The following information must be verified for all initial applications prior to certification:
To determine the type of verification required for each factor, refer to the appropriate manual section below or the Allowable FAMIS Verification Codes chart.
Gross income that is not excluded must be verified for all EUs prior to certification. Refer to Allowable FAMIS Verification Codes chart for the acceptable codes.
Acceptable hard copy documentary verification (HC) includes, but are not limited to the following:
When all attempts to verify the income have failed because the person or organization providing the income failed to cooperate with the EU and the worker, and all other sources of verification are unavailable, arrive at an amount to be used based on the best available information. Refer to Anticipating Income.
NOTE: File all hard copy documentary verification of gross income in the case record.
Record any comments regarding the income source, reason ended or anything else regarding a particular income source that requires further explanation on the Income (FMX0) screen.
Record any comments regarding the income amount, verification, or any comments needed to explain irregular amounts, disregarded checks, and type of documentary evidence received on the Income Amount (FMX3) screen.
Providing immigrant status of each EU member is voluntary, however the individuals for whom the immigrant status is not provided are not eligible and are considered non-applicants. Verify the eligible status of all applicant immigrants. Do not attempt to verify the status of individuals for whom the head of EU does not wish to apply. It is the responsibility of the applicant/EU to provide the documents. If an immigrant does not want FSD to contact U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to verify his or her status, FSD must give the EU the option of withdrawing its application or participating without that EU member.
Verify immigrant status by viewing the immigrant's USCIS document. Refer to Section 1105.097.00 Appendix A-VERIFICATION OF IMMIGRATION STATUS for information on acceptable forms of documentation.
To verify the validity of the documents provided by the EU:
EXCEPTIONS: The following statuses do not require additional verification through SAVE:
An immigrant is ineligible until acceptable documentation is provided unless:
FAMIS gives the EU at least ten days to provide the requested information. The list of outstanding verification and the date by which the verification must be provided appears on the Outstanding Verification (FM3M) screen.
Enter the appropriate hard copy documentary verification (HC) code and status code on the Non-Citizen Information (FMML) screen. Record a comment regarding when the verification was received and any other information not contained on the Non-Citizen (FMML) screen.
NOTE: Client statement can be acceptable for United States Non-citizen Nationals and Immigrants from Micronesia and Marshall Islands.
Verify all deductible medical expenses that total more than $35 per month, prior to initial certification incurred by:
NOTE: : If a medical expense is allowed for a person receiving SSI based on presumptive eligibility, and eligibility is later terminated, remove the medical deduction from the food stamp case.
Spouses or other persons receiving benefits as a dependent of the above SSI recipients are not eligible to receive this deduction. SSI essential persons do not qualify for a medical deduction.
Acceptable hard copy documentary verification (HC) includes, but are not limited to the following:
For mileage, verify the number of trips made to the pharmacy, doctor, or hospital. Client's statement (CS) is valid verification of mileage.
Enter the allowable medical expenses on Medical Expense (FMXA) screen. Record a comment regarding when the verification was received and any other pertinent information.
Providing the social security number of each EU member is voluntary. Failure to provide an SSN will result in the denial of food stamp benefits to each individual failing to provide an SSN.
Obtain SSNs of each EU member applying to receive benefits. If an individual is unable to provide an SSN, require the individual to submit an Application for a Social Security Number to the SSA.
If the Social Security number is provided, but verification is not available, do not pend the application. Have the Social Security number entered into the common area on the SUPD screen. Client statement (CS) is acceptable verification. The system will send the SSN to SSA to verify the number and FAMIS will enter system (SY) as the verification code on the SSN Information (FMAS) screen.
If the Social Security number is provided with verification, enter the number into the common area on SUPD screen. Enter hard copy (HC) as the verification code and record comment on the SSN Information (FMAS) screen. The system will send the SSN to SSA to verify the number and FAMIS will enter system (SY) as verficiation code on the SSN Information (FMAS) screen.
Acceptable verification of the SSN includes, but are not limited to the following:
Refer to ENTERING AND UPDATING SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER INFORMATION FOR FOOD STAMP ELIGIBILITY UNITS (EUs) in the FAMIS user guides.
Verify residency except in unusual cases (such as homeless EUs, some migrant farm worker EUs, or EUs newly arrived in the area). Verify residence, to the extent possible, in conjunction with verification of other information such as identity. If residency cannot be verified in conjunction with other verification, make reference/collateral contact (CC or TC); or use other readily available documentary evidence (HC).
Acceptable verification includes, but is not limited to the following:
Record a comment regarding when the verification was received and any other information on the Eligibility Unit Member Role (FM3Z) screen.
The identity of the person making application shall be verified. When an authorized representative applies on behalf of an EU, verify the identity of both the authorized representative and the head of EU. Verify identity using electronic resources and readily available documents. If hard copy documentary verification is unavailable, make a reference/collateral contact (CC or TC).
Acceptable hard copy documentary verification (HC) includes, but is not limited to the following:
NOTE: Puerto Rican birth certificates issued prior to October 1, 2010 cannot be used to verify an EU member’s identity.
If you go to the waiting room and say the applicant's name and s/he responds, this is not verification of identity.
