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The 190th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 22: Verification of categorical and financial eligibility

Section 22. For the purpose of considering the need for service or assistance of an applicant or recipient of programs provided in accordance with chapters one hundred and seventeen, one hundred and eighteen, and one hundred and eighteen E, the department shall require the verification of all elements of categorical and financial eligibility. Such verification requirements, including home visits by workers assigned to recipients, shall be reasonable and in accordance with federal law and regulations, where applicable. Self-declarations by applicants or recipients of transitional aid to families with dependent children shall be signed under the penalties of perjury and, if possible, shall not be accepted as the sole verification of categorical and financial eligibility during eligibility evaluations and reviews.

The department shall determine what verification requirements can be reasonably met by third party affidavits and shall provide notification to recipients and applicants of the circumstances that third party affidavits may be used; provided, however, that all work participation forms shall be verified by a third party who shall sign the work participation form under the penalties of perjury. For the purposes of verification, the department may accept a payroll stub that contains an employer's federal employment identification number. The department shall establish reasonable procedures for the verification of continuing eligibility, including monthly reporting and retrospective budgeting where appropriate. Except for eligibility requirements which the department has determined to be subject to frequent variation, the department shall not terminate benefits to recipients for failure to provide reverification without a reasonable belief that the condition has changed for which reverification is requested. The department shall promulgate uniform rules and regulations designating which eligibility requirements are subject to frequent variation.