Revision 18-1; Effective March 1, 2018

 

This guide gives documentation expectations and suggested sources for obtaining information that have proven to result in quality, accurate cases. This document is comprehensive, but not all-inclusive and is subject to change. When supervisor approval is suggested, written or documented, verbal contact is acceptable.

Casework Hints: Hints are good, proven casework practices.

State/Medicaid Eligibility Specialist Judgment Call: Case record documentation based on eligibility specialist judgment or knowledge is an option, but is not a requirement.

Case Record Documentation: The Case Record Documentation column in the chart below includes information entered via Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) data entry screens. Use case comments only as needed for information not covered by TIERS data entry or to clarify TIERS entries.

Verification and Sources: Each bullet in the Verification and Sources column is an acceptable source of verification unless otherwise stated. Remember, documents the specialist receives or generates in the local office must be sent for imaging in order for them to become part of the case record.

Electronic Data Verifications: Staff must attempt to verify eligibility criteria using information from electronic sources. Staff may not request additional information or documentation from individuals unless such information is not available electronically or the information obtained electronically is not consistent with the information on the application.

 

Element Policy Section Case Record Documentation Verification and Sources

General Acceptable
Documentation

Documentation must be sufficient to support the eligibility determination and give enough detail that someone not familiar with the case will understand computations and eligibility decisions.

Client Statement:

When selecting "client statement" as a verification source, the information must be on the application/renewal form, imaged documents or telephone/in person contact documentation and must be documented in case comments.

Third-Party Contacts by Telephone or In Person (including client and authorized representative [AR] contacts):

Telephone

Document the following:

  • Telephone number called
  • Person(s) contacted, including title (authority to release information being requested)
  • Date of call
  • Reported information, including dates, values and/or balances, descriptions, and source(s) the responder references

In Person

Document the following:

  • Date
  • Reported information, including dates, values and/or balances, descriptions, and source(s) the responder references

Other Acceptable:

Document in case comments the source used to verify the element if there is no field to enter information on the individual TIERS Logical Unit of Work (LUW) page.

Note: Other forms of verification may be acceptable with proper, complete documentation and program approval. For example, use of Kelly Blue Book, savings bond verification, etc.

Blanks on Most Recent Application/Review:

Documentation must address how items left blank on the most recent application or review are cleared.

Note: If an application has only client identifying information and a valid signature, telephone contact may be needed to get an explanation of the incomplete items. It is not sufficient to assume a client has no income or resources or that none of the questions apply and to request only a State Online Query (SOLQ) inquiry.

Only one type of verification is required unless noted otherwise.

Example: If all required information is on the bank statement, there is no need to request Form H1239, Request for Verification of Bank Accounts.

Case Comments

Document the following in case comments:

  • Complete name and area (MEPD) of the person making the comments.
  • Any open tickets, including the ticket number, date of ticket and the reason for the ticket.
  • The reason for reopening the application, with an explanation of the new file date. If a denial was made in error or the previous worker did not clearly document the denial reason, then document the reason for denial. The reviewer (supervisor/worker III) must document the reason when approving the reopening of an application with a protected file date.
  • Explain the file date chosen if there are several dates stamped or written on the application form or if an incorrect file date was used. If email correspondence is received, image the email.
  • If eligibility cascades to an incorrect program, document the reason eligibility is denied for the correct program. (For example: Application for waiver Medicaid denied due to excess income, cascaded to TANF Level Family. Sent to Texas Works for disposal.)
  • The reason for using the override function.
  • When the second-party reviewer does not approve whatever is being reviewed, then the reviewer (supervisor/worker III) would need to document why it is not approved.
  • Enough detail to explain the use of a contingency processing method (CPM) when one is needed due to a defect or because the policy has not yet been programmed into TIERS. If the CPM gives instructions on specific information to include in the explanation, then document the information. Document the CPM number.
  • Resolutions to any discrepancies, questionable information or special situations for any eligibility element.
  • The person’s response to clear discrepant Data Broker information, or a notation that the person disagrees with the information, as required by policy in Appendix IV, Data Broker.
  • If an application indicates the person requested interpreter services, document when the services were provided and how they were provided, as required by policy indicated on Form H1200, Application for Assistance — Your Texas Benefits. Document the name of the interpreter.
  • Any contact made with the applicant/recipient or his authorized representative, including the date of the call, the name of the person contacted, that person’s relationship to the applicant/recipient and authority to release information, and the phone number called.
  • Document the reasons for delays in processing an application and the eligibility specialist’s actions, as explained in Section B-6420, Missing Information Due Dates, specifically in the subsection titled “Delay in Certification.”
 

SOLQ/WTPY

Use and Documentation

SOLQ/Wire Third-Party Query (WTPY) can verify several things regarding an applicant’s/recipient’s eligibility and co-payment. Examples:

  • Name on Social Security Administration (SSA) record
  • Date of birth (DOB)
  • Citizenship
  • Medicare Parts A, B, C and D
  • Social Security amounts
  • Dual entitlement to Medicare and Medicaid

This list is not all-inclusive.

Use SOLQ as the primary verification tool when possible. To comply with SSA safeguarding requirements, do not print (and/or send for imaging) or copy and paste SOLQ data directly into case comments. In case comments, document the date or dates SOLQ was viewed.

If SOLQ does not provide all information needed, request a WTPY. To comply with SSA safeguarding requirements, do not print (and/or send for imaging) or copy and paste WTPY data directly into case comments. In case comments, document the need for a WTPY, the WTPY request number, date viewed and information verified by WTPY rather than SOLQ.

SOLQ/WTPY

Record SOLQ/WTPY correctly on screens where using SOLQ/WTPY as a verification source. (Since SOLQ is the primary source of verification and TIERS treats SOLQ/WTPY as one verification source, document in case comments when WTPY was used instead of SOLQ.)

Streamlining Methods for Community-Based Applications

Use this procedure for community-based programs, including:

  • all cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) disregard programs, such as Pickle, Disabled Adult Child (DAC), and Widow/Widower;
  • all Medicare Savings Programs; and
  • the Community Attendant Services (CAS) program.

Do not use this procedure when a person is applying for or requesting a program transfer to:

  • an institution,
  • a Home and Community-based Services waiver,
  • Medicaid Buy-In, or
  • Medicaid Buy-In for Children.

This procedure is available online on the Office of Social Services (OSS) website for Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD). Look for the bulleted item State Processes under Policy on the left side of the webpage. The title of the document is Simplification for Community Based Programs.

Streamlining Methods for Redeterminations

B-8440

Apply the three options to redeterminations for both institutional cases and community-based cases.

