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Minnesota Department of Human Services Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) Policy Manual
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9.1 Authorizing Child Care

ISSUE DATE: 10/2018

The amount of child care authorized must reflect the needs of the family and minimize out of pocket child care costs to the family. Include information in case notes describing how care is authorized.

Guidelines for authorizing child care

Rules for authorizing child care differ depending on the family’s authorized activities:

  • · For parents with approved Employment Plans, see Chapter 9.1.5 (Authorizing care – Employment Plans).
  • · For parents attending school, see Chapter 9.1.2 (Authorizing Care – Students).
  • · For employed parents, see Chapter 9.1.1 (Authorizing care – Employment).
  • · For self-employment parents, see Chapter 9.1.1.1 (Authorizing care – Self-employment).
  • · For parents who are job searching, see Chapter 9.1.4 (Authorizing care – Job search).
  • · For parents who are participating in a combination of activities, see Chapter 9.1.7 (Authorizing care – Combinations of activities).
  • Determining the number of hours to authorize

    Determine the schedule of care needed

    Do NOT pay for more than 120 hours of child care assistance per child every 2 weeks.

    The number of hours authorized for each child should be the number of hours that care is needed to support parental authorized activities, excluding the hours that the child does not need child care and the hours that the provider is not available. The child may not need child care due to the child being in school or the parent having another care arrangement.

    To determine the number of hours that care is needed for each child, the worker must examine each of these:

  • · The family’s authorized activity schedule
  • · The child’s school schedule
  • · The provider’s availability.
  • See Chapter 7.27 (Schedule verification – Employment and education) and Chapter 7.30 (Schedule information – Child’s school schedule).

    Custody schedules or parenting time arrangements

    If a child resides in multiple homes, hours can only be authorized based on the times the child is in the CCAP home. A child is considered temporarily absent from the CCAP parent’s home when the child is residing with the other parent. Care cannot be authorized and paid for a child during the times they are temporarily absent from the CCAP home, even though they are still included in the household size. This includes payment of absent days when the child is in the other parent’s custody. See Chapter 5.3 (Determining the CCAP Family) for information about how parenting time arrangements affect determination of the CCAP family. See “Communicating the number of authorized hours” below for information about communicating authorized hours when there are shared custody schedules.

    Two-parent families

    In a two-parent family where both parents are in an authorized activity and are able to care for the child, care can only be authorized during time periods when both parents are participating in authorized activities, including travel time and breaks/meals. During times when only one parent is participating in authorized activities, care is not needed because the other parent is available to care for the child.

    Determine the number of hours to cover the schedule of care

    Care must be authorized in full hour increments. If the amount of care needed is in increments of less than a full hour, round up to the full hour to obtain a daily total of hours to be authorized.

  • · Example: if care is needed for 5.5 hours per day, 5 days per week, the number of hours authorized per day should be rounded up to 6 hours.
  • - 6 hours per day times 5 days per week is 30 hours of care per week. 60 hours of care biweekly should be authorized.
  • Sessions of child care

    When authorizing care for school age children or preschool children who attend preschool or Head Start programs in addition to child care, if the amount of care needed is in increments of less than a full hour, round up the amount of care to the full hour for each separate session and add together to obtain a daily total of hours to be authorized.

  • · Example: Child needs the following care five days per week.
  • AM

    PM

    Care Authorized

    1.5 hours=2 hours

    1.5 hours=2 hours

    4 hours=40 hours biweekly rather than 30 hours biweekly

    15 minutes=1 hour

    1.5 hours=2 hours

    3 hours=30 hours biweekly rather than 20 hours biweekly

    Communicating the number of hours authorized and schedule of care

    The number of hours authorized per biweekly period is listed on the Service Authorization. Workers can include comments on the Service Authorization.

    Scheduled and authorized hours

    · For 12 Month Reporters, it is not necessary to communicate scheduled and authorized hour information. Workers can include a comment to let families know how their authorized hours were determined, but are not required to do so. Families and providers can determine when the authorized hours can be scheduled.

    · For Schedule Reporters, it is recommended that workers include a comment to let families and providers know what the scheduled and authorized hours are.

    Custody schedules or parenting time arrangements

    It is recommended that workers communicate to the parent when adjustments to a Service Authorization are made to reflect a parenting time or custody arrangement. The parent will need to communicate to their provider that care should not be billed on their child care assistance case, including absent days, when the child is in the other parent’s custody. It is recommended that workers add a comment to the family’s Service Authorization or if the information is communicated in person or over the phone, to case note the conversation.

    Legal authority

    Minnesota Statutes 119B.09
    Minnesota Statutes 119B.095
    Minnesota Rules 3400.0110

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