Identity verification is recorded on the Application Detail (FM13) screen. Record a comment regarding when the verification was received and any other information on the Eligibility Unit Member Role (FM3Z) screen regarding how identity is verified.
Disability is considered verified if the disabled EU member is:
EXAMPLE: Public School Retirement System (PSRS) disability benefits are considered from a government agency, but the disability criteria for PSRS does not meet the disability criteria as defined by SSA. Therefore this is not a disabled EU member for the Food Stamp Program.
NOTE: An individual determined ineligible for SSI due to excessive income is not considered disabled, even if the individual has a statement from the Social Security Administration stating that s/he is medically eligible.
When an EU member claims they are unable to work due to a temporary disability and the disability is not obvious to the worker, request a doctor's statement to verify the disability. Enter the appropriate work assessment code for the individual on the Work Assessment (FMMS) screen, but do not show the individual as disabled on the Disabled (FMMX) screen.
Enter the appropriate verification code and record any comments on the DISABLED (FMMX) screen in FAMIS. If the disability is tied to a particular payment paid only to those who are totally disabled (SSA disability, SSI, etc.) verification of the income is enough to verify the disability. Some income types are received by individuals who are not 100% disabled (VA payments not for a total disability, SSA retirement, etc.) and verification of the type of income or the disability must be provided. Enter the appropriate code once the verification is received.
NOTE: Disabled EU members must be coded as disabled, have a valid disability reason for food stamps, and the disability must be verified on the Disabled (FMMX) screen before FAMIS will recognize the person as being disabled. Valid disability verification codes are hard copy (HC), telephone call (TC), and collateral contact (CC). If an EU member claims a disability but verification of the disability is not entered, the application does not pend when disability is the only factor not verified. The application is processed with no verification of disability. FAMIS treats the unverified disability as no disability.
Verification of the EU's legal obligation to pay child support, the amount of the obligation, and the monthly amount of child support the EU actually pays is required.
Whenever possible, obtain information regarding the EU's legal obligation and actual payments from Child Support Enforcement or check the Select Interface (FMKO) screen in FAMIS as follows:
Or to use the menus take the following action:
When the child support information is not available on the Child Support Enforcement screens acceptable hard copy documentary verification (HC) to verify includes, but are not limited to the following:
If the EU is unable to provide hard copy documentary verification of child support expense, call or contact (TC, CC) the local child support collection agency in an effort to verify the expense.
Verify the legal obligation, the amount of the legal obligation and the actual amount of child support paid. Enter the legal obligation in the Mth Oblg Amount field and the actual amount of child support paid in the Mth Paid Amount field on the Court Ordered Expense (FMXL) screen. The EU's application is not pended over 30 days or denied because they fail to provide child support expense verification. If the child support expense cannot be verified, the eligibility determination is completed without allowing the child support deduction. When the controlled flow is complete and there is no other outstanding verification, FAMIS completes the eligibility determination at the end of 30 days and does not allow the child support expense. Refer to 1115.035.20 Child Support Deduction for further instructions/policy.
For EU members who are subject to the work requirement for Able Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWDs) and are meeting that requirement by working, combining work and participation in a work program, or by participating in a work program, verify the number of hours worked or participated.
Work is defined as paid employment, benefits in lieu of pay (i.e. working in exchange for board), unpaid work, or any combination of the aforementioned totaling 80 hours per month (an average of 20 hours per week).
Follow current policy for verifying income, hours, and rate of pay to project hours worked during the certification period. Examples of verification include:
The hours worked per week must be included in the verification. If the individual is self-employed (i.e. cleaning houses) the statement provided must include the hours worked.
Enter the appropriate verification code and record any comments on the Training/Work Requirements (FMMR) screen in FAMIS.
Prior to certification, verify any questionable information. Questionable information would be information provided by the EU that is inconsistent with other information available.
Examples of questionable information are as follows:
Refer to 1102.005.25 Inconsistent Information for specific instructions for acceptable verification and recording comments.
During the application process, run an IMES on each EU member age 18 and over and on EU members under age 18 who are not attending school or who are emancipated whether or not in school. Use the information on the IMES to review past and present employment history with the EU during the interactive interview. When an EU member has consistently been employed in the past and is not currently employed, discuss that history with the applicant and ask whether or not the individual is currently employed or plans to begin employment.
Record comments in FAMIS regarding IMES on the Eligibility Unit Member Role (EUMEMROL or FM3Z) screen in FAMIS.
Verify the information by IMES when an EU member receives Unemployment Compensation, Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) and Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA). Refer to Comments Chart for specific instructions for recording comments.
The application can be pended to verify questionable information regarding income showing on IMES even if client has claimed the income has recently ended and claims no income in the application month.
Verify EU composition only if it is questionable. Client statement (CS) is accepted as verification regarding EU composition and that the EU purchases and prepares food separately, unless questionable. If questionable, use collateral contact or request a written statement from the EU as verification of EU composition.
Record comments regarding who purchases and prepares meals together on the Application Detail (FM13) screen. Record any comments regarding EU composition on the Eligibility Member Role (EUMEMROL) screen.