 
Customized Redetermination Driver Flow (CRDF) CRDF can be used for MEPD redeterminationswhen the case is active and in ongoing mode and the packet received date is on or before the redetermination date. CRDF does not preclude the requirement for documentation and verification of eligibility elements.

Guardians and Other Agents

F-1231, B-3220, B-3300

If there is no guardian or power of attorney (POA), determine if there is any other fiduciary agent.

If there is no family, friends or attorney, Form H0003, Agreement to Release Your Facts, should be completed.

Note: When a guardianship exists, only that person can act on the individual's behalf to sign applications and review forms.

Obtain a copy of the guardianship or POA document.

Citizenship/Identity, Residence, Alien Status

D-3000, D-5000, D-8000

If Level 1 evidence of citizenship is not used, document the reason a more reliable source is not used.

If citizenship is verified by sources other than SOLQ:

  • Bureau of vital statistics (BVS) — Document the birth certificate number, as TIERS does not automatically retain the certificate number.
  • Birth certificate, naturalization papers or other sources used — Ensure the image is available in the portal. If viewing the original document, be sure to send a copy for imaging and return the original document to the individual.

Alien status needs to be verified through Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) in Data Broker.

Identity verification must also be documented. Copies of documents are acceptable if they are legible and not questionable.

Hint: Ensure copies of alien status cards are legible by adjusting the print quality on the copier.

See Appendix V, Levels of Evidence of Citizenship and Acceptable Evidence of Identity Reference Guide, for acceptable documentation.

If citizenship or alien status verification is the only information that is not provided, do not delay certification or deny the application. Form TF0001, Notice of Case Action, informs the applicant that citizenship or alien status verification will be required within 95 days and lists the name of each individual who must provide citizenship or alien status verification.

Excess Income or Resources

Hint: The notification of denial should explain that denial is based on applicant/recipient declaration. Document the name and type of contact, date, time and any additional comments to substantiate the decision.

Excess Resources:

  • If excess resources can be designated as burial funds, allow the person the opportunity to do so. See Section F-4227, Burial Funds.
  • If a person is determined ineligible because of excess funds in a joint account, allow the person an opportunity to disprove the presumed ownership of all or part of the funds. The person must also be allowed to disprove ownership of joint accounts that do not currently affect eligibility, but may in the future. See Section F-4121, Joint Bank Accounts.

Excess Income:

See the following:

  • Section G-6200, Special Income Limit for the Eligibility Budget
  • Section F-6800, Qualified Income Trust (QIT)
  • Appendix XXXVI, Qualified Income Trusts (QITs) and Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD) Information
  • Section B-2500, Explaining Policy vs. Giving Advice
Hint: If denial is based on applicant/recipient declaration, both the notification of denial and case comments should include the name and type of contact, date and any additional comments to substantiate the decision.
 

Third-Party Resources

D-7000

Ensure that the TPR LUW is completed fully and accurately to ensure correct information is submitted to Provider Claims.

State/MEPD Specialist Judgment Call: Assignability of the policy may be pursued on a follow-up basis if it appears reasonable that the policy is assignable.

Casework Hints:

  • Check bank drafts for premiums for third-party resource (TPR) policies.
  • Check employment history/retirement income for possible TPRs.

Verify the names, addresses and policy numbers of insurance policies (assignability).

Sources for verifying insurance policies:

  • Copy of policy
  • Form H1253, Verification of Health Insurance Policy
  • Copy of insurance card
Verify the amount of the premium and obtain proof that premiums are being paid and that the policy is in force.

Copies of canceled checks are very good proof of payment of an insurance premium.

Incurred Medical Expenses

Chapter H,
Co-Payment

Incurred medical expenses (IMEs) should be properly determined (co-payment issue).

  • Is the IME being paid by the applicant/recipient?
  • Do not allow an IME deduction if there is no proof that the applicant/recipient paid the insurance premium and/or incurred other medical expenses.
  • If someone else has been paying the insurance premium and/or medical expenses and the applicant/recipient clearly plans to make the payment, schedule a special review to consider the IME deduction.

Obtain a completed, signed and dated Form H1263, Certification of Medical Necessity.

See Appendix XXXII, Incurred Medical Expenses (IME) Deductions for Medicare Rx Drugs, for information about IME treatment and processes.

 

Verify the names, addresses and policy numbers of insurance policies.

Verify the names and addresses of other medical providers the applicant/recipient may be paying, such as a dentist.

For what is the charge? Is it for an allowable medical expense? How many payments will be required for complete payoff? How much has been agreed to be paid? Is there any private health insurance that might pay the expenses? If there is no documentation field present in TIERS, use case comments to record this information.

Verify the name and address of any other source of payment. Copies of canceled checks are very good proof of payment of a medical bill.

Do not allow deductions for nonassignable health or nonassignable dental insurance policies. Assignable insurance policies must be reported on Form H1039, Medical Insurance Input, and sent to the Office of Inspector General (OIG), Third-Party Resources Unit.

Remember to set a special review date to monitor IMEs.

Transfer of Assets

Chapter I

Evaluate that the transfer took place. Document the when, what, how much was it worth as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day in the month of transfer, how much was received, and the “from(s)” and “to(s).”

Document the date of transfer.

Establish the look-back period. Were assets transferred within the look-back period?

Presume the transfer took place for Medicaid eligibility. Is there any value that is uncompensated?

Evaluate the transfer for exceptions. Document applicable exceptions as needed.

Document the value of the resource at the time of transfer and the amount of income being transferred.

Offer an opportunity for rebuttal.

Document the compensation received to offset the value transferred.

Document that an opportunity for rebuttal was offered and record the time frames observed. Were the rebuttal notices properly sent? If the individual attempts a rebuttal, document the evidence used during the rebuttal process.

Document the factors used to determine the validity of the rebuttal.

Document supervisor concurrence of the rebuttal decision.

Bank statements that are provided or requested need to be reviewed for possible transfers. If transfers are noted, additional bank statements and other verification can be requested to determine and verify whether additional transfers have occurred.

See Section I-3000, Exceptions to the Transfer of Assets.

See also:

Sources for verifying validity of a transfer:

  • Copies of documents transferring assets. (Documentation from viewing documents is acceptable if copies cannot be obtained. Document the reason a copy could not be obtained.)
  • Contact with companies or firms, such as a financial institution, that are knowledgeable of the transfer. (The contact must be documented using telephone contact documentation.)
  • Verify the fair market value according to handbook requirements for the asset transferred.
  • Can request up to 60 months of bank statements or other verification if a transfer has occurred.

