CT: 17 Certification of Foster Children
|Effective Date: 07/12||Downloads: PDF Version||Revised Date: 10/16|
To ensure foster children at nutritional risk receive program benefits. A foster child is any child placed under the care of a foster parent, group home, or residential group care facility through the Nevada Division of Child and Family Services (DCFS), Washoe County Social Services, or Clark County Social Services.
At the time of initial application for each new certification, official records of foster child placement shall be verified and documented. It is not required to verify child placement records at subsequent certification appointments within the same certification period.
A child under the care of a foster parent is different than a child under the care of a legal guardian. A foster child will have documentation from DCFS, Washoe County, or Clark County. Whereas guardianship requires court proceedings which results in legal custody being given to the guardian. A child under guardianship is not considered a foster child and would be considered as a member of his/her household in regards to eligibility.
A foster child shall be certified as eligible for the WIC Program according to eligibility criteria for age and residency. All other certification steps as outlined in Certification Policies shall be followed for foster children as done with all participants.
Foster children are covered by Medicaid through DCFS, Washoe County, or Clark County and therefore are adjunctively eligible which must be verified with current Medicaid documentation as done with other participant categories (see CT:5 Income Determination & Documentation, Adjunctive Eligibility).
A foster child is the legal responsibility of the State or Counties and shall be considered a family/household of one.
Biological siblings who are foster children in the same foster home shall be certified separate and each placed as a household of one, each receiving their own EBT card and benefits.
The income of the foster child shall be the payments made by DCFS, Washoe County, Clark County or money received from any outside source for foster care. Any income received for the care of the foster child shall be documented on the Rights & Responsibilities (R&R) Form as done with all participants regardless of adjunct eligibility.
If the client has entered foster care within the last six months or has moved from one foster care home to another foster care home in the previous six months the participant shall qualify for Foster Care Risk Code 903 (See Policy CT:7 Nutritional Assessment and Risk Assessment). A complete nutritional risk assessment shall be done at certification to determine other health, nutrition or referral needs as done with all participants.
If the foster child is later adopted, the child’s WIC eligibility shall change and then be based on the income of the adoptive family. If the child retains Medicaid after adoption, he/she would continue to be adjunctively eligible.
WIC MIS Data Entry & EBT Issuance
The foster child’s name shall be placed in the Household Information section in the WIC MIS as the EBT card will also be in the foster child’s name.
The Foster Child box under Household Information shall be checked.
The foster parent name shall be placed in the Demographics section under “parent name” to show they are the sponsor of the child. The parent shall not be listed as the household name and shall not be listed in JP Morgan as the EBT holder.
The clinic shall inform the foster parent that the EBT card moves with the foster child in the event of the child being placed into a new home.
The Adjunctively Eligible box in the MIS shall be checked along with choosing “Y” for the Medicaid box on the bottom of the Demographics Tab to show which date verified.
Transferring Foster Children to another Clinic/Agency
When custody has changed and previously issued benefits are redeemed or expired for the foster child, replacement benefits shall be given to the family with whom the child resides.
Clinic staff shall ensure new foster parent information is updated in the MIS to reflect the new address, phone #, and new foster parent name (in the Demographics section in the “Parent Name” fields).
If the EBT card does not move with the foster child:
- The first and primary option is to have the new foster parent request a new EBT card from JP Morgan by giving the child’s information (name and DOB). Clinic staff shall communicate to the foster parent the importance of updating any address changes.
- If the food package needs to be changed or the foster child needs their benefits immediately, the second option is appropriate which is to start a new family # and issue a new EBT card to issue benefits immediately.
In the event that a foster infant/child exists in another WIC case (i.e. infant/child has an ongoing WIC case with biological parents), do not transfer the entire case as this will transfer the entire household. Instead terminate the infant/child from the previous case and establish a new case under the foster infant/child.
Food Instrument Issuance
The foster parent will be interviewed during each issuance of benefits about the approximate length of stay for the foster child.
- A child who is placed in a home for a short duration will be issued the appropriate amount of benefits, i.e. one (1) month issuance.
- A child who is placed in a home indefinitely will be issued three (3) months of benefits, if appropriate.