

Description:

Starting in 1981, states had the option to count a portion of the value of housing assistance and/or food stamps as unearned income for purposes of determining AFDC eligibility and benefits. Under TANF, states have complete discretion in what they include in their definition of income. Only a few states used this option under AFDC, but recently the number of states using this policy has increased.

Overlap Issues:

  • None

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Is an amount added to unearned income for units in public or subsidized housing, to reflect a portion of the value of that assistance?

ik_house

Description

Indicates whether a state counts some portion of housing assistance as unearned income in determining eligibility and benefits.

Notes

The corresponding notes variable captures how the state calculates what portion of the housing assistance is included as unearned income.

Under AFDC

Prior to 1981, no.

Beginning in 1981, varied by state.

Is an amount added to unearned income for units receiving food stamps, to reflect a portion of the value of that assistance?

ik_fstmp

Description

Indicates whether a state counts some portion of Food Stamps as unearned income in determining eligibility and benefits.

Notes

The corresponding notes variable captures how the state calculates what portion of the food stamp assistance is included as unearned income.

Under AFDC

Prior to 1981, no.

Beginning in 1981, varied by state

Additional Notes

ik_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the inclusion of in-kind income when determining eligibility or benefits.

Inclusion of Non-citizens in the Unit

Description:

The Inclusion of Non-Citizens in the Unit category contains information on when and which immigrants may receive welfare benefits.

Under AFDC, non-citizens classified as permanent residents and those residing in the U.S. under color of law (PRUCOL) were eligible for assistance. Illegal immigrants and nonimmigrants were not eligible for benefits.

However, PRWORA significantly restricted TANF benefits to legal immigrants who have not become U.S. citizens. With the exception of a few federally exempted groups, states were given the discretion to provide, deny, deem, or otherwise limit benefits to current immigrants. The use of TANF funds was, however, somewhat limited by the timing of the immigrants' arrival in the U.S..

Essentially, PRWORA created two distinct time periods within which only certain groups of immigrants are always eligible for TANF dollars. The table below describes the two time periods and which groups within those periods are eligible for benefits. It should be noted that illegal and nonimmigrants are never eligible for TANF funds, but states are allowed to provide state-funded benefits to these groups if they choose. The qualified immigrants that arrived in the country before 8/22/96, who are referred to as Pre-reform immigrants, are eligible for TANF dollars if the state decides to extend benefits to these groups. Qualified immigrants that arrive in the country on or after 8/22/96, or the Post-reform immigrants (also referred to as the new immigrants), are split into sub-groups, those that have been in the U.S. less than five years and those that have been in the U.S. for five years or more. TANF funds cannot be used for new immigrants during their first five years in the country; however, states have the option to fund these immigrants at the states' expense. After the five year ban on new immigrants has passed, the states again have the option to provide benefits to all or groups of qualified immigrants using TANF funds.

Pre-reform Immigrants (Arrive in the US before 8/22/96) Post-reform Immigrants (Arrive in the US after 8/22/96)

During their first 5 years in the country

After their first 5 years in the country

Illegal/Non-Qualified

Qualified

Illegal/Non-Qualified

Qualified

Illegal/Non-Qualified

Qualified

Not eligible for federal funding. States have the option to provide funding to some or all of these individuals.

States have the option to provide benefits to all or portions of these groups with federal dollars. These immigrants were eligible until 1/1/97 at which point the state made their decisions.

Not eligible for federal funding. States have the option to provide funding to some or all of these individuals.

Not eligible for federal funding. States have the option to provide funding to some or all of these individuals.

Not eligible for federal funding. States have the option to provide funding to some or all of these individuals.

States have the option to provide benefits to all or portions of these groups with federal dollars.

This category is broken into two periods, Pre-reform and Post-reform. The Pre-reform section captures the treatment of immigrants during the AFDC years and those immigrants that were in the country before August 22, 1996. The Post-reform section captures the treatment of immigrants that arrive after August 22, 1996. The Post-reform section is further divided into the treatment of new immigrants during their first five years in the country and new immigrants after their first five years in the country. Therefore, all records before August 1996 (or more likely 1/97, since legal immigrants were eligible through 1996) are only coded for the first section of variables and all variables in the Post-reform section are coded n.a.. However, all records after 8/96 (or 1/97) are coded for both sections.

The Inclusion of Non-citizens in the Unit category also includes a section on deeming for the legal children of illegal parents. There has been some indication from CPS data that illegal immigrants are receiving benefits for their children that are legal U.S. citizens. Although, this may be very unlikely in most states, it is possible that states have included policies on deeming for these special cases. The deeming policies may or may not be the same as those used for sponsors.

Overlap Issues:

  • If a state calculates benefits or dollar amounts differently for immigrants than for citizens, the information is captured in this category, not in the Benefit Computation or Dollar Amount categories.
  1. Deeming of immigrant sponsors and illegal parents is captured in this category instead of the Deemed Income category.
  2. Although immigrant eligibility could be considered in the Eligibility of Individual Family Members or Eligibility by Number/Type of Parent categories, immigrants have their own category because of the complexity of the policies.

Special Issues:

  1. Only the variables that correspond to the Pre-reform section are coded for the AFDC years. The rest of the variables in the form are coded n.a.

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Are illegal immigrants eligible for benefits?

(nc_ilegl)

Description

Captures whether illegal immigrants, or undocumented aliens who are remaining in the U.S. without INS permission, are eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

It is highly unlikely a state will choose to provide assistance to this group. However, if a state does fund this group, include the state program name and details in the notes field.

Under AFDC

Never Eligible

Are legal nonimmigrants eligible for benefits?

(nc_nonim)

Description

Captures whether nonimmigrants, or aliens who have been admitted for a temporary stay in the U.S. in order to fulfill a specific purpose (i.e., tourists, students, business visitors), are eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

It is also unlikely that a state will provide benefits to this group, but again if the state does fund this group, include the state program name and details in the notes field.

Under AFDC

Never Eligible

Pre-Reform Qualified Immigrants

Immigrant groups that receive special consideration from the federal government.

(nc_ospec)

Description

Captures any pre-reform immigrant groups that the federal government exempts. These groups are treated essentially as citizens and are afforded the same benefits.

Alternatives:

  • n.a., for pre-reform years because this variable does not apply to years before the 1996 Welfare Reform.
  • Refugees and asylees for the first five years in the country, individuals whose deportation has been withheld for the first five years, veterans or individuals in active duty and their spouse/dependents, and permanent residents with 40 quarters of work, for post-reform years

Any restrictions on these groups are discussed in the notes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Are the following qualified immigrants eligible for benefits:

Lawful Permanent Residents?

(nc_operm)

Description

Captures whether the non-exempt group of "regular immigrants" who enter the U.S. with a green card or are permitted permanent residence under the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) or Special Agricultural Worker provisions of the IRCA are eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • All Eligible
  • Some Eligible

Notes

Some Eligible refers to instances when the state only provides benefits to specific sub groups of immigrants, i.e. children or elderly individuals.

Under AFDC

All Eligible

Asylee/Refugees

(nc_orefg)

Description

Captures whether the non-exempt immigrant group with humanitarian status based on conditions abroad (i.e., may face persecution in their homeland) is eligible for benefits. Refugee status permits non-citizens to enter from abroad, and asylee status permits non-citizens already in the U.S. to remain.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • All Eligible
  • Some Eligible

Notes

Some Eligible refers to instances when the state only provides benefits to specific sub groups of immigrants, i.e. children or elderly individuals.

Under PRWORA, this group is exempt from federal restrictions for the first five years they are in the country. This variable, however, is discussing the treatment of asylees and refugees that have been in the country longer than five years (non-exempt).

Under AFDC

All Eligible

Individuals who have had deportation withheld

(nc_dprt)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt non-citizens granted a stay of deportation or who have had their deportation withheld are eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • All Eligible
  • Some Eligible

Notes

Some Eligible refers to instances when the state only provides benefits to specific sub groups of immigrants, i.e. children or elderly individuals.

Under PRWORA, this group is exempt from federal restrictions for the first five years they are in the country. This variable, however, is discussing the treatment of individual who have had deportation withheld that have been in the country longer than five years (non-exempt).

Under AFDC

All Eligible

Parolees admitted for at least one year

(nc_oprle)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt persons or immigrant groups that are permitted entry into the U.S. in cases of emergency or because of an overriding public interest are eligible for benefits. These entrants are granted temporary residence and are not likely to become residents.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • All Eligible
  • Some Eligible

Notes

Some Eligible refers to instances when the state only provides benefits to specific sub groups of immigrants, i.e. children or elderly individuals.

Under AFDC

All Eligible

Battered Immigrants

(nc_obatt)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt non-citizens who have been battered or parents of battered children are eligible for benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Not Eligible Unless Otherwise Qualified
  • All Eligible
  • Some Eligible

Notes

Some Eligible refers to instances when the state only provides benefits to specific sub groups of immigrants, i.e. children or elderly individuals.

Not Eligible Unless Otherwise Qualified refers to instances in which the state does not exempt battered immigrants specifically. States have the option to exempt all battered immigrants, whether they would be otherwise qualified or not.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Treatment of Eligible Immigrants

Are the benefits for immigrants calculated differently than citizens' benefits?

(nc_bncl)

Description

Captures whether there is any difference between the calculation of eligible, pre-reform immigrants' benefits and citizens' benefits.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

If so, describe the differences.

(nc_obcex)

Description

Describes any differences in benefit calculations between eligible, pre-reform immigrants and citizens.

Notes

This variable includes the use of different standards or reduced benefits.

This variable is only coded if (nc_obncl) is checked.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is income deemed from an immigrant's sponsor?

(nc_odeem)

Description

Captures whether a sponsor's income is deemed to or counted toward an eligible, pre-reform immigrant's income for benefit eligibility and calculation purposes.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

Under sponsor deeming, the income and resources of an individual (or "sponsor") are added to those of an immigrant when he/she applies for needs-based assistance in order to determine if the immigrant is eligible for assistance. When the immigrant enters the country, they must have a sponsor that takes responsibility for them if they should happen to need financial help. If the immigrant should apply for assistance, a portion of the sponsor's income is used in the benefit calculation, because it is assumed that the sponsor will take care of the immigrant.

Under AFDC

Income was deemed from sponsors.

If so, for how long is deeming continued?

(nc_odmtm)

Description

Describes how long income of a sponsor is deemed available to an immigrant.

Alternatives:

  • Specified period of time, such as 3 years
  • Conditional period of time, such as deeming is continued until the immigrant becomes a citizen

Notes

This variable is only coded if (nc_odeem) is checked.

Under AFDC

3 Years

Describe the deeming process.

(nc_odmds)

Description

Describes how much of a sponsor's income is deemed to an immigrant.