Sources for verifying the amount of compensation offered:

  • If compensation is other than cash, document the formula used for determining the value of the tendered compensation.
  • Verification should include a copy of the sales document or agreement. If an oral agreement was made, obtain a written statement from the applicant/recipient and the person who received the transferred asset.
  • If more than one source of verification is required (for example, one to verify transfer and another to verify compensated value), document the additional sources and pertinent information in case comments.
Receipts used to verify compensation: Bank deposit slips or bank statements (for verification of the amount only).
Cash
F-4110
Cash is a countable resource. Accept the person's statement as to the amount of cash on hand. Address the amount as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the month. Accept the person’s statement as verification.

Bank Accounts

F-4120

Document the name of the financial institution, complete account number and account accessibility by the applicant/recipient.

Document the account balance as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the appropriate month(s).

Give consideration to encumbered funds.

Give consideration to the timing of consistent income deposits.

Is interest being paid on the account? If so, document the amount and frequency of payment and the source of verification. For information about the treatment of interest paid, see the Interest and Dividends section of this chart, as well as handbook sections regarding the treatment of interest in eligibility and co-payment budgets.

Identify the source of all deposits. All questionable deposits should be verified.

Identify withdrawals that reoccurred at least three times a month. Identify the payees of all bank drafts. Do not develop a transfer penalty when the total amount of all transfers per month is $200 or less, as outlined in Section I-3600, Administrative Procedures of Transfers of Nominal Amounts.

Document information in case comments on all deposits and withdrawals, as identified above. If these deposits and withdrawals are numerous, it may be advisable to document on a separate sheet the identity of each deposit and withdrawal (bank, date and amount). Be sure to send the completed sheet to be imaged.

Applications:

Obtain bank statements covering the month of application and the three prior months to substantiate financial flow/management and statements regarding potential transfers of assets. If transfers have occurred, request as many bank statements as needed (up to 60 months) to determine how far back the transfers may go.

Reviews:

Verify resources as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the month that Form H1200, Application for Assistance — Your Texas Benefits/Form H1200-A, Medical Assistance Only (MAO) Recertification, was received; the preceding two months; or any month up to the month the review is completed. Reminder: All resources must be verified as of 12:01 a.m. on the same month.

Verify an applicant's/recipient's bank account balance using one of the following methods:

  • Bank statements or a completed Form H1239, Request for Verification of Bank Accounts. Payment for completion of the form cannot be made by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).
  • Letter from the financial institution.
  • Telephone contact with an employee of the financial institution, using telephone contact documentation.
  • Pursue written follow-up if unable to obtain information by telephone call or if this information results in the applicant/recipient being ineligible.

The following three pieces of information must be in the case record:

  • Name of the financial institution
  • Account number(s)
  • Amount of the balance as of 12:01 a.m. for the appropriate month(s)

If the verification that the person provides does not meet the three criteria above, ask specifically for the information that is missing. For example, request a copy of the bank statement that will indicate (1) the name of the financial institution, (2) the account number, and (3) the balance as of 12:01 a.m. for [the appropriate] month(s).

Hint: For institutional cases, including waiver cases, bank statements are preferred over Form H1239 for verification purposes due to possible transfers and drafts.

Joint Bank Accounts

F-4121

Document the name of the financial institution and the complete account number.

Document the name of the person(s) with access to the account.

If disproving ownership, obtain a completed Form H1299, Request for Joint Bank Account Information, or a written statement by the applicant/recipient (or from the applicant's/recipient's authorized representative if not listed as an owner of the account) as to the applicant’s/recipient's ownership of the funds in the account. (An authorized representative’s statement can be accepted if no other statement is available and there is additional evidence to support the statement, such as deposits and canceled checks.)

Whose funds were used to establish the account?

Whose income was used to make subsequent deposits, and who made withdrawals?

Use case comments to document how and when ownership is disproved.

Obtain written statements from co-holders of the account verifying the applicant’s/recipient's statement. A third party's statement may be necessary if either party is mentally incompetent.

Obtain evidence that a change has been made to restrict the applicant's/recipient's accessibility to the account (funds) or to establish separate accounts.

If the account is not disproved, follow the guidelines for case record documentation for bank accounts.

If all monies belong to the applicant/recipient, no Form H1299 is required. Follow the guidelines for case record documentation for bank accounts.

Verify the name of the financial institution and account number.

Verify the name of the owner (or owners) of the account.

The applicant/recipient must be given the opportunity to disprove or prove ownership of part or all funds/income in the account, before denial.

Trusts

F-6100 through F-6900

Document the type of trust.

Is the trust revocable or irrevocable? Document whether the trust is revocable or irrevocable. If it is irrevocable, review the transfer of assets treatment in Section F-6500, Irrevocable Trusts; Section F-6713, Transfer of Assets; and Chapter I, Transfer of Assets.

Is the trust a qualifying income trust (QIT)? Are deposits being made to a trust account? Determine the source(s) of deposits to the account. Who is the beneficiary?

Document the value of the trust corpus.

Document the amount and frequency of income being produced by the trust, and the amount of the corpus and income available to the applicant/recipient.

Determine and document the countability of the corpus and income being produced.

Document the source of verification.

Send copies of trusts to regional legal staff for interpretation.

Sources for verifying trusts:

  • Copy of the trust agreement.
  • For special needs trusts, the source of the assets used to fund the trust.
  • Copy of the will, if the trust is a testamentary trust.
  • For wills, a copy of the Order Probating the Will or a copy of the Letters Testamentary issued when the will was probated. This is actually needed for any resource type where the individual may have inherited an interest in property, for example, a will granting a life estate or other interest in property.
  • Statement from the financial institution, trust management company or attorney.
  • Legal staff interpretation. (Contact with legal staff should occur via designated procedures.)
Note: If the trust is exempt, document the basis for the exemption.

Patient Trust Funds

F-4123

Document whether the applicant/recipient maintains a trust fund at the facility and the balance in the account as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of appropriate month(s).

Is interest being paid on the account? If so, document the amount and frequency of payment and the source of verification. For information about the treatment of interest paid, see the Interest and Dividends section of this chart.

If the applicant/recipient resided in another nursing facility and indicates that a trust fund was maintained at the previous facility, contact must be made with that facility to determine if the applicant/recipient owns a trust fund at that facility and to verify that funds have been transferred to the current facility.

Use one of the verification sources listed below:

  • Documented viewing of the facility's records
  • Copy of the statements provided by the facility
  • Contact with a knowledgeable representative at the facility, such as a telephone call to the facility bookkeeper, using telephone contact documentation

Stocks

F-4130

Document the following:

Name of the company, number of shares and type of shares. Document in case comments the:

  • number of shares,
  • type of shares, and
  • calculations of countable value.
Market value as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the appropriate month.

