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New Jersey Department of Children and Families Policy Manual

 

Manual:

CP&P

Child Protection and Permanency

Effective Date:

Volume:

IV

Out of Home Placement

Chapter:

C

Adoption

4-9-2018

Subchapter:

8

Adoption Subsidy

Issuance:

500

Exceptions to Termination of Subsidy for Adoptees Ages 18 to 21

 

Purpose:                                                                              

 

This issuance establishes policy on the continuation of adoption subsidy for youth aged 18 to 21.

 

Authority:    

 

      N.J.S.A. 30:4C-47, Adoption Costs and Expenses Covered

      N.J.A.C.3A:23-1, Adoption Subsidy

      SEC.470. [42 U.S.C.670], Social Security Act, Part E

      P.L. 96-272, Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980

      P. L. 110-351, Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act (FCSIAA) of 2008

 

 

POLICY:

 

 

A)   Close Child's Subsidy Case at Age 18 Unless Exception Approved

 

When an adoptee turns 18, adoption subsidy benefits are terminated unless an exception is granted under this policy.

 

B)   Exception to Termination for Adoptees Ages 18 to 21

 

Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 3A:23-1.4(b), adoption subsidy shall be continued until an adoptee turns 21 if the child is and remains enrolled as a verified, full-time student of a secondary school or its equivalent.

 

 

C)   Home Schooling As A Secondary School Equivalents

 

The Division will consider Home Schooling programs to be secondary school equivalents for purposes of satisfying the requirements of this policy: upon presentation of evidence, using CP&P Form 14-221 and consistent with the procedures below, that such program is reasonably equivalent to a secondary school program in its scope, academic rigorousness and age appropriateness.

 

 

D)   Child Eligible But No Support From Adoptive Parent:

If the adopted child over age 18 remains subsidy eligible, but the adoptive parent(s) is not continuing to support him or her, the subsidy may, upon the approval of the Assistant Director of Adoption Operations, be paid directly to the adopted child.

 

Office of Adoption Operations staff notify the Office of Revenue Development since Federal adoption assistance cannot be claimed in these cases.

 

Federal Financial Participation                                      4-9-2018

 

In order to receive reimbursement (FFP) under Title IV-E/AA for a youth age 18 to 21, the adopted youth must qualify for Federal Title IV-E Adoption Assistance as follows:

 

      Both "applicable" and "non-applicable" youth may receive adoption assistance payments up to age 21 if the youth has a physical or mental/behavioral disability. See CP&P-IV-F-1-135, Definitions of Terms, for the definition of an "applicable" and "non applicable" youth; and

 

      Pursuant to the Federal legislation, Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (FCSIAA), beginning October 1, 2010, youth may receive adoption assistance payments up to age 21, if the adoption subsidy agreement was entered into after the youth turned a specified age, and he or she meets one of the following conditions, when he or she reaches age 18:

 

-     Completing secondary school (or equivalent);

 

-     Enrolled in post-secondary or vocational school;

 

-     Actively participating in a program or activity that promotes or removes barriers to employment;

 

-     Employed at least 80 hours a month; or

 

-     Determined incapable of any of the above due to a documented medical condition.

 

The "specified age" is 16 as of October 1, 2010. The age decreases every year. See chart at CP&P-IV-F-1-300, Applicable Child Age Eligibility Time Line. All youth must also meet other Federal Title IV-E/AA criteria. See CP&P-IV-F-1-300.

 

E)   Amount of Subsidy

 

A child for whom an exception is made to receive subsidy at age 18 to 21 continues to receive subsidy at his or her current rate.

 

Procedures:

 

A)   Processing Initial Exceptions Involving Continuing School Attendance                                                                                                                      1-15-2015

 

The CP&P Form 14-217, Adoption and KLG Subsidy Letter for Children Turning 18, is used to notify the family of an adoptive child who will be turning age 18 within the next two months, that

 

      The last subsidy payment will be received for the month the child turns age 18, unless the youth or family requests to continue the subsidy by:

                                          i.    providing documentation from the child's school district verifying that the child is enrolled in a secondary school or special education program, and specifying his or her expected graduation date.

                                        ii.    Completing and submitting CP&P Form 14-221, Statement of Continued Education for Adoption Subsidy Recipients, and any necessary supporting documentation. See B) below for additional procedures related to the Statement of Continued Education for Adoption Subsidy Recipients.

 

Documentation must be received before the end of the month in which the child turns age 18, or CP&P will suspend or terminate the subsidy.

 

      In situations where the child has a physical or mental/behavioral disability, documentation of that disability should be included with the submitted documentation.

 

The letter must be returned to the Office of Adoption Operations by the deadline date, within 45 days of the date of the letter, if the child is in school and subsidy is to continue beyond the child's 18th birthday.

 

If documentation is not received within the specified time frame, the Adoption Operations Subsidy Unit will automatically close the subsidy line and close the case. If the family subsequently provides the required documentation, the case may be reopened.

 

The submission of documentation alone does not entitle any person to the continuation of adoption subsidy. The Office of Adoption Operations must determine eligibility based on review of submitted documents.

 

B)   Review and Approval of CP&P Form 14-221, Statement of Continued Education for Adoption Subsidy Recipients

 

CP&P Form 14-221 is used to attest and document that a home schooling or GED preparation program, other than one provided through a licensed public or private school, is reasonably equivalent to a secondary school program, and being attended by the youth on a full time basis.. In addition to the attestation on the form itself, it must have attached documentation that demonstrates that the program is reasonably equivalent to a typical secondary school program in its scope, academic rigorousness, and age appropriateness.

 

Examples of appropriate documentation include, but are not limited to, written descriptions of the curriculum and pamphlets or brochures from commercial providers.

 

The determination that a program is a secondary school equivalent is made by the Office of Adoption Operations.

 

C)   Annual School Verification

 

By August 1st of each year, at the latest, send the CP&P Form 14-218, Annual Verification of Child's School Attendance - Adoption or KLG Subsidy Letter, to adoptive parents of children over age 18 receiving an adoption subsidy. This letter notifies the adoptive parent that he or she is required to provide verification within 45 days that his or her child is returning to school.

 

If the adoptive parent fails to provide confirmation of his or her child's continued schooling, stop the subsidy and close the case.

 

Other Forms                                                                       

 

      CP&P Form 14-184, Initial Agreement Between the New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency and Adoption Parents Regarding Subsidy Payments

 

      CP&P Form 14-188, Annual Notice Regarding Adoption Subsidy

 

      CP&P Form 14-217, Adoption and KLG Subsidy Letter for Children Turning 18

 

      CP&P Form 14-218, Annual Verification of Child's School Attendance - Adoption or KLG Subsidy Letter

 

      CP&P Form 14-221, Statement of Continued Education for Adoption Subsidy Recipients

 

Related Policy

 

      CP&P-IV-C-8-100, Adoption Subsidy Overview.