Under AFDC

All of the sponsor's income minus the first $90 of earnings and 100% of the state's need standard for the sponsor and dependents was deemed to the immigrant. (The rules were the same as those for stepparents under AFDC)

Additional Notes for Pre-reform Immigrants.

(nc_oothr)

Description

Includes any additional notes on the eligibility of pre-reform immigrants.

Post-Reform Qualified Immigrants

During the First Five Years in the Country

New qualified immigrants during their first five years who receive special consideration from the federal government. (nc_5fedl)

Description

Captures any post-reform, immigrant groups that the federal government exempts during their first five years in the country. These groups are treated essentially as citizens and are afforded the same benefits.

Alternatives:

  • n.a., for pre-reform years because this variable does not apply to years before the 1996 Welfare Reform.
  • Refugees and asylees for the first five years in the country, individuals whose deportation has been withheld for the first five years, veterans and their spouse/dependents, and permanent residents with 40 quarters of work, for post-reform years

Under AFDC

n.a.

Does the state fund any additional qualified new immigrants during their first five years in the country? (nc_5ste$)

Description

Captures whether the state chooses to fund any groups of non-exempt qualified, new immigrants during their first five years in the country.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

States have the option to provide benefits using state funds during the immigrants first five years in the country. They can limit the groups in anyway that they choose. Several states have decided to provide benefits with state funds.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If yes, which groups of immigrants are included? (nc_5who$)

Description

Captures which groups of non-exempt new immigrants the state chooses to fund during their first five years in the country.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Treatment of Eligible Immigrants During their First Five Years

Are the benefits for new immigrants calculated differently than citizens' benefits?

(nc_bncl)

Description

Captures whether there is any difference between the calculation of new, eligible immigrants' benefits and citizens' benefits, during the immigrants' first five years in the U.S..

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

If so, describe the differences.

(nc_5bcex)

Description

Describes any differences in benefit calculation between eligible, new immigrants during the first five years in the U.S. and citizens. This variable includes the use of different standards or reduced benefits.

Notes

This variable is only coded if (nc_5bncl) is checked.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is income deemed from a new immigrant's sponsor? (nc_5deem)

Description

Captures whether a sponsor's income is deemed to or counted toward an eligible, new immigrant's income for benefit eligibility and calculation purposes, during the first five years in the U.S..

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

Under sponsor deeming, the income and resources of an individual (or "sponsor") are added to those of an immigrant when he/she applies for needs-based assistance in order to determine if the immigrant is eligible for assistance. When the immigrant enters the country, they must have a sponsor that takes responsibility for them if they should happen to need financial help. If the immigrant should apply for assistance, a portion of the sponsor's income is used in the benefit calculation, because it is assumed that the sponsor will take care of the immigrant.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If so, for how long is deeming continued?

(nc_5dmtm)

Description

Describes how long the deemed income of a sponsor is counted toward the income of an eligible, new immigrant during their first five years in the country.

Alternatives:

  • Specified period of time, such as 3 years
  • Conditional period of time, such as deeming is continued until the immigrant becomes a citizen

Notes

This variable is coded only if (nc_5deem) is checked.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Describe the deeming process. (nc_5dmds))

Description

Describes how much of a sponsor's income is deemed to an eligible, new immigrant during their first five years in the country.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional notes for Post-reform immigrants during the first five years. (nc_nothr)

Description

Includes any additional notes on the eligibility of post-reform immigrants during their first five years in the country.

After the First Five Years

Are the following new, qualified immigrants eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country?

Lawful Permanent Residents?

(nc_nperm)

Description

Captures whether the non-exempt group of new immigrants who enter the U.S. with a green card or are permitted permanent residence under the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) or Special Agricultural Worker provisions of the IRCA are eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country .

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants

These options are the same for the following four variables.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Asylee/Refugees (nc_nrefg)

Description

Captures whether the non-exempt group of new immigrants with humanitarian status based on conditions abroad (i.e., may face persecution in their homeland) is eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country. Refugee status permits non-citizens to enter from abroad, and asylee status permits non-citizens already in the U.S. to remain.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants

Notes

Under PRWORA, this group is exempted from federal restrictions for the first five years they are in the country. This variable, however, is discussing the treatment of asylees and refugees that have been in the country longer than five years (non-exempt).

Under AFDC

n.a.

Individuals who have had deportation withheld

(nc_ndprt)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt new non-citizens granted a stay of deportation or who have had their deportation withheld are eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants

Notes

Under PRWORA, this group is exempted from federal restrictions for the first five years they are in the country. This variable, however, is discussing the treatment of individuals who have had deportation withheld and have been in the country longer than five years (non-exempt).

Under AFDC

n.a.

Parolees admitted for at least one year

(nc_nprle)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt new immigrants that are permitted entry into the US in cases of emergency or because of an overriding public interest are eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country. These entrants are granted temporary residence and are not likely to become residents.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants

Under AFDC

n.a.

Battered Immigrants

(nc_nbatt)

Description

Captures whether non-exempt new non-citizens who have been battered or parents of battered children are eligible for benefits after their first five years in the country.

Alternatives:

  • Not Eligible
  • Not Eligible Unless Otherwise Qualified
  • Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated the Same as the Pre-reform Immigrants
  • Some Eligible, Treated Differently than the Pre-reform Immigrants

Not Eligible Unless Otherwise Qualified refers to instances in which the state does not exempt battered immigrants specifically. States have the option to exempt all battered immigrants, whether they would be otherwise qualified or not.

Under AFDC

n.a.

If any immigrant group is treated differently from the Pre-reform immigrants, describe the differences. (nc_treat)

Description

Describes any differences between the treatment of eligible, post-reform immigrants and eligible, pre-reform immigrants. This variable includes information regarding benefit calculation or deeming differences.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Describe any special requirements the state places on immigrants in order for them to receive benefits.

(nc_reqre)

Description

Captures any special requirements states may place on new immigrants after their first five years in the country in order for them to be eligible.

Notes

Some states have indicated that they will require new immigrants to reside in the state for at least one year before they are eligible to apply for benefits. This variable includes a full description of any and all special rules that apply to new immigrants.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes for Post-reform Immigrants during the first five years. (nc_5othr)

Description

Includes any additional notes on the eligibility of post-reform immigrants after their first five years in the country.

Deeming of Illegal Immigrant Parents

Is the income of an illegal immigrant parent deemed to their legal immigrant child to determine benefit eligibility?

(nc_illdm)

Description

Captures whether the income of an illegal immigrant parent is deemed to their legal immigrant child when determining benefit eligibility.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Notes

Instances in which an illegal immigrant has a legal immigrant child, either because the child was born in the U.S. or the child was given citizenship for some other reason. If the child applies for benefits, the parents are still responsible for the child's support and all or a portion of their earnings may be deemed to the child. Although it seems a bit strange that an illegal alien would admit they are illegal for purposes of deeming, it does happen and states may have policies for this situation.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Initial Allocation:

Illegal immigrant parent: Allocation of earned income (nc_ilal1)

Description

Describes the initial allocation of an illegal immigrant parent's income (An allocation is the portion of the parent's income they are allowed to keep/the portion of the income not deemed).

Alternatives:

  • None
  • Disregard E1 only
  • Same as for recipients
  • Disregard E1 and child care
  • other (Add alternative including codes from Earned Income Disregard category)

Second Allocation:

Illegal immigrant parent: Allocation equal to W% of X dollar amount for Y people up to maximum Z

(nc_ila2w)

 

(nc_ila2x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(nc_ila2y)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(nc_ila2z)

W

Description

Captures the percent value of W in the next allocation (amount of illegal immigrant parent's income they can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • the appropriate percent

X

Description

Captures the value of X in the next allocation (amount of illegal immigrant parent's income they can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • Total income after initial allocation
  • Earned income after initial allocation
  • Federal Poverty Guideline
  • State Dollar Amount #1
  • State Dollar Amount #2
  • State Dollar Amount #3
  • Other (Add description)

Y

Description

Captures the value of Y in the next allocation (amount of illegal immigrant parent's income they can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • Stepparent only
  • Dependent children outside the unit
  • Stepparent plus dependent children outside the unit
  • n.a.

Z

Description

Captures the value of Z in the next allocation (amount of illegal immigrant parent's income they can keep): The allocation equals W% of X dollar amount for Y people up to maximum Z.

Alternatives:

  • No maximum
  • Total remaining income
  • Remaining earned income
  • Unearned income

Under AFDC:

n.a.

Illegal immigrant parent: Other allocation rules

Description

Describes any additional allocations of an illegal immigrant parent's income (amount of illegal immigrant parent's income they can keep).

Additional Notes

(nc_iloth)

Description

Captures any additional information regarding the inclusion of non-citizens in the unit.

Income and Assets of Children

Description:

This category indicates whether the income, earned and unearned, of children in an assistance unit is excluded when determining the unit's eligibility or benefit. "Children" refers to individuals with child status under each state's AFDC/TANF definitions. In states where children's income receives special treatment, details are provided concerning the specific type of children involved and the length of time their income is excluded.

Overlap Issues:

  • Deductions from earned income of adults are captured in the Earned Income Disregards category. The rules captured in Earned Income Disregards also apply to the earned income of children if their income receives no special treatment.
  • A complete exclusion of children's earnings could be considered a 100% disregard and could be coded in the earnings disregard category; however, the complete exclusion of children's earnings is captured in this category.
  • Treatment of child support income is covered in the Child Support category.
  • Deeming of income from persons outside the assistance unit is covered in the Deemed Income category.

Special Issues:

  • The variable Unit Type is coded for "All" and only refers to children in an assistance unit.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Children whose earned income receives special treatment.

ic_sptmt

Description

Indicates which type of children, if any, receive special treatment with regard to their earned income.

Alternatives:

  • Children in any school, part-time or full-time
  • Children in secondary or vocational school, full-time
  • No special treatment, counted as earned income
  • Other state-specific descriptions provided

Under AFDC

Earned income of full time students could be disregarded for up to 6 months when determining unit's eligibility. If the unit was deemed eligible, a state could disregard earned income from full-time students and part-time students (not working full time) for up to 6 months when determining benefit level.

Number of months that those children's earnings are excluded from income used to determine the unit's eligibility

ic_elmon

Description

Indicates the number of months per year earnings of the children described in ic_sptmt are excluded when determining eligibility.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate number of months
  • All, if income is always excluded

Under AFDC

6, for a majority of the states.

Number of months that those children's earnings are excluded from income used to determine the unit's benefit

ic_bnmon

Description

Indicates the number of months per year earnings of the children described in ic_sptmt are excluded when determining an assistance unit's benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate number of months
  • All, if income is always excluded

Under AFDC

6, for a majority of the states.