Source of verification.

 

Use one of the following sources for verifying the closing prices of stocks:

  • Newspaper
  • Statement from a brokerage firm
  • Research department of a local library
  • Documented contact with the issuing company, using telephone contact documentation

Use one of the following sources to verify ownership of stock:

  • Copies of stock certificates
  • Written statement from an authorized employee of the brokerage firm or issuing company
  • Documented contact with the brokerage firm or issuing company, using telephone contact documentation

Bonds

F-4140

Document the following:

Name of the company, type of bond and the serial number. The serial number is required to verify the face value. Document the serial number in case comments.

Market value as of 12:01 a.m. on the first day of the appropriate month.

Source of verification.

Note: There is no need to redetermine the value of a bond if there is evidence that the value will not change from year to year.

Verify ownership by examining the front of a bond.

Use one of the following sources for verifying the cash value of municipal, corporate and government bonds:

  • Newspaper (closing price on the last day of the month before the appropriate month[s])
  • Statement from an authorized employee of a savings or banking institution or a brokerage or securities firm
  • Research department of a local library


Use one of the following sources for verifying the cash value of U.S. savings bonds:

  • Table of redemption values for U.S. savings bonds (the table may be available at a savings or banking institution)
  • Statement from an authorized employee of a savings or banking institution
  • Copy of bond

Promissory Notes, Loans and Property Agreements

F-4150
(for resource treatment)

I-6200
(cross reference for transfer of assets)

Document the following:

Ownership of the note.

Accessibility by the applicant/recipient.

Whether the note is negotiable. If non-negotiable, why? Does a transfer of assets exist?

Whether the note is an excluded resource.

If the note is excluded, the reason for exclusion.

If the note is a countable resource, the current market value of the note.

Amount of income (interest) generated by the note.

Source of verification.

State/MEPD Specialist Judgment Call: If the appraisal value is $0, based on the reason given by the appraising entity, document your evaluation of the validity of the appraisal.

Note: The applicant/recipient must own the note. Notes that the applicant/recipient owes are not a resource.

Send copies of notes, loans and property agreements to legal for interpretation.

Use one of the following sources for verifying ownership of a promissory note, loan or property agreement:

  • Copy of the instrument (note, mortgage or agreement)
  • Statements from the purchaser and noteholder

Use one of the following sources for verifying negotiability of a promissory note, loan or property agreement:

  • Copy of the instrument that indicates whether it is negotiable
  • Statement from a bank or other financial institution, private investor, or real estate agent

Use one of the following sources for verifying the value of a promissory note, loan or property agreement:

  • Copy of the instrument
  • Amortization schedule

For a statement from a bank or other financial institution, private investor, or real estate agent (if the fair market value is being rebutted), the following information must be included:

  • Current principal owed
  • Appraised market value (if value is $0, document the reason)
  • Date the original instrument was signed
  • Interest rate
  • Payment schedule
Note: If the appraisal value is not likely to change, there is no need to reverify the value each year unless circumstances involving the resource change.

Home as an Excluded Resource

F-3000

Document the address or location description of the home.

Verify and document one of the following reasons for exclusion:

  • Principal place of residence
  • Spouse residing in home
  • Dependent relative residing in home
  • Home is placed for sale
  • Life estate/remainder interest (also see the Life Estates and Remainder Interests section in this chart)
  • Intent to return

The primary evidence of an applicant's/recipient's intent to return home is the applicant's/recipient's statement, as documented on a signed Form H1245, Statement of Intent to Return to Home, or a written statement from the applicant's/recipient's spouse or authorized representative.

Document the source of verification.

Remember, a home placed in an irrevocable trust loses its homestead exclusion. A home placed in a revocable trust loses its homestead exclusion, but if it is removed from the trust, it can once again be excluded as a homestead if it meets the exclusion reasons.

See Section F-3200, The Home and Resources in a Trust, through Section F-3300, The Home as a Countable Resource.

Verify the current residence address of the applicant/recipient and/or spouse (prior to nursing facility admission). Sources for verifying the exclusion are as follows:

For a spouse/dependent relative residing in the home:

Document the person’s statement establishing the residence as the spouse's/dependent relative's primary residence. Use case comments for documentation.

For intent to return:

Form H1245 or comparable written statement on intent to return to the described residence. Document receipt of the form in case comments.

For a home placed for sale:

  • Copy of the real estate listing agreement
  • Newspaper ad
  • Picture of a visible “for sale” sign on the property
  • Collateral contact with someone viewing a visible “for sale” sign on the property, using telephone contact documentation
Document these sources in case comments.

Review the status of a home placed for sale at each annual review. If a shorter time frame is referenced in the real estate listing agreement, set a special review to monitor at the specified time.

The Home as a Countable Resource

F-3300

Document the location and ownership of the homestead.

If the property does not meet exclusion requirements, determine the current equity value of the homestead or the applicant's/recipient's equity interest in the homestead.

Document in case comments the applicant's/recipient's ownership interest, if less than 100 percent, and the formula used for determining the countable equity value.

Document the source of verification.

See Section I-3000, Exceptions to the Transfer of Assets.

See Section F-3800, The Home and Transfer of Assets.

Use one of the following sources for verifying location, ownership and current market value of a home:

  • Tax statement with the current assessment, if using 100 percent evaluation
  • Copy of the appraisal from the local taxing authority or appraisal district
  • Statement from a local knowledgeable source (for example, a realtor)
  • Telephone contact with a previously listed source, using telephone contact documentation

Use one of the following sources for verifying the equity value of a home:

  • Copy of a lien, note or other outstanding debt
  • Statement from the mortgage company or a copy of the amortization schedule
  • Statement from the tax office (if taxes are in arrears)

In TIERS, “court record or other legal document” includes a copy of a lien, note or other outstanding debt, a statement from the mortgage company, or a copy of the amortization schedule.

Proceeds from Sale of Home or Other Real Property

F-3400, F-4260

Determine the type of resource sold and whether the recipient received the current market value. If the current market value was not received, follow transfer-of-resources policy.

Document the following:

Selling price of the home or other real property.

Gross amount received from and the expenses involved in the sale of the home/property. Itemize the expenses involved.

Whether the applicant/recipient is purchasing a replacement home and the time frame for excluding the proceeds from the sale of the original home. Set a special review to monitor.

