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5.3 Determining the CCAP Family

ISSUE DATE: 07/2017

For information on what constitutes a family for the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP), see the definition of FAMILY in Chapter 2 (Glossary).


An adult family member who is not in an authorized activity may be temporarily absent for up to 60 days. People may remain in the CCAP family while temporarily absent under certain conditions. See Chapter 5.6 (CCAP Family - Temporary Absence).


An adult age 18 or older who meets the definition of family and is a full-time high school or post-secondary student may be considered a dependent member of the family if 50 percent or more of the adult student’s support is provided by the parents, stepparents, guardians, and their spouses or eligible relative caregivers and their spouses residing in the same family.

To include the adult student as a dependent in the family, the family must verify:

  • · The adult dependent’s student status.
  • · That the family provides 50 percent or more of the dependent student’s support.
  • · All other eligibility factors required for members of the CCAP family.
  • See Chapters 6.6.1 (Individuals with Exempt Earned Income), 7.3 (Verification – Initial Application), 7.6 (Verification – Eligibility Redetermination), 7.9 (Income Verification), and 16.27 (Exempt Earned Income Comparison Sheet).

    Agencies may want to set up criteria for determining the level of family support for adult students. Suggestions include determining household costs, for example, rent, utilities, and food. Divide the amount by the total number of family members. Assign a percent to each member, and then compare that to the adult student’s income. If the adult student is included in the family, the adult student’s earned and unearned income must be included in determining the household income, unless the adult student is under the age of 19 and has not earned a high school diploma or GED.


    When a minor parent(s) and his/her child(ren) are living with other relatives, and the minor parent(s) applys for child care assistance, “family” means only the minor parent(s) and their child(ren).


    CCAP does not require a child to be in the home of any parent for a certain percentage of time to be included in the CCAP household or receive child care assistance.

    When a child resides in multiple homes, all families can apply for child care assistance. Parenting time arrangements are an example of when a child resides in two homes. The child is considered to be temporarily absent from each home during the time the child is not in residence in that home. The child is included in the household size in all homes. An applicant/participant can only receive CCAP for a child when the child resides in the applicant’s/participant’s home. All cases would have to cooperate with child support enforcement because there is an absent parent in each case. Eligibility, income, copayment, and household size are determined separately for each case.

    When a child resides in more than one household and care is authorized to different providers on each case, do not authorize care so that absent days will be paid to the provider(s) not caring for the child.


    To receive child care assistance, the applicant must be the parent, step-parent, legal guardian, legal guardian’s spouse, eligible relative caregiver, or eligible relative caregiver’s spouse of the child. The relationship of the child to the applicant must be verified.

  • · Legal guardian means a person has been appointed or accepted as guardian by a court of jurisdiction or tribal law.
  • · Eligible relative caregiver means a person who is a caregiver of a child receiving a Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) grant or who is an MFIP participant and the caregiver of a child. After an eligible relative caregiver begins receiving child care assistance, status as an eligible relative caregiver continues through all child care assistance programs until there is a break in the eligible relative caregiver's eligibility for child care assistance.
  • Kinship caregivers (relative custodians) receiving Northstar Kinship Assistance must meet one of the legal guardian definitions above in order to receive child care assistance for the child. If the Kinship caregiver meets one of the legal guardian definitions above, the child is included in the family size. If the Kinship caregiver does not meet one of the legal guardian definitions above, the child is not included in the family size.

    There are other situations in which a non-parent caretaker may consider themselves a guardian but are not considered family by CCAP. For example:

  • · Foster parents are not considered legal guardians for CCAP purposes. Foster children are not included in the foster parent’s family size and are not eligible for CCAP payments.
  • · A person with a notarized Delegation of Power by Parent does not meet the definition of legal guardian.

    The Department of Human Services (DHS) has developed a series of case examples to assist you in determining the CCAP family. See Chapter 5.9 (CCAP Family Composition Examples).


    Minnesota Statutes 119B.011, Subd. 13

    Minnesota Rule 3400.0020 Subp. 20

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