Are summer earnings for those children disregarded?

ic_summr

Description

Captures whether a child's summer earnings are disregarded.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Treatment of child's saving when determining a unit's eligibility and benefit.

ic_trsav

Description

Captures how a child's savings are treated when determining an assistance unit's eligibility and benefit.

Alternatives:

  • Appropriate response indicated if mentioned. Example: Saving for education, excluded
  • Not mentioned

Under AFDC

Treated the same as savings of adults.

Additional Notes

ic_other

Description

Captures any additional notes regarding the income and assets of children.

 

Income Eligibility Tests

Description:

Income eligibility tests began under AFDC and most states continue to use them in their TANF programs. Under AFDC, recipients and applicants were subject to different sets of tests. Applicant assistance units had to pass two income tests in order to be eligible. First, a unit's gross earned and unearned income (before applying any earnings disregards) had to be less than 185 percent of the state's need standard. The need standard was based on each state's definition of the cost of meeting basic living needs for a family of a given size. Second, a unit's net income (earned after applying the earned income disregards plus unearned income) had to be less than the payment standard. After passing both of these tests, a unit was considered financially eligible, provided the value of their assets was below a designated level. Units who received benefits in the previous month only had to pass the gross income test. The net income test was implicit in the calculation of benefits. (See information under Special Issues)

Under waivers, a few states made changes to income eligibility tests, such as removing the gross income test or setting income eligibility limits as a percentage of the federal poverty level. Changes to income eligibility limits were also made implicitly when states changed need or payment standards or modified earnings disregards under waivers.

PRWORA did not specify the income eligibility tests that states had to use under TANF, giving states the flexibility to maintain the AFDC eligibility rules or create new ones.

Overlap Issues:

  • The disregards used to determine net earned income are outlined in the Earned Income Disregard category.
  • Earned and unearned income counted in determining gross and net income is outlined in the following categories: Countable Income, Income and Assets of Children, Deemed Income, In kind Income, Child Support and Family Caps.
  • Definitions of State Dollar Amounts #1-3 are contained in the Dollar Amounts category.
  • Dollar amounts for specific family sizes are described in the Dollar Amounts category.

Special Issues:

  • The distinction between calculating whether or not a family qualifies for a positive benefit and a net income test is not clear in many states. As a result, the database is coded under a strict definition of whether tests designated by the state are actually coded as tests. A rule referred to as a "test" by a state is only coded as a test if the disregards and/or the dollar amounts used in that test differ from those used in calculating benefits. For example, under AFDC, some state manuals stated that recipients must also pass a net income test in order to receive benefits. Net earned income was calculated by subtracting the $90 work expense disregard, the $30 and 1/3 disregard (provided the time limit on these disregards had not expired for the unit) and, the appropriate child care deductions from the unit's gross earned income. Net income was then calculated by adding the unit's net earned income to their unearned income. If this net income was less than the payment standard for the appropriate family size, the unit was considered eligible. In calculating the benefit for a recipient family, the same disregards were applied to gross earned income and then the same total net income was subtracted from the payment standard. In this case, the disregards and dollar amounts used in the net income test and the benefit calculation were the same. Consequently, the net income test described by the state was not coded in the database. In this case, the benefit computation is an implicit eligibility test, even though the state calls it a net income test.
  • Under AFDC and under many state TANF plans, states have different tests for applicants and recipients. Therefore, two records are coded for most states.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Is there an eligibility test that compares gross income to a threshold?

et_gsinc

Description

Indicates whether the state has any test that compares gross income (unearned income plus earned income without disregards) to an income threshold.

Under AFDC

Applicants - Yes

Recipients - Yes

Percent by which threshold is multiplied for the gross income test

et_gits%

Description

Describes the percent by which the threshold is multiplied for the gross income test.

Under AFDC

185

Threshold against which gross income is compared

et_githr

Description

Indicates the threshold against which gross income is compared.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line

Under AFDC

Dollar amount #1 (identified as the need standard in the Dollar Amounts category).

Is there an eligibility test that compares gross earnings to a threshold?

et_gsern

Description

Indicates whether the state has any test that compares gross earnings (earned income without disregards) to an income threshold.

Under AFDC

No

Percent by which threshold is multiplied for the gross earnings test

et_gets%

Description

Describes the percent by which the threshold is multiplied for the gross earnings test.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Threshold against which gross earnings is compared

et_gethr

Description

Indicates the threshold against which gross earnings is compared.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is there an eligibility test that compares net income to a threshold?

et_ntinc

Description

Indicates whether the state has any test that compares net income (unearned income plus earned income with disregards) to an income threshold.

Under AFDC

Applicants - Yes

Recipients - No

Percent by which threshold is multiplied for the net income

et_nits%

Description

Describes the percent by which the threshold is multiplied for the net income test.

Under AFDC

Applicants - 100

Recipients - n.a.

Threshold against which net income is compared

et_nithr

Description

Indicates the threshold against which net income is compared.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line

Under AFDC

Applicants - State dollar amount #1

Recipients - n.a.

Is there an eligibility test that compares net earnings to a threshold?

et_ntern

Description

Indicates whether the state has any test that compares net earnings (earned income with disregards) to an income threshold.

Under AFDC

No

Percent by which threshold is multiplied for the net earnings test

et_nets%

Description

Describes the percent by which the threshold is multiplied for the net earnings test.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Threshold against which net earnings is compared

et_nethr

Description

Indicates the threshold against which net earnings are compared.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line

Under AFDC

n.a.

Is there an eligibility test that compares unearned income to a threshold?

et_unern

Description

Indicates whether the state has any test that compares unearned income to an income threshold.

Under AFDC

No

Percent by which threshold is multiplied for the unearned income test

et_uets%

Description

Describes the percent by which the threshold is multiplied for the unearned income test.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Threshold against which unearned income is compared

et_uethr

Description

Indicates the threshold against which unearned income is compared.

Alternatives:

  • State dollar amount #1
  • State dollar amount #2
  • State dollar amount #3
  • Federal poverty line

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

et_other

Description

Captures any additional information regarding income eligibility tests.

Minor Parent Activities Requirements and Bonuses

Description:

This category is designed to capture activities requirements and school bonuses that apply only to minor parents, as defined by each state. While some states capture activities required of minor parents in their activities/work programs (information coded in the Activities Exemptions, Activities Requirements and Activities Sanctions categories), other states consider minor parent requirements a separate issue/policy. This category was created to insure that the database captures the requirements specific to minor parents, regardless of their exemption status in the Activities categories. However, these requirements may also be captured in the Activities Requirements category if the state considers these requirements part of their overall work/activity program.

This category divides minor parents into two groups: those without a high school diploma or GED and those with a high school diploma or a GED. The section pertaining to minor parents without a diploma or GED contains variables designed to capture the school requirements and/or work requirements that apply to these minor parents. This section also contains variables that indicate the circumstances under which minor parents are excused from meeting these requirements and the consequences for not meeting the requirements.

The second section provides information regarding the requirements of minor parents with a diploma or a GED. The first variable in this section describes the activity requirements for minor parents who have a high school diploma or GED. The remaining variables outline the consequences of not meeting the requirements and which minor parents are exempted from the requirements.

In addition to these two section, the final section in this category outlines the details of any school bonuses that apply to minor parents. In some states, the monthly benefit for minor parents is increased if these parents meet specific school achievements. This category outlines the requirements necessary to receive a bonus, to whom the bonuses are available, as well as the value of the bonuses.

Overlap issues:

·This category may contain replicated information from the Activities Exemptions, Activities Requirements and Activities Sanctions categories because those category outline each state's work/activity program exactly as it is described in their manual. This category extracts the information relevant to minor parents from that program as well as any other additional program rules that apply to minor parents, 17 years old or younger

·School Policies for Dependent Children contains information regarding school requirements and bonuses for dependent children in the unit. While some states treat minor parents as dependent children in a larger unit, the database only contains information regarding dependent children without children of their own in the School Policies for Dependent Children category. Information regarding school requirements and bonuses for all minor parents (including minor parents that some states consider dependent children) are coded in this category.

Special Issues:

n.a.

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Minor Parents with No High School Diploma or GED

Activities requirements for minor parents who have not finished high school or received a GED

(ma_noged)

Description

Describes the type of activities required of minor parents who do not have a high school diploma or GED.

Alternatives:

  • Must be in school full-time
  • Must be in school part-time
  • Must be in school or working towards a GED
  • Must be in school under certain circumstances
  • May be in school
  • Must participate in non-school activities only

Notes

Alternatives using "Must" indicate that if the minor parents does not meet that requirement he/she is sanctioned.

Alternatives using "May" indicate that other options exist; therefore, a minor parent that does not participate in school may do something else in order to avoid a sanction.

If some minor parents without a diploma or GED must be in school, while others may be in school, code this variable as "Must be in school under certain circumstance". Describes the circumstances in the "Explain activities requirement" variable.

School indicates junior high or senior high, not vocational school. If a state considers vocational school as a part of high school, alter the alternatives to include high school/vocational school.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS, states had one of two policies:

  • Must be in school or working towards a GED
  • May be in school

Explain activities requirements

(ma_ngdsc)

Description

Explains any relevant details associated with the activities requirements for minor parents who do not have a high school diploma or GED.

Notes

Explanation should include:

  • details about school participation, such as definitions of full and part-time
  • circumstances under which minor parent must be in school
  • what is required if minor parent does not choose to be in school
  • non-school activities required

If the variable "Activities requirements for minor parents who have not finished high school or received a GED" is coded "May be school," the following information should be coded:

If minor chooses not to attend school, he/she must meet the same requirements as non-exempt,...

  • adults (If only 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in single parent unit (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in two-parent unit (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in single or two parent unit depending on the minor parent's marital status (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • minor parents described in the minor parent record of Activities Requirements

If the variable "Activities requirements for minor parents who have not finished high school or received a GED" is coded "Must participate in non-school activities", the following information should be coded:

Minor parent must meet same requirements as,

  • adults (If only 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in single parent unit (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in two-parent unit (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • adults in single or two parent unit depending on the minor parent's marital status (If more than 1 record is coded in Activities Requirements)
  • minor parents described in the minor parent record of Activities Requirements

Under AFDC

Under JOBS:

  • If "Must be in school or working towards a GED," all non-exempt minor parents under the age of 20 must be in school.
  • If "Must be in school under certain circumstances," All non-exempt, minor parent under the age of 20 must be in school; however, minor parents not making sufficient progress may be placed in training or work activities.

What are the exceptions to the required activities?

(ma_ngexp)

Description

Describes the circumstances under which minor parents (who do not have a high school diploma or GED) do not have to meet the requirements described in "Explain activities requirements."