Sources for verifying the sale and amount received include:

  • Copy of the deed
  • Real estate contract or agreement
  • Statement from the mortgage company or a copy of the amortization schedule
  • Statement from the tax office (if taxes are in arrears)
  • Copy of the appraisal from the local taxing authority or appraisal district
  • Statement from a local knowledgeable source (for example, a realtor)
  • Sales receipt or contract
  • Bank deposit slip or copy of check/form of payment


Sources for verifying expenses related to the sale of a resource include:

  • Bill for repairs or services
  • Copy of a lien or note that had to be paid to effect the sale (the copy should show the final settlement)

Home Equity

F-3600

Treatment of a homestead as a resource in Section F-3000, Home, continues, but it does not impact the determination of disqualification for vendor payment in an institution or denial of waiver services due to substantial home equity. Evaluation of the substantial home equity is required for institutional or waiver services at application and redetermination. Consider reverse mortgage and home equity loans when determining the equity value. Consider undue hardship.

Obtain verification of the home equity value, including a copy of the reverse mortgage or home equity loan, if applicable, for the case record. Thoroughly document in case comments the home equity value and information about the reverse mortgage or home equity loan, if applicable.

Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC)

F-3700

The entrance fee in a continuing care retirement community or life care community must be evaluated for consideration as a resource if certain criteria are met.

Document the following:

  • CCRC contract date
  • CCRC facility name
  • CCRC entry date
  • Is the resource accessible? (yes/no)
  • Does the contract specify that the fee be used to pay for care? (yes/no)
  • Is the person eligible for a refund upon termination of the contract or departure from the CCRC? (yes/no)
  • CCRC entrance fee value
  • Amount of entrance fee spent on care
  • Refundable amount

Obtain a copy of the CCRC contract.

Other Real Property

F-4210

Document the following:

Location and description of the property.

Ownership interest in the property.

Whether the property is excluded.

If the property is excluded, the reason for exclusion.

Current equity value of the applicant's/recipient's interest in the property. If the applicant's/recipient's ownership interest is less than 100 percent, document in case comments the percentage of ownership and the formula used for determining the value of the applicant’s/recipient’s interest.

Source of verification.

Sources for verification include:

  • Ownership interest in the property
  • Tax statement with the current assessment, if using 100 percent evaluation
  • Copy of the appraisal from the local taxing authority or appraisal district
  • Statement from a local knowledgeable source about the value (for example, a realtor)
  • Telephone contact with a previously listed source with knowledge of the property in the area, using telephone contact documentation
  • Copy of the deed or will to verify ownership

State/MEPD Specialist Judgment Call: If the property is inherited via descent and distribution, the recipient's statement on the degree of ownership may be used if no other documentation is available. Obtain the assistance of legal staff to determine the degree of ownership.

Sources for verifying the equity value of other real property are as follows:

  • Copy of a lien, note or other outstanding debt
  • Statement from the mortgage company or a copy of the amortization schedule
  • Statement from the tax office (if taxes are in arrears)
In TIERS, “court record or other legal document” includes a copy of a lien, note or other outstanding debt, a statement from the mortgage company, or a copy of the amortization schedule.

Life Estates and Remainder Interests

F-4212

Document the location of the life estate property.

Document whether the life estate is excluded as a resource, such as a home.

In TIERS, for a remainder interest, use life estate as the real property type and document this action in case comments.

If the resource is excludable, document the reason for exclusion.

If the resource is countable, document the current equity value.

See Appendix X, Life Estate and Remainder Interest Tables, for information about calculating life estate and remainder interest values.

Calculate the equity value and document in case comments the formula used for determining the value.

Document the source used to verify the value.

Note: Clearance of a life estate is required for subsequent reviews if the recipient is over the resource limit and older than when the value was initially determined.

Record whether the applicant/recipient chooses to rebut the value, the basis of the rebuttal, the value from a knowledgeable source used for the rebuttal, and the verification used to support the rebuttal.

For the purchase of a life estate, see Section I-6100, Purchase of a Life Estate.

See Section F-3800, The Home and Transfer of Assets.

 

Sources for verifying ownership of a life estate or remainder interest:

  • Copy of the deed.
  • Copy of the will, court record or other legal document showing that the applicant/recipient has been granted a life estate or remainder interest. If the terms of the will, court record or other legal document are difficult to understand, obtain the assistance of legal staff.

Sources for verifying the current market value of a life estate or remainder interest:

  • If a statement from a knowledgeable source is obtained, the MEPD formula for determining value is not necessary.
  • Current tax statement or assessment notice.
  • Statement from a local appraisal district office.
  • Statement from a realtor or an authorized employee of a savings or banking institution.

Sources for verifying the equity value of a life estate or remainder interest:

  • Copy of a lien, note or other outstanding debt
  • Statement from the mortgagee or a copy of the amortization schedule
  • Statement from the tax office (if taxes are in arrears)
  • Copies of bills for essential repairs
  • Copy of a bill for legal fees
  • For rebuttals, written verification from a knowledgeable source
Note: Life estates cannot be inherited via descent and distribution, as the life estate would end at death. One cannot inherit another person's life estate.

Life Settlement Contract

F-4225.1

For the life insurance policy, document the following:

  • Name of the life insurance company, the policy number and the face value
  • Date the life insurance policy was converted to a life settlement contract

For the life settlement contract, document the following:

  • Name of the life settlement company
  • Amount of proceeds from the life settlement contract
  • Irrevocable/revocable assignment
  • Name of the financial institution
  • Account number
  • Any allowable disbursements, as indicated in the account agreement
  • Amount of funds reserved for the death benefit

After certification, send an encrypted email to OESMEPDIC@hhsc.state.tx.us (listed as HHSC OES MEPD IC in the Outlook Global Address List) and document in case comments the date the email was sent.

Title the email "LIFE SETTLEMENT" in all caps.

In the body of the email, include all of the following:

  • Case name
  • Case number
  • Document Control Number (DCN) for the life settlement contract and supporting documentation
  • Disposition date
  • Result of the disposition (certified or denied)
  • Total proceeds of the life settlement contract

Sources of verification include:

  • Copy of a contract or written agreement from the life settlement company
  • Copy of the account agreement from the bank
  • Bank account statement indicating deposits and withdrawals
  • Written statement from the life insurance company indicating change of ownership

Life Insurance

F-4223

Document the following:

Name of the insurance company, the policy number and the face value.

Type of insurance coverage.

Whether or not the insurance is excluded as a resource.

If the insurance is excluded, the reason for exclusion.

Whether or not the insurance is a participating policy. If an applicant/recipient has a participating policy, determine and document whether the dividends are used to:

  • Purchase additional insurance — Treat as an additional life insurance policy.
  • Increase the value of existing insurance policy coverage — Verify whether the face value or cash value is increased.
  • Apply toward the payment of premiums — Disregard the dividends as income or resources.
  • Pay cash to the policyholders — Verify how often cash is paid, the amount of the payment and how the cash is used.

