*** The Health Care Programs Manual (HCPM) has been replaced by the Minnesota Health Care Programs Eligibility Policy Manual (EPM) as of June 1, 2016. Please refer to the EPM for current health care program policy information. ***

Chapter 21 - Income Calculation (Community)

Effective:  October 1, 2011

21.50.65 - Child Support Deduction

Archived:  June 1, 2016 (Previous Versions)

Child Support Deduction

Court-ordered child support payments, made by obligors for the support of their children, may be deducted when calculating income for the MA program.

Conditions for Use - MA Method A for Families with Children.

Applying the Deduction - MA Method A for Families with Children.

Change in Financial Circumstances - MA Method A for Families with Children.

Conditions for Use - MA Method B.

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Condition for Use - MA Method A for Families with Children

A child support deduction is allowed when a person in the MA household pays court-ordered child support to another household.

Note:  Do not apply this deduction to MA adults without children.

Allow the deduction for the following types of payments:

l  Current cash payments.

l  Medical support.

l  Child care.

l  Arrearages.

This deduction is not available to women using a pregnant woman basis of eligibility or children under age two who are not eligible as automatic newborns, unless these groups exceed the applicable income standard and must spend down to 100% FPG.

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Applying the Deduction - MA Method A for Families with Children

Follow these rules when applying the child support deduction:

l  Allow the deduction only from the earned income or unearned income of the person who is obligated to pay the support.

Note:  Do not allow this deduction from the income of other household members.

l  The amount of the deduction is the amount the client actually pays for child support and arrears. Clients must have established a pattern of paying the amount that is deducted.

n  To determine whether there is a pattern, allow an average of the past three months of child support paid as a deduction for future months of the income certification period.

n  Allow the actual amounts paid for the retroactive and application months.

n  Do not allow a deduction for child support unless the client has established a pattern of paying the ordered support.

n  If the court order is too new to establish a payment history, allow the ordered amount in the budget. Determine the actual amount paid at the time of the next renewal or six-month income/asset review.

n  Document how you arrived at the amount to deduct in case notes.

l  Request verification of the amount actually paid if the reported amount is questionable.

Note:  A questionable amount may be when the support is paid through IV-D, or the person receiving the support also receives assistance through your agency, and the reported amounts differ.

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Change in Financial Circumstances - MA Method A for Families with Children

A person with a legal obligation to pay support whose financial circumstances change after the support order goes into effect must petition the court to modify the support order.

Note:  Adding a member to the household is not considered a change in circumstances.

l  Allow the deduction for support paid until the next 12-month renewal is due even if you determine a petition must be filed.

l  A person who does not petition to modify a support order by renewal when financial circumstances have changed loses the child support deduction until the month in which verification of filing a petition is received.

l  The client does not have to petition for a reduction in the order if the support ordered has decreased by the time of the renewal.

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Conditions for Use - Method B

There are no provisions for clients residing in the community to deduct child support payments.

Refer to MA Payment of Long-Term Care (LTC) Services for information about deducting court-ordered child support for clients using an LTC spenddown.

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