Notes

Code "No Exemptions" if there are no exceptions

Under AFDC

Under JOBS:

Minor parents with children under the age of 3 are excused if child care is not guaranteed by the state.

States had the option of excusing minor parents from the school requirement if they were beyond the age of the compulsory school attendance requirement.

What are the consequences if minor parents do not participate in the required activities?

(ma_ngsnc)

Description

Describes the consequences/sanctions for minor parents (who do not have a high school diploma or GED) who do not participate in the required activities.

Alternatives:

If a minor parent record is coded for Activities Sanctions, use the following option:

  • See Minor Parent record in Activities Sanctions

If only one record is coded for Activities Sanctions, use the following option:

  • Same as non-exempt adults

If more than one record is coded in Activities Sanctions and none of the records are specifically for minor parents, use one of the following options:

  • Same as non-exempt, adults in single parent unit
  • Same as non-exempt, adults in two-parent unit
  • Same as single, non-exempt adults, if minor parent is single. Same as non-exempt, adults in two-parent unit, if minor parent is married

If none of the sanctions described in the Activities Sanctions, apply to minor parents, describe the sanctions.

Under AFDC

Under JOBS:

Same as non-exempt adults

 

Minor Parents with High School Diploma or GED

Activity requirements of minor parents with a high school diploma or GED

(ma_hvged)

Description

Indicates how a minor parent with a high school diploma or GED is treated.

Alternatives:

If a minor parent record is coded for Activities Requirements, use the following option:

  • See Minor Parent record in Activities Requirement

If only one record is coded for Activities Requirements, use the following option:

  • Same as non-exempt adults

If more than one record is coded in Activities Requirements and none of the records are specifically for minor parents, use one of the following options:

  • Same as non-exempt, adults in single parent unit
  • Same as non-exempt, adults in two-parent unit
  • Same as single, non-exempt adults, if minor parent is single. Same as non-exempt, adults in two-parent unit, if minor parent is married

If requirements of minor parents are not captured in the state's work program, and therefore they are not captured in the Activities categories, use the following option:

  • Treated differently than any individuals described in Activities Requirements

Under AFDC

Under JOBS:

Same as non-exempt adults, if older than the age of exemption indicated in the Activities Exemption category.

If treated differently than all individuals described in Activities Requirements, explain activities requirements

(ma_hgdif)

Description

Explains activity requirements specific to minor parents with a high school diploma or GED, if different from all individuals described in Activities Requirements

Notes:

This variable should be coded n.a., unless minor parents are treated differently than all individuals described in Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

n.a.

What are the exceptions to the required activities?

(ma_hgexp)

Description

Describes the circumstances under which minor parents (who have a high school diploma or GED) are not required to meet the requirements described in "Explain activities requirements."

Notes:

This variable should be coded n.a. unless minor parents are treated differently than all individuals described in Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

n.a.

What are the consequences if minor parents do not participate in the required activities?

(ma_hgsnc)

Description

Describe the consequences/sanctions for minor parents (who have a high school diploma or GED) who do not participate in the required activities.

Notes:

This variable should be coded n.a. unless minor parents are treated differently than all individuals described in Activities Requirements.

Under AFDC

n.a.

School Bonuses for Minor Parents

Does the state offer school bonuses to minor parents?

(ma_bonus)

Description

Indicates whether the state offers school bonuses to minor parents

Under AFDC

No

Explain the reasons for bonuses

(ma_sbwhy)

Description

Describes the reasons why a minor parent may receive a school bonus

Notes

If a state has more than one bonus, enter this information for all bonuses in this field. Distinguish between bonuses by coding "Bonus 1:" before information referring to the first bonus and "Bonus 2:" before information referring to the second bonus, etc.

Under AFDC

n.a.

To whom are the bonuses applied:

(ma_sbwho)

Description

Describes which minor parents are potentially eligible for school bonuses

Notes

If a state has more than one bonus, enter this information for all bonuses in this field. Distinguish between bonuses by coding "Bonus 1:" before information referring to the first bonus and "Bonus 2:" before information referring to the second bonus, etc.

Under AFDC

n.a.

What is the amount and duration of the bonus?

(ma_sbamt)

Description

Describes the amount of the minor parent's school bonus and any information regarding how often the unit may receive a school bonus

Notes

If a state has more than one bonus, enter this information for all bonuses in this field. Distinguish between bonuses by coding "Bonus 1:" before information referring to the first bonus and "Bonus 2:" before information referring to the second bonus, etc.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional notes on school bonuses for minor parents.

(ma_sboth)

Description

Captures any additional information on the state's school bonuses for minor parents.

Notes

If a state has more than one bonus, enter this information for all bonuses in this field. Distinguish between bonuses by coding "Bonus 1:" before information referring to the first bonus and "Bonus 2:" before information referring to the second bonus, etc.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Captures any additional information regarding activities requirements and bonuses for minor parents.

School Policies for Dependent Children

Description:

The School Policies for Dependent Children category includes information on school-related requirements, school-related sanctions and school-related bonuses. All variables in the category apply only to dependent children in the assistance unit.

School Requirements:

Under states' general laws, all school-age children are required to attend school. For our purposes, however, a policy is considered a school requirement only if the state's manual explicitly mentions it as a requirement for cash assistance. These policies may require children to attend school, to achieve at least a minimal grade point average and/or parents to be involved in their children's education in some way.

School Sanctions:

A school sanction results when an assistance unit fails to meet one or more of the states' school requirements.

The consequence of failing to meet a requirement is coded as a sanction only if it results in a direct penalty. Most often, this penalty is financial. Requiring the distribution of benefits through a protective payee is also considered a sanction because it directly impacts the receipt of benefits. However, consequences designed to avoid a financial or other direct penalty are considered conciliation processes, not sanctions. For example, consequences such as discussing the problem with a case worker, developing a formal plan for addressing the problem and even "probationary periods" in which the requirement becomes more stringent are forms of conciliation and therefore are not included as a sanction.

The maximum and minimum sanction amount and duration are coded for each school requirement.

School Bonuses:

These variables capture financial incentives for assistance units whose children meet specific attendance or achievement standards. So, whereas school sanctions penalize assistance units that do not meet school requirements, school bonuses reward units that do meet certain standards.

Some states may have more than one bonus. The form only contains one set of variables for any and all school bonuses. So, if states do have more than one bonus, they are all coded in the same field. For example, "Bonus 1: $25; Bonus 2: $50; Bonus 3: $100, etc".

Under AFDC, states could only impose school policies using waivers. TANF neither requires nor prohibits school policies.

Overlap Issues:

  • This category includes information on school policies for dependent children only. It does not cover school requirements, sanctions or bonuses for minor parents. Those policies are included in the Minor Parent Activities Requirements and Bonuses category.
  1. It is possible that school bonuses could overlap with the Benefit Computation category. In Virginia there is a small school attendance demonstration project in three middle schools. The families of children participating in the program have their benefits calculated at 100% of the state standard of need instead of the usual 90% of need, provided they meet school attendance, achievement, and involvement goals. Instead of creating new records for Virginia in the Benefit Computation category, the increased benefit level is treated as a school bonus.
  1. Some states allow individuals ages 18 and 19 who have not completed school, to remain eligible if they stay in school and are scheduled to complete their degree by the age of 19. Although, this may seem like a school requirement specifically for 18 and 19 year olds, it is really an eligibility issue. Consequently, it is captured in the Eligibility of Individual Family Members category.

Special Issues:

  1. A record should be coded for every state/year even if they do not have any School Policies.
  2. The "unit type" should be coded "all", even though the policies generally apply only to the children in the unit.

Variables and Notes:

Description Notes

Any school requirements?

(sp_ screq)

Description

Captures whether the state has any school requirements.

Alternatives:

  • No, if there are no school requirements. The rest of the variables are coded n.a..
  • Yes, if any school requirements exist. The applicable requirements are checked.

Under AFDC

n.a.

School attendance

(sp_attend)

Description

Captures whether school attendance is required.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Extent of school attendance required:

(sp_atdef)

Description

Explains what the state means by school attendance.

Notes

School attendance requirements sometimes include specific rules about how many unexcused absences are required (e.g. "not more than 4 unexcused absences in a nine-week period") and other times the description is vague (e.g. regular school attendance).

Under AFDC

n.a.

School attendance requirement applies to:

(sp_atwho)

Description

Captures which children are required to attend school.

Notes

Some states require attendance of all school-age children. Others specify ages, grade levels, graduation, or some combination (over 16 and not yet graduated from high school). Again, only requirements applying to dependent children are coded in this category. Minor parents are captured elsewhere.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Minimum and maximum amount of sanction (including duration)

(sp_atsnc)

Description

Captures the minimum and maximum sanction that could be applied to a unit's benefit if they do not comply with the school attendance requirement in the state. The variable also includes the length of time each sanction is imposed.

Alternatives:

  • Min: (sanction & duration); Max:(sanction & duration) [For example, Min: $25 reduction in benefits each month until compliance; Max: permanent removal of unit head from benefit computation]
  • No Sanction, if no sanction policy exists
  • n.a., if there are no school requirements

Notes

Duration responses often include "until compliance" or "permanently", but there may be more specific time frames established by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Parental involvement

(sp_prent)

Description

Captures whether parents are required to be involved in their children's education in any way other than encouraging school attendance.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Explain the parental involvement required

(sp_ptdef)

Description

Explains any school-related parental involvement required other than encouraging school attendance.

Notes

Most often, the parental involvement required is that parents attend school conferences. Other states may require parents to meet goals determined for each family by team of school personnel.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Minimum and maximum amount of sanction (including duration)

(sp_ptsnc)

Description

Captures the minimum and maximum sanction that could be applied to an assistance unit's benefit if they do not comply with the parental involvement requirement in the state. The variable also discusses the length of time each sanction is imposed on the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Min: (sanction & duration); Max:(sanction & duration) [For example, Min: $25 reduction in benefits each month until compliance; Max: permanent removal of unit head from benefit computation]
  • No Sanction, if no sanction policy exists
  • n.a., if there are no school requirements

Notes

Responses often include "until compliance" or "permanently", but there may be more specific time frames established by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

School achievement

(sp_achve)

Description

Captures whether students are required to achieve at least minimum school standards.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No

Under AFDC

n.a.

Extent of school achievement required

(sp_acdef)

Description

Describes any school achievement requirements.

Notes

As of 1996, only one state had a school achievement requirement. These were non-specific: "Goals determined for each family by a team of school personnel". However, more specific requirements may arise. This variable would capture such requirements as minimum grade averages and possibly even high school graduation.

Under AFDC

n.a.