Balance of any dividend accumulation and interest.

For TIERS, if dividends are accumulating and are considered in eligibility, add the countable value of the dividends to the cash value of the policy and enter this total in the cash value section of the life insurance screen. Use case comments to document the actual value of the policy and the value of the dividends separately. Do not utilize the interest/dividend field on the life insurance screen.

If the insurance is a countable resource, the current cash value.

Source used to verify the value.

Casework Hints:

  • Check the bank drafts for life insurance premiums.
  • Check the insurance policy for an Application for Life Insurance page for indicators of other life insurance policies.

Sources of verification include:

  • Copy of the insurance policy
  • Completed Form H1238, Verification of Insurance Policies
  • Letter from the insurance company
  • Telephone contact with the insurance company's representative, using telephone contact documentation

Note: For term insurance, no further verification is necessary.

Note: On reviews, if a total face value equal to or less than $1,500 was previously verified and the policy is not participating, no further verification is needed.

Burial Spaces

F-4214

Document the name of the cemetery and the number of spaces.

All burial spaces are excluded regardless of designation. However, if the person acknowledges that the spaces are purchased as an investment, count the equity value.

Ownership of a burial plot in another state does not affect residency requirements or excludability.

If the burial spaces are not an investment, accept the person’s statement as verification.

If the burial spaces are an investment, sources for verifying the location and number of spaces include:

  • Applicant's/recipient's statement
  • Cemetery association
  • Funeral home (if associated with a particular cemetery or if it sells plots)
Review the purchase contract for the burial spaces.

Burial Funds

F-4227, F-4228, F-4229

Preneed Contracts

F-4160, F-4170

Document the type of resource being designated.

Document the total amount of assets being designated.

Document the amount of the asset that is excludable under the designated burial fund exclusion.

Unless the designated resource is a prepaid burial contract or a bank account styled "for burial," obtain a written statement from the applicant/recipient or his authorized representative designating the assets for burial. Verbal designation is acceptable when the applicant/recipient or authorized representative is designating life insurance insuring the applicant/recipient (or spouse) and the case is due. The recipient/authorized representative must follow up with a written statement, however, to continue the burial fund designation.

For preneed contracts, document:

  • the name of the funeral home or insurance company;
  • how the policy is funded (e.g., life insurance, cash);
  • whether the policy is revocable or irrevocable;
  • the face value of the contract and who owns it;
  • the cash value, if it is owned by the applicant/recipient;
  • the face value, if it is irrevocable or owned by someone else;
  • the reason for exclusion, if it is excluded; and
  • the source of verification.
May substitute another source of verification.

See Appendix XXXIV, Burial Resources, for information about calculating the countable amount of preneed.

Burial spaces can be excluded for anyone. However, only allow the designated burial fund exclusion for the person and the person’s spouse.

Use one of the following sources for verifying the designation of burial funds:

  • Form H1252, Designation of Burial Funds.
  • A written statement from the applicant/recipient or his authorized representative containing the same information requested on Form H1252.
  • For a life insurance designation, a verbal statement from the applicant/recipient or his authorized representative containing the same information requested on Form H1252 can be utilized to certify a case on a timely basis when a written statement or a completed Form H1252 is not received prior to the certification deadline. The case also must reflect a special review to follow up for the written statement of designation. If the written verification is not received by the due date, redetermine eligibility based on the resource not being designated.
  • Copy of the ownership papers or the financial institution's record showing the burial fund designation.

If the designated burial funds are in the form of an irrevocable trust or arrangement, obtain a copy of the burial trust or agreement document.

Note: Burial space items are not excludable on insurance-funded burial contracts. However, if the insurance-funded burial contract is irrevocable and fully paid, the value of the burial space item is disregarded when determining the amount of the irrevocable arrangement that reduces the burial fund designation.

Exception: If the irrevocable burial contract is owned by someone other than the applicant/recipient, do not make a deduction for the burial space items regardless of whether the contract is paid in full or not; reduce the burial fund designation by the face value of the contract.

For preneed contract verification, obtain one of the following:

  • Completed Form H1238-A, Verification of Pre-Need Information
  • Copy of the contract or a letter from the funeral home, or document verbal contact with a funeral home representative using telephone contact documentation
Although contact with a funeral home representative can be used to complete a case near the delinquency deadline, immediately follow up with verification by obtaining a copy of the contract or a letter from the funeral home.

For insurance-funded preneeds, verification, including irrevocable assignment, must come from the insurance company, not the funeral home.

Automobiles

F-4221

Document the year, make and model of all vehicles.

  • Exclude one vehicle regardless of value.
  • If the household is made up of more than one person and the additional member of the household requires an additional vehicle for transportation to and from work, exclude the additional vehicle for that member for work transportation.
  • If the household is made up of more than one person and there is an additional member of the household who requires handicap-accessible transportation, exclude an additional vehicle if the vehicle is specially equipped for that additional member of the household.
For all other vehicles, use the current market value.

If the applicant/recipient still owes on the vehicle, consider the current market value and equity value. If the equity value is less than the market value, document the formula used to determine the countable value. Indicate the source used to verify the current market value and equity value.

Verify the market value of a vehicle in any of the following situations:

  • The applicant's/recipient's statement is not reasonable.
  • The applicant/recipient owns more than one the vehicle.

Sources for verifying the value of a vehicle include:

  • Kelley Blue Book or NADA guidebook (trade-in wholesale value)
  • Hearst Corporation Black Book
  • Statement from an automobile dealer
  • Newspaper ads
  • Source knowledgeable about antique cars (in TIERS, use “other acceptable” and document in case comments)

Note: If the vehicle is being declared as "junk" (not running or fixable), a $0 default value may be assigned.

Land Resources

F-4213, E-3333

This includes:

Mineral Rights (oil, gas, etc.)

Surface Rights (grass, timber, etc.)

Document the following:

Location/address of the property (document in case comments).

Percentage of ownership interest in the land resources (document in case comments).

Applicant’s/recipient’s accessibility to the interest in the land resources.

Whether the land resources are excluded as a resource.

If the land resources are excluded, the reason for exclusion.

If the land resources are not excluded, the current equity value of the applicant's/recipient's interest in the land resources. Document in case comments the calculation of countable equity value.

Source of verification.

Notes:

  • Clearance of value is not required for subsequent reviews unless circumstances occur that may change the countability or value.
  • If the mineral rights are non-producing, assign a $100 "default value." Document in case comments the reason for the $100 default value.
  • If the default value negatively impacts eligibility, verify a specific value.

