Current through Register Vol. 43, No. 22, June 2, 2021
Section 381.3 - Restrictions on money payments
Money payments shall be restricted under the following circumstances:(a) Restriction based on inability to handle cash. When the inability of an applicant for, or recipient of, ADC to handle cash has been demonstrated and when neither the granting of power of attorney by the recipient nor the appointment of a committee by the court is deemed practicable, payment of all or part of the grant shall be made by restricted payments. The recipient shall be sent written notice whenever a creditor requests a restricted payment for mismanagement on the basis of nonpayment of bills. Where payment is restricted, the reason for the decision to restrict shall be explained in the case record and the recipient shall be sent written notice of the restriction together with the reasons pertaining thereto. The recipient shall be sent written notice of any decision not to use a restricted payment. The local social services district shall initiate discussion concerning the client's reasons for nonpayment of bills and shall make renewed effort to help the client assume responsibility for paying his own bills.(b) When an applicant/recipient of ADC requests in writing that vendor or protective payment be made in instances where the budget deficit is greater than or equal to the charge for the goods or services rendered or greater than or equal to the maximum amounts set forth in section 352.29(e) of this Title in those cases where the requested vendor payment is for a heat and/or domestic energy bill.(c) Public assistance must be granted in cash; provided, however, that when the granting of cash may be deemed inappropriate by the social services district because of one of the following situations, public assistance may be granted in whole or in part by restricted payment:(1) an applicant or recipient has demonstrated an inability to manage funds;(2) less expensive or more easily controlled alternative methods of payment are available;(3) when vendor payments are made to landlords on behalf of individuals residing in public housing; or(4) an applicant or recipient requests restricted payments.(d) Restricted payments for rent. When a recipient of public assistance has failed to fully apply the shelter allowance to his rent, the social services official shall consider such failure as an indication of inability to handle cash and shall investigate the advisability of making restricted payment of the shelter allowance directly to the landlord or his designated agent. In determining whether such restricted payments shall be made, the following considerations shall apply:(1) Two months nonpayment of the shelter allowance or eviction notice for nonpayment of rent shall be considered rebuttable presumptive evidence of inability to handle cash. Examples of how this presumption may be rebutted include, but are not limited to: (i) where a recipient demonstrates that the family has experienced some emergency or extraordinary event for which it was appropriate for available funds to be spent;(ii) where a recipient demonstrates extraordinary expenses for necessary items not normally provided for by the public assistance grant or by the medical assistance program or for which payment is not readily available from some other source; or(iii) where a recipient demonstrates that the family has withheld the payment of rent as a reasonable exercise of consumer rights.(2) When a recipient is two months or more in rent arrears, and the landlord or his designated agent desires restricted payment for rent, the landlord or his designated agent must make such request in writing to the local social services official. Prior to making such written request, the landlord or his designated agent shall attempt to collect the overdue rent from the recipient and shall provide such evidence to the social services official when the written request is made.(3) Such payment shall not be made where a recipient's rent is in excess of the amount allowed as a shelter allowance and the recipient pays the full amount of such allowance but fails to pay part or all of the amount due above the allowance, nor shall such payments be made where the social services official has been withholding rent payments in accordance with the provisions of section 143-b of the Social Services Law.(4) The social services official shall advise the recipient whenever a landlord or his designated agent requests restricted rent payments.(5) The social services official shall advise the recipient of the decision to restrict rent by means of a timely and adequate notice detailing the reasons for the proposed action or shall advise the recipient of a decision not to restrict rent.(6) When a decision to make restricted payments for rent is made pursuant to this subdivision, the decision shall be entered in the case record and the reasons underlying the decision shall be fully documented.(e) Payments in closed cases.(1) Public assistance payments are to be made only to persons who are current recipients of public assistance and care on the date of payment, except as provided below: (i) payment must be made to former applicants for and recipients of ADC whose cases have been closed and who are owed ADC benefits for periods after July 1, 1985 if such benefits are owed solely because such persons are not current recipients of ADC and: (a) such benefits are: (1) requested by the former applicant or recipient or the appropriate social services district is otherwise informed that such payments are owed; and(2) not in dispute and are acknowledged as benefits owed to the former applicant or recipient by the social services district; or(b) such benefits have been established as owed to the former applicant or recipient as a result of a fair hearing requested pursuant to section 358-3.5 of this Title;(ii) payment must be made on behalf of closed public assistance cases when an obligation has been authorized prior to an applicant's or recipient's death or prior to the date of closing of a public assistance case if the social services district is required to pay the cost or unpaid balance of the obligation to a vendor. Payment on behalf of a closed public assistance case under this subparagraph must be by vendor payment; or(iii) payment must be made to former applicants for and recipients of public assistance whose cases have been closed for energy reconciliation payments, as authorized by section 352.5 of this Title, payments for net loss of cash income as authorized by section 352.7(m) of this Title, payments for extended supportive services as authorized by section 385.3(d) of this Title, replacement payments for lost or stolen checks as authorized by section 352.7(g)(1) of this Title or replacement payments for voided checks when such applicants or recipients are eligible for such payments.(2) Support pass-through payments, as authorized by section 352.15 of this Title, and burial payments, as authorized by sections 352.7(n) and 620.3(a) of this Title, may be made in closed cases.
N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. Tit. 18 § 381.3