School Achievement requirement applies to:

(sp_acwho)

Description

Captures the age or grade range of children who must meet school achievement requirements.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Minimum and maximum amount sanction (including duration)

(sp_acsnc)

Description

Captures the minimum and maximum sanction that could be applied to a unit's benefit if they do not comply with the school achievement requirement in the state. The variable also includes the length of time each sanction is imposed on the unit.

Alternatives:

  • Min: (sanction & duration); Max:(sanction & duration) [For example, Min: $25 reduction in benefits each month until compliance; Max: permanent removal of unit head from benefit computation]
  • No Sanction, if no sanction policy exists
  • n.a., if there are no school requirements

Notes

Responses often include "until compliance" or "permanently", but there may be more specific time frames established by the state.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Describe the overlap of sanction policies: are they cumulative?

(sp_snctn)

Description

Captures the interaction between sanctions and/or whether the sanctions are imposed simultaneously or consecutively (if the unit is not complying with more than one requirement) .

Under AFDC

n.a.

Bonuses Offered?

(sp_bonus)

Description

Identifies whether any school bonuses are offered for compliance with school requirements.

Alternatives:

  • Yes
  • No (If no, the rest of the bonus variables should be coded n.a.)

Under AFDC

n.a.

Reason for bonus:

(sp_bndef)

Description

Describes what a recipient must do to receive the school bonus (e.g. "graduation from high school"; "C average or better").

Notes

Some states may have more than one bonus. Since the form only contains one set of variables for any and all school bonuses, all bonuses are all coded in the same field. For example, "Bonus 1: C average or better; Bonus 2: graduation from high school, etc".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Bonus available to:

(sp_bnwho)

Description

Identifies who is categorically eligible to receive the bonus (e.g. "All children under 16").

Notes

Some states may have more than one bonus. Since the form only contains one set of variables for any and all school bonuses, all bonuses are all coded in the same field. For example, "Bonus 1: All children under 16; Bonus 2: All children under 6, etc".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Bonus Amount and duration:

(sp_bnamt)

Description

Describes the dollar or other value of the school bonus (e.g. "$100"; "AFDC benefits calculated at 100% of the State's standard of need.") and the amount of time the bonus is allowed (some options are "One time bonus" or "monthly benefit increase").

Notes

Some states may have more than one bonus. Since the form only contains one set of variables for any and all school bonuses, all bonuses are all coded in the same field. For example, "Bonus 1: $25 for 2 months; Bonus 2: $150 one time, etc".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes:

(sp_bnoth)

Description

Captures any additional information regarding school policies.

Time Limits

Description:

The Time Limits category describes the various limits that either terminate or reduce an assistance unit's benefits due to the amount of time they have received aid. Note that time limits which require a unit head to do something in order to continue receiving assistance, such as work activity time limits are not captured in this category. Only time limits that affect the unit's benefit are discussed in this category.

AFDC:

There was no limit on the number of months an assistance unit could receive benefits under AFDC; however, some states were granted waivers that introduced time limits to all or portions of the state. Time limits can either terminate or reduce a unit's benefits after a set period of time. Most states did exempt certain groups of people from time limits or granted an extension to certain groups after the time limit was reached.

PRWORA:

The federal government restricts TANF assistance to 60 months. This means, unless an assistance unit is exempted, they may only receive 60 months of benefits in their lifetime. States have the option to exempt up to 20% of the caseload from the 60 month rule, in any way that they choose. However, if the state wants to provide benefits to more than 20% of the caseload for more than five years, the recipients must be funded using state money.

State Options:

States may not use TANF funds to provide benefits to unit's after the head has been receiving for more than 60 months; however, states do have several options. States'

  • may limit benefits to less than 60 months.
  • may use state funds to provide benefits to units after the 60 month limit has expired.
  • that had a waiver before the reform are allowed to continue the waiver if they are less restrictive than the federal regulations.
  • may employ any type or combination of time limits they choose.

Description of Time Limit Types:

States have developed several different types of time limits that either reduce benefits, limit the number of consecutive months a unit can receive benefits or terminate benefits. Often states use a combinations of time limits. The following describes the types of time limits captured in this category.

Lifetime Limit

Limits the number of months an assistance unit is able to receive benefits over the unit's lifetime. In other words, there is a finite number of months in which an assistance unit is eligible for benefits. The federal lifetime limit is 60 months, however, states have the option to extend or shorten this limit. The months of assistance do not need to be accumulated consecutively.

Periodic Limit

Limits the number of months an assistance unit may receive benefits within a given period of time. Basically, the unit is eligible for a specified number of benefit months within another specified period of time. For example, if the periodic limit is 12 out of 24 months, the assistance unit may only receive 12 months of benefits in any 24 month period. This time limit does not require the unit to use the 12 months consecutively. A unit may, for example, receive benefits for 2 months, leave assistance for 4 months and receive another 10 months of benefits. To determine if an assistance unit is eligible in a given month, the state calculates the number of months, during the previous 24, the unit received benefits. If the number of months in which benefits were received equals 12, the unit is not eligible. If the number of months is less than 12, the unit is eligible for another month of benefits. So, the 24 months is not static from the point the unit first received benefits, but can be any 24 month period.

Benefit Waiting Period

Under this type of limit, an assistance unit is ineligible for benefits for a specified number of months after they have received benefits for another specified number of months. For example, a unit is ineligible for benefits for 12 months after they have received benefits for 24 months. It does not matter how long it takes the unit to accumulate the initial 24 months, the unit is ineligible for 12 months after 24 months of receipt.

Benefit Reduction Limit

This type of limit does not terminate benefits, but it reduces an assistance unit's benefit after a specified number of months of receipt. The benefit reduction is usually permanent and does not stem from a sanction or noncooperation. Even if the unit fulfills every requirement, the unit's benefit will be reduced. Often the reduction is equivalent to the unit head's portion of the benefit. Sometimes, the reduced amount is returned to the family in the form of a voucher payment or given to a third-party as payment.

Note: If a periodic or benefit waiting period time limit does not result in the termination of benefits for the entire unit, but rather the unit head is removed (or the benefit is reduced), the limit is coded in the section devoted to the periodic or benefit waiting period and information about the benefit reduction is provided in the notes variable for that time limit.

Extensions and exemptions:

As mentioned above, the federal government allows states to exempt up to 20% of their caseload from the 60 month time limit. The state has full discretion in choosing which groups, if any, they exempt. Exemptions and extensions are two ways to exclude individuals from the 60 month time limit. Often state definitions of and the distinction between extensions and exemptions is vague, but they can affect people in very different ways. Essentially, they do the same thing. The month that is exempted or extended is not counted toward a unit's time limit. However, if a person is exempted from the time limit, the clock stops for the unit as long as the circumstances exist. So, when their circumstances change and the clock again begins to tick, they still have 60 months of benefits. Extensions, on the other hand, only occur after the unit has reached their time limit. If the unit reaches the time limit, but meets certain criteria, their benefits will continue as long as they qualify for the extension. However, when the unit no longer meets the extension criteria, they are ineligible for assistance.

Both extensions and exemptions allow an assistance unit to remain eligible for another month. However, exemptions stop the time limit clock, while extensions only delay ineligibility for another month.

 

Overlap Issues:

  • Work-Related Time Limits are discussed in the Activities Requirement category

 

Special Issues:

  • This category contains seven separate sections; Time Limits, Lifetime Limits, Periodic Time Limits, Benefit Waiting Period, Benefit Reduction Limits, Exemptions and Extensions, and Additional Information.
  • The first and last sections, Time Limits and Additional Information, address general issues related to the states time limit policies.
  • Four sections: Lifetime Limits, Periodic Time Limits, Benefit Waiting Period, Benefit Reduction Limits, describe the specifics of state time limit policies. Each time limit policy contains A, B, and C variables that identify the number of months and units covered by the limit. The three variables (A, B, C) are only used if the time limit policy varies by unit type or characteristic of a unit member. For example, if the state allows units with children under the age of six to receive benefits for 60 months, while units with no children under age six are only allowed to receive benefits for 48 months, Lifetime Limits A and B are coded. Limit A is coded for units with children under age six and Limit B is coded for units with no children under age six. Each section follows this same logic. Whenever a time limit policy varies by unit type or characteristic of a unit member, the limits are coded separately within one record.
  • The final section, Extensions and Exemption, identifies which time limits exempt or extend months for various types of situations.
  • The "Unit Type" variable in the header record is always coded "all". Any unit variation is coded in the record.
  • April 1999, the final Federal Regulation on TANF were released. The federal government clarified their position on state waivers and the federal 60 month limit. They indicate that any months during which a non-exempt head of household receives TANF funded assistance under a waiver will count toward the federal time limit. Therefore, in addition to the state time limit, there is also a 60 month lifetime limit that applies retroactively to all recipients as of the date TANF began or first month of receipt under the waiver, whichever is later. A note to this affect is included in the additional notes section for states that have a waiver without a lifetime limit.

Variables and Notes:

Time Limits

Type of Time Limits

(tl_types)

Description

Describes which combination of time limits the state employs.

Alternatives:

  • Lifetime Limit
  • Periodic Limit
  • Benefit Waiting Period
  • Benefit Reduction Limit
  • All combinations of the above choices

Notes

Several combinations have been added to the pull down box, but if one of the combinations is not included, simply type in the limit names as seen above. Add an 'and' in between the combinations, or commas and an 'and' if there is more than two limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Lifetime Limit

Lifetime Limit A:

Number of assistance months allowed

(tl_lamos)

Description

Describes the maximum number of months an assistance unit is eligible for benefits for the group described in Lifetime Limit A.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_lawho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Lifetime Limit A.

Notes

If the limit affects everyone in the state, the variable is coded, "All non-exempt recipients".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Lifetime Limit B:

Number of assistance months

(tl_lbmos)

Description

Describes the maximum number of months an assistance unit is eligible for benefits for the group described in Lifetime Limit B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_lbwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Lifetime Limit B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Lifetime Limit C:

Number of assistance months

(tl_lcmos)

Description

Describes the maximum number of months an assistance unit is eligible for benefits for the group described in Lifetime Limit C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_lcwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Lifetime Limit C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When was this policy implemented in the state

(tl_limpl)

Description

Captures the Lifetime Limit implementation date.

Notes

The date should be coded X/X/XX.

If the policy applies retroactively to recipients as of another date, the header record should be coded with the implementation date and the retroactive date should be coded here.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When does time begin accumulating toward the unit's limit

(tl_lwhen)

Description

Describes when the Lifetime Limit begins for the assistance unit.