Sources for verifying the value of land resources:

  • Tax statement, if assessed.
  • Contact with a knowledgeable source in the community, using telephone contact documentation. (Sources include oil and gas producers, tax assessors/collectors, and petroleum lease agents/ landmen.)
  • Form H1242, Verification of Mineral Rights, completed by an authorized employee of the producing company.
  • Internal Revenue Service formula for assessing the value of mineral rights for inheritance purposes — 40 times the average monthly payout (to be used only when no other source is available). In TIERS, use “other acceptable” and document this information in case comments.

Sources to verify ownership include:

  • Copies of deeds, wills or leases. If the terms of the deeds, wills or leases are difficult to understand, obtain the assistance of legal staff.
  • Copy of royalty statement.
  • Division order, if the mineral rights are producing.
  • Statement from the applicant/recipient about the amount of interest (ownership).
  • Completed Form H1242.

Sources of Earned Income

E-3100

(includes royalties from book publications)

Document the following:

Gross earned income (if income fluctuates, use amounts for the previous six months or the number of months available).

Source of earnings.

Calculations used to determine average earned income, if appropriate.

Amount of the protected earned income allowance, if appropriate.

Source of verification.

Date of special review, if appropriate.

Amount of mandatory payroll deductions. In TIERS, identify these payroll deductions on the expenses screen using case comments.

Use one of the following sources for verifying the gross earned income for the immediately preceding six months (or less, depending on the review schedule):

  • Statement from the employer about wages (signed and dated)
  • Copies of check stubs (for the entire period if there is fluctuating earned income)
  • Written statement furnished by the ICF/IID provider, only if verification cannot be obtained from the employer
  • Completed and signed Form H1028, Employment Verification

In-kind Support and Maintenance (Non-Vendor Only) Situations

E-8000

Document the name of the person(s) who provided the support and maintenance and the type of in-kind benefit given to the applicant/recipient.

Document the amount of any payment or contribution made or received by the applicant/recipient.

If the applicant/recipient rebuts the presumed maximum value, document the countable value of the in-kind benefit and any calculations used to determine the countable value.

Verify the stated income is sufficient to provide for known living expenses.

If manipulating entries on the detail screens in order to calculate in-kind support and maintenance (ISM) correctly, thoroughly document the ISM details in case comments.

 

Sources of verification include:

  • Statement from the owner as to the current market rental value
  • Statements from the applicant/recipient and the head of household or authorized representative (use statement from Form H1200, Application for Assistance — Your Texas Benefits, if reasonable)
  • Copies of checks for payments made by the applicant/recipient
  • Copies of household bills (utilities, rent, etc.)

Farm Income

E-3130

Document the type of farm income, the applicant's/recipient's interest in the farm income, and the accessibility of the income to the applicant/recipient. If not fully owned by the applicant/recipient, document in case comments the applicant's/recipient's ownership interest.

Obtain the most recent income tax return, including Schedule F.

Note: Project income based on the countable income declared on the most recent income tax return; depreciation is not an allowable expense. A review should be scheduled for six months to determine if the farm income for the period has changed significantly. If not, the projected income from the tax return should be continued until the annual review. A special review may be scheduled to obtain the next income tax return and put the annual review cycle in line with the filing of the return.

In the absence of a recent (previous year) income tax return, use the amount of gross income and allowable expenses from the previous six months. Obtain this information from records provided by the applicant/recipient.

If the amount of income is expected to change, document in case comments the reason for the difference in income.

Document the amount of net countable income and the calculations used to arrive at countable income. See Section E-3120, Self-Employment, and Section E-6000, Self-Employment Income, for allowable expenses/deductions. Itemize these expenses/deductions and document them in case comments.

Document the source of verification.

Verify gross annual income and expenses, as appropriate.

If the farmland is not part of the applicant's/recipient's homestead, verify that the income is at least 6 percent of the equity value to ensure the farmland is exempt.

Note: If the farm qualifies as the applicant's/recipient's business, it can be excluded regardless of the value or the rate of return (see Section F-4300, Resources Essential to Self-Support).

Sources of verification include:

  • Income tax return
  • Receipts, payments and statements from other knowledgeable sources (for example, a county agent or a co-op)

Self-Employment Income

E-3120, E-6000

Document the following:

  • type of self-employment income;
  • most recent income tax return; and
  • amount of gross income and expenses from the previous months (if income tax return is not available or earnings are expected to be significantly different).

If staff is determining earnings using the applicant's/recipient's tax return, identify if the earnings are anticipated to change significantly. Continue to use the earnings determined from the income tax return for the following six months or until the next income tax return is filed. 

If staff is determining earnings using the applicant's/recipient's IRS Schedule C form, staff will be directed to the Schedule C page in TIERS to enter the applicable fields from the applicant's/recipient's IRS Schedule C form. TIERS will calculate the monthly expense amount automatically.

Note: An income tax return should not be used for projecting income for more than one year. If the applicant/recipient fails to file a timely tax return, projected income must be determined based on the income and expenses from the previous six months.

If the amount of income is expected to change, explain the reason. Document this information in case comments.

Document in case comments the amount of net countable income and the calculations used to arrive at countable income if not using a tax return, an IRS Schedule C form, or an IRS Schedule F form. 

Document the source of verification.

Set a six-month special review for variable earnings income.

Verify gross earnings and expenses for the past six months. (See Section E-5000, Variable Income, and Section E-6000, Self-Employment Income, regarding the averaging of earned income every six months. For treatment in the eligibility budget, see Section G-2200, Variable Income, and for treatment in the co-payment budget, see Section H-3400, How to Budget at Reviews. Note the income tax return exception.) 

  • Sources for verification include:
  • most recent year's income tax return;
  • IRS Schedule C, Form 1040- Profit or Loss from Business;
  • IRS Schedule F, Form 1040- Profit or Loss from Farming; and  
  • receipts maintained by the applicant/recipient

Note: Reconciliation must be done when a new tax return, an IRS Schedule C form, or an IRS Schedule F form is used for projecting the recipient's income or a change in the recipient's income is noted at the six-month review.

Hint: If the applicant/recipient cannot provide income records (income tax receipts, etc.), have the applicant/recipient provide a written self-declaration of projected income, or use Form H1049, Client's Statement of Self-Employment Income. Use that statement to project income for one month. Explain to the applicant/recipient the information needed to establish the applicant's/recipient's true income; set a one-month special review to obtain the necessary information. Use the information gathered at the special review to project the applicant’s/recipient's earnings for six months.