Notes

Often, this variable is coded as "in first month of receipt", but some states may not begin counting the benefit months until the unit is enrolled in the state's work program. Even though states may have work requirements, some parts of the state may not have the resources to provide all recipients with support services. Until the unit has access, the state may exempt them from the time limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Notes

(tl_lloth)

Description

Includes any special notes on Lifetime Limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Periodic Time Limit

Periodic Limit A

X months of assistance allowed during Y months

(tl_paxmo)

 

 

 

 

(tl_paymo)

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits in Periodic Limit A. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the period (Y) in which the assistance unit may accumulate benefits in Periodic Limit A. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_pawho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Periodic Limit A.

Notes

If the limit affects everyone in the state, the variable is coded, "All non-exempt recipients".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Periodic Limit B

X months of assistance allowed during Y months

(tl_pbxmo)

 

 

 

(tl_pbymo)

 

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits in Periodic Limit B. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the period (Y) in which the assistance unit may accumulate benefits in Periodic Limit B. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_pbwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Periodic Limit B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Periodic Limit C

X months of assistance allowed during Y months

(tl_pcxmo)

 

 

 

(tl_pcymo)

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits in Periodic Limit C. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the period (Y) in which the assistance unit may accumulate benefits in Periodic Limit C. The limit equals X months of assistance allowed during Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_pcwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Periodic Limit C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When was this policy implemented in the state

(tl_pimpl)

Description

Captures the Periodic Limit implementation date.

Notes

The date should be coded X/X/XX.

If the policy applies retroactively to recipients as of another date, the header record should be coded with the implementation date and the retroactive date should be coded here.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When does time begin accumulating toward the unit's limit

(tl_pwhen)

Description

Describes when the Periodic Limit begins for the assistance unit.

Notes

Often, this variable is coded as "in first month of receipt", but some states may not begin counting the benefit months until the unit is enrolled in the state's work program. Even though states may have work requirements, some parts of the state may not have the resources to provide all recipients with support services. Until the unit has access, the state may exempt them from the time limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Notes

(tl_ploth)

Description

Includes any special notes on Periodic Limits.

Benefit Waiting Period

Benefit Waiting Period A

May receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months

(tl_waxmo)

 

 

 

 

(tl_waymo)

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits before ineligible in Benefit Waiting Period A. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the number of months an assistance unit is ineligible (Y) after receiving benefits for a certain number of months in Benefit Waiting Period A. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_wawho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Waiting Period A.

Notes

If the limit affects everyone in the state, the variable is coded, "All non-exempt recipients".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Benefit Waiting Period B

May receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months

(tl_wbxmo)

 

 

 

 

(tl_wbymo)

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits before ineligible in Benefit Waiting Period B. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the number of months an assistance unit is ineligible (Y) after receiving benefits for a certain number of months in Benefit Waiting Period B. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_wbwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Waiting Period B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Benefit Waiting Period C

May receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months

(tl_wcxmo)

 

 

 

 

(tl_wcymo)

X

Description

Captures the number of months (X) an assistance unit may receive benefits before ineligible in Benefit Waiting Period C. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Y

Description

Captures the number of months an assistance unit is ineligible (Y) after receiving benefits for a certain number of months in Benefit Waiting Period C. The limit states, may receive X months of assistance, then ineligible for Y months.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units covered by this time limit policy

(tl_wcwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Waiting Period C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When was this policy implemented in the state

(tl_wimpl)

Description

Captures the Benefit Waiting Period implementation date.

Notes

The date should be coded X/X/XX.

If the policy applies retroactively to recipients as of another date, the header record should be coded with the implementation date and the retroactive date should be coded here.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When does time begin accumulating toward the unit's limit

(tl_wwhen)

Description

Describes when the Benefit Waiting Period begins for the assistance unit.

Notes

Often, this variable is coded as "in first month of receipt", but some states may not begin counting the benefit months until the unit is enrolled in the state's work program. Even though states may have work requirements, some parts of the state may not have the resources to provide all recipients with support services. Until the unit has access, the state may exempt them from the time limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Notes

(tl_wpoth)

Description

Includes any special notes on Benefit Waiting Period.

Benefit Reduction Limit

Benefit Reduction Limit A:

Number of countable assistance months after which reduction is applied

(tl_ramos)

Description

Describes the number of months an assistance unit can receive benefits before their benefit is reduced in Benefit Reduction A.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units Covered by this time limit policy

(tl_rawho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Reduction A.

Notes

If the limit affects everyone in the state, the variable is coded, "All non-exempt recipients".

Under AFDC

n.a.

Type of reduction applied

(tl_rahow)

Description

Describes how the benefit if reduced in Benefit Reduction A.

Notes

Often the head of the household is removed from the benefit computation, but states may reduce the benefit by a percentage or flat dollar amount.

Any information regarding how income and assets of an excluded member are treated is also coded in this variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Benefit Reduction Limit B:

Number of countable assistance months after which reduction is applied

(tl_rbmos)

Description

Describes the number of months an assistance unit can receive benefits before their benefit is reduced in Benefit Reduction B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units Covered by this time limit policy

(tl_rbwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Reduction B.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Type of reduction applied

(tl_rbhow)

Description

Describes how the benefit if reduced in Benefit Reduction B.

Notes

Often the head of the household is removed from the benefit computation, but states may reduce the benefit by a percentage or flat dollar amount.

Any information regarding how income and assets of an excluded member are treated is also coded in this variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Benefit Reduction Limit C:

Number of countable assistance months after which reduction is applied

(tl_rcmos)

Description

Describes the number of months an assistance unit can receive benefits before their benefit is reduced in Benefit Reduction C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Units Covered by this time limit policy

(tl_rcwho)

Description

Describes the type of assistance units that are affected by Benefit Reduction C.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Type of reduction applied

(tl_rchow)

Description

Describes how the benefit if reduced in Benefit Reduction C.

Notes

Often the head of the household is removed from the benefit computation, but states may reduce the benefit by a percentage or flat dollar amount.

Any information regarding how income and assets of an excluded member are treated is also coded in this variable.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When was this policy implemented in the state

(tl_rimpl)

Description

Captures the Benefit Reduction implementation date.

Notes

The date should be coded X/X/XX.

If the policy applies retroactively to recipients as of another date, the header record should be coded with the implementation date and the retroactive date should be coded here.

 

Under AFDC

n.a.

When does time begin accumulating toward the unit's limit

(tl_rwhen)

Description

Describes when the Benefit Reduction Limit begins for the assistance unit.

Notes

Often, this variable is coded as "in first month of receipt", but some states may not begin counting the benefit months until the unit is enrolled in the state's work program. Even though states may have work requirements, some parts of the state may not have the resources to provide all recipients with support services. Until the unit has access, the state may exempt them from the time limits.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Notes

(tl_rdoth)

Description

Includes any special notes on benefit reduction.

Exemptions and Extensions

Type of extension policy

(tl_extyp)

Description

Captures how the extension policy is implemented in the state. Basically, this variable describes if the state has a set policy on granting extensions or if each case is evaluated on its own personal merits.

Alternatives:

  • Case by case
  • Specific rules
  • No extensions
  • Not mentioned

Under AFDC

n.a.

Type or characteristic of Month:

Allowed as Exemption:

Allowed as Extension:

Length of Extension

The following statements describe different types of months or months with different types of unit members. Determine whether each month is allowed as exemptions or extensions and if so, to which time limits the exemption or extension applies. If a month is allowed as an extension, include the maximum length of time for which benefits can be extended.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Describes which time limits either exempt, extend benefits, or both exempt and extend benefits to assistance units.

Alternatives:

  • Not Allowed
  • Lifetime Limit
  • Periodic Limit
  • Benefit Waiting Period
  • Benefit Reduction
  • All Combinations

Notes

The exemptions and extensions are coded according to how the state refers to the months. States often do not clearly define the difference between exemptions and extensions, so if they are used interchangeably, both fields should be coded.

Under AFDC

n.a.

The length of extension indicates the maximum amount of time a unit can be extended for each individual month type.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Months in which benefits were received in another state

(tl_steex)

 

(tl_steen)

 

 

(tl_stelg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which benefits were received in another state.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which benefits were received in another state.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which benefits were received in another state.

Months, after TANF began, in which benefits were received under a waiver

(tl_wavex)

 

(tl_waven)

 

 

(tl_wavlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months, after TANF began, in which benefits were received under a waiver.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months, after TANF began, in which benefits were received under a waiver.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months, after TANF began, in which benefits were received under a waiver.

Months in which a diversion payment was received

(tl_divex)

 

(tl_diven)

 

 

(tl_divlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which a diversion payment was received.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which a diversion payment was received.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which a diversion payment was received.

Months in which a minor parent received benefits as a unit head

(tl_minex)

 

(tl_minen)

 

 

(tl_minlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which a minor parent received benefits as a unit head.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which a minor parent received benefits as a unit head.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which a minor parent received benefits as a unit head.

Months in which the unit head is elderly

(tl_eldex)

 

(tl_elden)

 

(tl_eldlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head is elderly.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head is elderly.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head is elderly.

Notes

The state' definition of elderly is explained in the notes at the end of this section.

Months in which the unit head is caring for a young child

(tl_chlex)

 

(tl_chlen)

 

 

(tl_chllg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head is caring for a young child.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head is caring for a young child.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head is caring for a young child.

Notes

The age of the child is defined in the notes at the end of this section.

Months in which the unit head is ill/incapacitated/disabled

(tl_illex)

 

(tl_illen)

 

 

(tl_illlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head is ill/incapacitated/disabled.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head is ill/incapacitated/disabled.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head is ill/incapacitated/disabled.

Months in which the unit head cares for an ill/incapacitated/disabled adult relative or child

(tl_creex)

 

(tl_creen)

 

 

(tl_crelg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head cares for an ill/incapacitated/disabled adult relative or child.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head cares for an ill/incapacitated/disabled adult relative or child.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head cares for an ill/incapacitated/disabled adult relative or child.

Months in which the unit head participates in drug, alcohol, or mental health treatment

(tl_tmtex)

 

(tl_tmten)

 

 

(tl_tmtlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head participates in drug, alcohol, or mental health treatment.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head participates in drug, alcohol, or mental health treatment.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head participates in drug, alcohol, or mental health treatment.

Months in which the assistance unit is fleeing from or receiving treatment for domestic violence or abuse

(tl_dvlex)

 

(tl_dvlen)

 

 

 

(tl_dvllg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the assistance unit is fleeing from or receiving treatment for domestic violence or abuse.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the assistance unit is fleeing from or receiving treatment for domestic violence or abuse.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the assistance unit is fleeing from or receiving treatment for domestic violence or abuse.

Months in which the unit head is not job ready due to limited job skills, poor education and/or illiteracy

(tl_njrex)

 

 

(tl_njren)

 

 

 

(tl_njrlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head is not job ready due to limited job skills, poor education and/or illiteracy.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head is not job ready due to limited job skills, poor education and/or illiteracy.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head is not job ready due to limited job skills, poor education and/or illiteracy.

Notes

This variable includes any extensions or exemptions when a unit head is participating in job training or education programs.

Months in which support services (i.e. child care, transportation) are not available

(tl_nssex)

 

(tl_nssen)

 

 

(tl_nsslg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which support services (i.e. child care, transportation) are not available.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which support services (i.e. child care, transportation) are not available.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which support services (i.e. child care, transportation) are not available.

Months in which jobs are unavailable due to high local unemployment

(tl_uneex)

 

(tl_uneen)

 

 

(tl_unelg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which jobs are unavailable due to high local unemployment.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which jobs are unavailable due to high local unemployment.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which jobs are unavailable due to high local unemployment.

Months in which unit head is not required to participate in work activities

(tl_nrqex)

 

(tl_nrqen)

 

 

(tl_nrqlg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which unit head is not required to participate in work activities.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which unit head is not required to participate in work activities.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which unit head is not required to participate in work activities.

Months in which unit head works at an unsubsidized job

(tl_jobex)

 

(tl_joben)

 

 

(tl_joblg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which unit head works at an unsubsidized job.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which unit head works at an unsubsidized job.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which unit head works at an unsubsidized job.

Months in which the unit head has fully cooperated with program requirements and still cannot find employment

(tl_copex)

 

(tl_copen)

 

 

 

(tl_coplg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit head has fully cooperated with program requirements and still cannot find employment.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit head has fully cooperated with program requirements and still cannot find employment.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit head has fully cooperated with program requirements and still cannot find employment.

Months in which the unit is sanctioned

(tl_sncex)

 

(tl_sncen)

 

(tl_snclg)

Description

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for months in which the unit is sanctioned.

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for months in which the unit is sanctioned.

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for months in which the unit is sanctioned.

Other #1

(tl_ot1de)

(tl_ot1ex)

 

(tl_ot1en)

 

(tl_ot1lg)

Description

Describes Other Reason #1.

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for other reason #1

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for other reason #1

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for other reason #1

Other #2

(tl_ot2de)

(tl_ot2ex)

 

(tl_ot2en)

 

(tl_ot2lg)

Description

Describes Other Reason #2.

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for other reason #2

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for other reason #2

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for other reason #2

Other #3

(tl_ot3de)

(tl_ot3ex)

 

(tl_ot3en)

 

(tl_ot3lg)

 

Description

Describes Other Reason #3.

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for other reason #3

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for other reason #3

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for other reason #3

Other #4

(tl_ot4de)

(tl_ot4ex)

 

(tl_ot4en)

 

(tl_ot4lg)

Description

Describes Other Reason #4.

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for other reason #4

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for other reason #4

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for other reason #4

Other #5

(tl_ot5de)

(tl_ot5ex)

 

(tl_ot5en)

 

(tl_ot5lg)

Description

Describes Other Reason #5.

Describes which time limit(s) exempt units for other reason #5

Describes which time limit(s) extend benefits to units for other reason #5

Describes how long benefits are extended to units for other reason #5

Notes on extensions and exemptions

(tl_exadd)

Description

Includes any additional information on month type or details regarding extension/exemption.

Notes on the maximum number of extensions or maximum months of extended benefits

(tl_exmax)

Description

Includes notes on the maximum number of extensions and/or maximum months of extended benefits allowed under time limits.

Notes

This variable includes any or all of the following information if noted in the manual:

  • Maximum number of extensions per unit
  • Maximum number of months benefits can be

extended for a unit

  • Maximum number of extensions for each type of

extension if maximum varies by extension type

Additional Information

 

If there is no lifetime limit, is there a funding source or program change when a unit has received benefits for a certain number of months?

(tl_nolmt)

Description

Describes the funding source or program change that occurs when a non-exempt assistance unit continues to receive benefits after they have reached the federal or state time limit.

Notes

This variable is for states that have no lifetime limit on benefits. At the end of 60 months, if the state wants to continue providing benefits, they must use state funds or move the recipients into another program. Any information on this type of policy is captured in this variable. Very few states are providing benefits past 60 months, so for most states the variable is coded n.a.

This variable also includes any information in the manual about funding.

Under AFDC

n.a.

When cash assistance is terminated due to expiration of time limit, what is the effect on other programs, such as food stamps, child care, Medicaid and general assistance?

(tl_fsmef)

Description

Includes any information on how other programs, such as Food Stamps, child care, Medicaid and General Assistance, are affected by the termination of benefits due to the expiration of a time limit.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Additional Notes

Description

Includes any general time limit information.

Transitional Benefits

Description:

The Transitional Benefits category describes the services that assistance units are eligible for after losing AFDC/TANF benefits. This category focuses on transitional child care and transitional Medicaid; however, any other transitional benefits a state offers are also captured in this category.

Under AFDC, states offered two type of transitional assistance to units that became ineligible for benefits due to increased earnings or the lose of certain earned income disregards: Transitional Child Care and Transitional Medicaid.

Transitional Child Care:

The Family Support Act of 1988 required states, as of April 1990, to provide 12 months of Transitional Child Care (TCC) to former recipients who met two requirements. First, assistance units were only eligible for TCC if they lost benefits because their income exceeded the eligibility limits due to one of the following circumstances: an increase in wages, an increase in the number of hours worked or the expiration of an earned income disregard (see Overlap Issues for details). Second, units were only eligible if they received assistance for at least 3 out of the previous 6 months prior to losing benefits. In addition to these federal requirements, states had the option of requiring units to pay a fee for TCC based on a sliding scale.

Transitional Medicaid Assistance:

Beginning April 1981, the federal government required states to extend four months of Transitional Medicaid Assistance (TMA) to units who lost benefits due to increased earnings. The Deficit Reduction Act of 1984 expanded these Medicaid benefits. The states were still required to provide 4 months of TMA to units who lost benefits due to increased earnings; however, beginning October 1984, states were also required to provide 9 months of TMA to units who lost assistance due to the removal of the one-third earned income disregard. States also had the option to provide 6 months of Medicaid for units that lost benefits due to the removal of the $30 and one-third earned income disregards.

The Family Support Act of 1988 revised the previous Transitional Medicaid benefits. Beginning April 1990, the federal government required states to offer assistance units 12 months of TMA, provided the units met certain eligibility requirements. First, assistance units were only eligible for TMA if they lost benefits because their income exceeded the eligibility limits due to one of the following circumstances: an increase in wages, an increase in the number of hours worked or the expiration of an earned income disregard (see Overlap Issues for details). Second, units were only eligible if they received assistance for at least 3 out of the previous 6 months prior to losing benefits. Finally, after the first 6 months of TMA, units could only receive the additional 6 months if their gross earnings (net of child care expenses) were below 185% of the Federal Poverty Guideline.

In addition to these federal requirements, states had the option of instituting other restrictions on TMA receipts.

During the second six months of TMA, states could limit the scope of coverage, charge a premium for units with incomes above 100% of poverty and/or offer alternative sources of coverage, such as HMOs or state run insurance plans. In addition to these options, states could, in any of the 12 months, use Medicaid funds to pay the employee's portion of premiums if the unit received coverage from a new employer.

Under waiver demonstrations, many states changed the duration of and eligibility restrictions for transitional benefits. Most states extended TMA and TCC from 12 to 24 months and/or removed the 3 out of 6 months requirement. A few states extended transitional benefits to units that were ineligible for reasons other than increased earnings.

Under TANF, states are no longer required to operate TCC because child care funding is now dispersed through a separate child care block grant. However, many states have continued their TCC programs. Although TCC is not required under TANF, the federal government still requires that states provide 12 months of Medicaid for units that lose benefits due to increased earnings.

Overlap Issues:

  • Expiration of earned income disregards refers to the elimination of the $30 and/or the one-third disregards. In addition to the $90 work expense disregard and the child care deduction under AFDC, states allowed units to disregard $30 plus one-third of their remaining earnings for the first four months of consecutive earnings. After the first 4 months, units could disregard $30 of their earnings for an additional 8 months of consecutive earnings. After these 12 months, units were only allowed the $90 work expense and the child care disregard. More details regarding disregards are found in the Earned Income Disregard category.

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Variable Notes

Is Transitional Child Care provided to some or all former program participants?

tb_tcpvd

Description

Indicates whether a state provides Transitional Child Care to some or all former program participants.

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, yes.

Is Transitional Child Care limited to cases closed due to increased hours of work, increased earnings, or duration of work?

tb_tcltd

Description

Indicates whether a state limits Transitional Child Care benefits to cases that are closed because the unit's income exceeds the eligibility limits due to increased hours of work, increased earnings or the expiration of earned income disregards.

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, yes

What other causes of case closure are allowable to receive Transitional Child Care?

tb_tccls

Description

Describes other situations in which a unit may lose benefits and still remain eligible for Transitional Child Care.

Alternatives:

  • Increased resources from marriage
  • Increases in child support
  • Increases income or assets from any source
  • n.a., if tb_tcltd is Yes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Required duration of prior assistance receipt to be eligible for Transitional Child Care?

tb_tcdur

Description

Describes the duration of prior assistance receipt required for a unit to be eligible for Transitional Child Care.

Alternatives:

  • 3 of last 6 months prior to ineligibility
  • None
  • n.a., if state does not provide TCC

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, 3 of last 6 months prior to ineligibility

Number of months Transitional Child Care is available without income eligibility restrictions?

tb_tcmos

Description

Indicates the number of months Transitional Child Care is available without income eligibility restrictions.

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, states were required to provide up to 12 months of TCC without income restrictions, but they had the option of requiring a fee based on a sliding scale.

Other Transitional Child Care rules?

tb_tcoth

Description

Describes any additional rules that apply to Transitional Child Care.

Under AFDC

None

Is Transitional Medicaid provided to some or all former program participants?

tb_tmpvd

Description

Indicates whether state provides Transitional Medicaid coverage to some or all former program participants.

Under AFDC

Since 1981, yes.

Is Transitional Medicaid limited to cases closed due to increased hours of work, increased earnings, or duration of work?

tb_tmlmt

Description

Indicates whether a state limits Transitional Medicaid to cases that are closed because the unit's income exceeds the eligibility limits due to increased hours of work, increased earnings or the expiration of earned income disregards.

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, yes.

This variable does not apply prior to April 1, 1990. See description above.

What other causes of case closure are allowable to receive Transitional Medicaid?

tb_tmcls

Description

Describes other situations in which a unit may lose benefits and still remain eligible for Transitional Medicaid.

Alternatives:

  • Increased resources from marriage
  • Increases in child support
  • Increases income or assets from any source
  • n.a., if tb_tmlmt is Yes.

Under AFDC

n.a.

Required duration of prior assistance receipt to be eligible for Transitional Medicaid?

tb_tmdur

Description

Describes the duration of prior assistance receipt required for a unit to be eligible for Transitional Medicaid.

Alternatives:

  • 3 of last 6 months prior to ineligibility
  • None
  • n.a., if state does not provide TMA

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, 3 of last 6 months prior to ineligibility

Number of months that Transitional Medicaid is available?

tb_tmmos

Description

Captures the number of months that Transitional Medicaid is available.

Under AFDC

Since April 1, 1990, federal regulations required that states provide TMA for 12 months after a unit became ineligible for acceptable reasons.

Other Transitional Medicaid rules?

tb_tmoth

Description

Describes additional rules that apply to Transitional Medicaid.

Under AFDC

None

Other Transitional Benefits

tb_other

Description

Describes additional transitional benefits a state provides (other than child care and medical benefits).

Notes

For example, South Dakota provides a Transitional Employment allowance equal to one month's AFDC benefit in the initial month after ineligibility.

Under AFDC

None

 

Treatment of Additional Adults in the Household

Description:

This category describes how states treat noncaretaker adults living in the household with an assistance unit. These adults include adult relatives (e.g. mother living with her daughter and her daughter's children) living with a caretaker and their children, nonparent, partners (e.g. boyfriend with no children) living with the caretaker, or nonrelative, nonpartners (e.g. a friend of the mother heading the unit) living in the household. The adults described in this category do not have children of their own living in the household and are not the primary caretaker of any of the children in the household.

The category captures information about three types of information; which adults are eligible for benefits, how income of nonunit members is treated, and how shared shelter costs affect eligibility and benefits. In some states, adults who live in the household but have no children living with them may be included in the assistance unit. If the adults are included in the unit, their income is counted like all other adult members of the unit. Generally, if the adult is not included in the unit, their income is not counted against the unit for eligibility or benefits. However, in some cases, states may count some portion of the nonunit adult's income against the unit's eligibility or benefits. These policies are included in this category. Finally, some states reduce benefits or provide lower eligibility thresholds for those assistance units that do not pay for all or any of their shelter costs. Often these policies are imposed only when the unit lives with a relative who pays the shelter costs; however, some states reduce benefits when the unit lives with any adult who pays for the family's shelter (including a boyfriend or girlfriend).

Overlap Issues:

  • Other eligibility information about individuals in the household is captured in the following categories: Eligibility of Individual Family Members, Inclusion of Noncitizens in the Unit, and Units Headed by Minor Parents.
  • The Dollar Amounts category contains information on decreases in benefits for families living in public or subsidized housing. Most states make a distinction between families that receive housing assistance from the government versus assistance from a friend or family member (i.e. they live with a family member who pays the rental costs). For those states that do not make a distinction -- indicating that any family not paying for rent will receive a lower benefit -- the information should be coded in both categories.

Special Issues:

  • None

Variables and Notes:

Variables Notes
Eligibility of Nonparent Adults Living in the Household
Inclusion of Adult Relative Living in the Household (Essential Persons)
ta_relel

Description

Indicates whether an adult relative (sometimes called an essential person) living in the household with a parent caretaker and children is included in the unit.

 

Alternatives:

  • Prohibited
  • Mandatory
  • At the Option of Unit Head (details specified in the notes for this variable)
  • Only if Providing Care to Children in Unit

 

Notes

If some, but not all, adult relatives are eligible, define in the notes field which types of adults are eligible.

 

Under AFDC

Some states allowed persons other than caretakers and children to receive benefits, if those persons were considered essential to the well-being of the children.

Inclusion of Adult, Non-parent Partner Living in the Household
ta_parel

Description

Indicates whether an adult, nonrelative partner (boyfriend or girlfriend who is not the parent of a child in the unit) living in the household with a parent caretaker and children is included in the unit.

 

Alternatives:

  • Prohibited
  • Mandatory
  • At the Option of Unit Head (details specified in the notes for this variable)
  • Only if Providing Care to Children in Unit

 

Notes

If some, but not all, adult-nonrelative partners are eligible, define in the notes field which types of adults are eligible.

 

Under AFDC

Some states allowed persons other than caretakers and children to receive benefits, if those persons were considered essential to the well-being of the children.

Inclusion of Adult, Nonrelative, Nonpartner (e.g. adult friend with no children)
ta_nrel

Description

Indicates whether an adult, nonrelative nonpartner (e.g. an adult friend with no children) living in the household with a parent caretaker and children is included in the unit.

 

Alternatives:

  • Prohibited
  • Mandatory
  • At the Option of Unit Head (details specified in the notes for this variable)
  • Only if Providing Care to Children in Unit

 

Notes

If some, but not all, adult-nonrelative nonpartners are eligible, define in the notes field which types of adults are eligible.

 

Under AFDC

Some states allowed persons other than caretakers and children to receive benefits, if those persons were considered essential to the well-being of the children.

Inclusion of Nonunit Members' Income
When an adult who is living in the household is not included in the unit, is a portion of his or her income counted toward the unit?
ta_incon

Description

Indicates whether income of a noncaretaker adult who is living in the household but not included in the assistance unit is counted as unearned income toward the unit's eligibility or benefit calculations.

 

Under AFDC

The income of individuals not included in the unit (other than stepparents, grandparents, and immigrant sponsors) was not counted against the unit.

Whose income is counted?
ta_inwho

Description

Specifies which types of adults' income are counted as unearned income.

 

Alternatives:

  • Relative Adults Only
  • Nonparent Partners Only
  • Nonrelative, Nonpartner Only
  • Relative Adults and Nonparent Partners
  • Relative Adults and Nonrelative, Nonpartner
  • Nonparent Partners and Nonrelative, Nonpartner
  • N.A.

 

Under AFDC

N.A.

What portion of the nonunit member's income is counted?
ta_inamt

Description

Describes what portion of the noncaretaker adult's income is counted.

 

Notes

Describe, in detail, the formula used for allocating income to the unit.

 

Under AFDC

N.A.

Counted income affects which calculations?
ta_intes

Description

Indicates whether the income counted from a noncaretaker adult is counted as unearned income toward the unit's eligibility and/or benefit calculations.

 

Alternatives:

  • Eligibility Calculations Only
  • Benefit Computation Only
  • Both Benefit Computation and Eligibility Calculations
  • N.A.

 

Under AFDC

N.A.

Sharing Shelter Costs
When an adult who is living in the household is not included in the unit but may pay for a portion of the shelter costs, is the unit's eligibility and/or benefit affected (sometimes called proration)?
ta_prora

Description

Captures whether a state prorates benefits for units living in households with persons excluded from the unit. In some states, assistance units who live in households with non-recipients may receive decreased benefits. This policy is known as proration. States assume that persons sharing a household also share shelter and utility costs, thereby decreasing the need of these recipients.

Notes

This policy is different from the information captured in dollar amounts related to decreases in benefits based on public or subsidized housing. Most states will make a distinction between families that receive housing assistance from the government versus assistance from a friend or family member (i.e. they live with a family member who pays the rental costs). For those states that do not make a distinction and simply describe that any family not paying for rent will receive a lower benefit, the information should be coded in both places.

 

Under AFDC

Some states prorated benefit under AFDC when the family lived with a relative or partner.

Under what circumstances are eligibility/benefits affected?
ta_prwhn

Description

Captures the circumstances under which proration is applied to the eligibility and/or benefit calculations of the unit. For example, some states only prorate if units live with a relative excluded from the unit, while others prorate if the unit lives with any person excluded from the unit.

 

Under AFDC

Some states prorated benefit under AFDC when the family lived with a relative or partner.

Which living arrangements affect eligibility/benefit?
ta_prwho

Description

Indicates which living arrangements cause state to reduce the unit's benefits.

 

Alternatives:

  • Relative Adults Only
  • Nonparent Partners Only
  • Nonrelative, Nonpartner Only
  • Relative Adults and Nonparent Partners
  • Relative Adults and Nonrelative, Nonpartner
  • Nonparent Partners and Nonrelative, Nonpartner
  • N.A.

 

Under AFDC

Some states prorated benefit under AFDC when the family lived with a relative or partner.

How are eligibility and/or the benefit affected by sharing shelter?
ta_pramt

Description

Captures how the prorated benefit amount is calculated.

 

Notes

For example, an amount equal to the actual shelter costs per household member could be deducted from the benefit (Idaho in 1990) or alternatively, the state could subtract the need standard amount for each non-unit person in the household from the benefit level (Michigan in 1990).

 

Under AFDC

The calculation varied by state.

Sharing shelter affects which calculations?
ta_prtes

Description

Indicates whether the reduction in benefit for sharing shelter costs impacts the unit's eligibility and/or benefit calculations.

 

Alternatives:

  • Eligibility Calculations Only
  • Benefit Computation Only
  • Both Benefit Computation and Eligibility Calculations
  • N.A.

 

Under AFDC

Generally, only the unit's benefit was decreased for sharing shelter with nonunit members.

 

Appendix C: Glossary


Term Definition

AFDC

Aid to Families with Dependent Children

Allocation

The portion of a non-unit person's income that is set aside for their needs (and the needs of their dependents outside of the unit) when determining the amount of their income deemed available to the assistance unit.

This portion of the non-unit person's income is subtracted from their total income and the remainder is deemed available to the unit. See Deemed Income for additional information.

Assistance Unit

Members of a family or household that are considered part of the group eligible to receive welfare assistance. The members of this group vary from state to state, depending on the state's eligibility rules.

Assistance unit is often shortened to unit.

Deemed Income

The amount of non-unit persons' income that the state considers available to the assistance unit when determining eligibility and benefits. Under AFDC, states recognized that non-unit members who lived with the assistance unit provided some financial support for the unit. As a result, states determined that some of the non-unit person's income was available to the unit and included that income when determining the unit's eligibility and benefits. The non-unit person's income counted as part of the unit's income is considered Deemed Income. The amount of income deemed available is determined by subtracting the non-unit person's allocations from their total income, the remainder is the deemed income.

Disregard

Amount of earned income an assistance unit can subtract from their gross earned income when determining eligibility or benefits. Also referred to as a deduction.

Deduction

Amount of earned income an assistance unit can subtract from their gross earned income when determining eligibility or benefits. Also referred to as a disregard.

Family

All related individuals, living in the same dwelling.

Field

Rectangular space in the Access form where data are entered.

Form

Access screens where data are entered and viewed. Each form has a set structure that displaying variable definitions and provides blank fields for entering data.

Household

All individuals living in the same dwelling.

Non-Unit Persons

Individual in the family or household that is not considered part of the assistance unit.

Record

A record is the set of variables that captures a state's policies for a given category. A record is comparable to an observation in a survey data set.

TANF

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families.

WRD

Welfare Rules Database.