Social Security Benefits

E-4100

Document the gross benefit amount and, if appropriate, the supplemental medical insurance benefits (SMIB) premium amount.

If, according to SOLQ/WTPY, the difference between the RSDI gross and net benefit amounts is greater than the Medicare Part B premium, document the amount of and reason for the difference (e.g., overpayment, child support, etc.).

Document the claim number.

Document the source of verification.

For applications, verify gross benefits.

For reviews, if the recipient's statement agrees with the conversion amount and there is no indication that the RSDI benefit has changed, no further verification is needed.

Document in case comments the date SOLQ/WTPY was viewed.

Helpful Hint: Check for dual entitlement.

Verify the amount of Social Security benefits by one or more of the following methods:

  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's award notice (letter) from the SSA.
  • Obtain an SOLQ/WTPY.
  • Contact a representative of the Social Security Administration, using telephone contact documentation.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant’s/recipient's most recent benefit check or direct deposit slip. This method is least desirable, because the check/direct deposit slip may not show the gross benefit amount.
  • At review, use the conversion amount in the system of record if there is no indication that the RSDI benefit is different from the converted amount.

Railroad Retirement Benefits

E-4200

Document the gross benefit amount and, if appropriate, the SMIB premium amount.

In TIERS, document deductions on the expenses screen and utilize case comments to explain the deductions.

Check the deductions for potential life/health insurance. If a deduction is for health/life insurance, then pursue verifying and documenting the insurance policy. (See the Third-Party Resources and Life Insurance sections of this chart.)

Document the railroad retirement claim number.

Document the source of verification.

If a special review is needed for an annual cost-of-living increase (not automated) or an anticipated change in the health insurance premium, document the date of the special review.

Verification sources include:

  • Obtain a completed Form H1026, Verification of Railroad Retirement Benefits, to furnish information.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's award notice issued by the Railroad Retirement Board.
  • Contact a representative of the Railroad Retirement Board, using telephone contact documentation.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's most recent benefit check or direct deposit slip. This method is least desirable, because the check/direct deposit slip may not show the gross benefit amount. Send a follow-up letter to the payor.

Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Compensation and Pensions

E-4300

Document the gross benefit amount and, if appropriate, the amount of any VA allowance not considered in the eligibility and co-payment budgets (i.e., aid and attendance [A&A], housebound benefits, or reimbursements for unusual or continuing medical expenses).

In TIERS, if the pension is not full A&A, make two entries for VA income: one entry for the VA pension and the other entry for A&A.

Document the VA claim number.

Document the source of verification.

Note: If the recipient's VA compensation is capped at $90, there is no need to reverify it at the recipient's review or at the COLA review. There is no need to reverify old-law benefits at the review if the recipient or authorized representative indicates there has been no change.

If a special review is needed for an annual cost-of-living increase (not automated), document the date of the special review.

Verify VA benefits by one or more of the following methods:

  • Obtain a completed Form H1240, Request for Information from Bureau of Veterans Affairs and Client's Authorization.
  • Contact an appropriate VA representative, using telephone contact documentation.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's award notice issued by the VA.
  • View or obtain a copy of the most recent benefit check or direct deposit slip. This method is least desirable, because the check/direct deposit slip may not show whether the funds include aid and attendance, a housebound allowance, or reimbursements for unusual or continuing medical expenses. Send a follow-up letter to the payor.

Other Annuities, Pensions and Retirement Plans

E-4400

Document the source of payments.

Document the gross benefit amount and the amounts of any deductions from the gross benefit. In TIERS, document deductions on the expenses screen and utilize case comments to explain the deductions.

Check the deductions for potential life/health insurance. If a deduction is for health/life insurance, then pursue verifying and documenting the insurance policy. (See the Third-Party Resources and Life Insurance sections of this chart.)

If the source of payment is a civil service annuity, document the claim number.

Document tape matches. Additional verification is not needed if the tape matches agree with the recipient's statement.

Document the source of verification.

If a change in the health insurance premium or an increase in benefits is anticipated (e.g., a cost-of-living increase for civil service annuities or a potential raise in Teacher Retirement System [TRS] or Employee Retirement System [ERS] benefits), document the date of the special review.

See Section F-7000, Annuities.

 

Verify payments by one or more of the following methods:

  • Obtain a letter from the organization providing the payments.
  • Contact a representative of the organization, using telephone contact documentation.
  • Obtain a completed Form H1243, Verification of Civil Services Benefits, if the payments are from that source.
  • Obtain a completed Form H1297, Request for Information from Teacher Retirement System of Texas, if the payments are from that source.
  • Obtain a completed Form H1214, Request for Pension Information, for other types of pensions.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's award notice.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's most recent check or direct deposit slip. This method is least desirable, because the check/direct deposit slip may not show the gross benefit amount and/or deductions. Send a follow-up letter to the payor.
  • View tape matches, such as ERS or TRS.

Application for Other Benefits

D-6300

If the applicant/recipient enters a Medicaid nursing facility, the administrator of the facility must notify SSA to initiate an application for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). See Section H-6260, Facility Administrator Responsibilities.

Inquire about and document the following for potential entitlement to other benefits:

  • Military service time for applicant, spouse or child
  • Applicant's employment history
  • Applicant's previous marriages
Note: If there is any indication the applicant/recipient may be entitled to other benefits (e.g., VA benefits), the applicant/recipient must apply for the benefits and provide proof of application for and/or receipt of the benefits within 30 days of receiving written notice from HHSC. The caseworker must set a special review to check whether the applicant/recipient has made application to the VA or other benefit provider. See Section D-6300, Application for Other Benefits Requirement, for information about monitoring applications for and/or receipt of benefits.

Check with the facility administrator and system of record.

The applicant’s/recipient’s declaration is acceptable.

For complete policy regarding the verification and documentation of potential benefits, refer to the appropriate sections of this documentation guide and the MEPD Handbook.
 

Interest and Dividends

E-3330

Document the following:

Name of the financial institution, company or other source of interest or dividend income.

If the income is received from a financial institution, the account number.

If the income is received from an insurance company, the policy number.

The information used for projecting income, including the interest amount and dates paid (must be verified at each review subject to variable income review policy).

If the income is excludable, the reason for exclusion.

If the income is countable, any calculations used to arrive at an average amount.

Source of verification.

If a special review is needed, the date of the special review.

Sources of verification include:

  • Copies of bank statements
  • Written statement from the company or financial institution making the payments
  • Copies of dividend check stubs
  • Completed Form H1239, Request for Verification of Bank Accounts
  • Contact with a representative of the company or financial institution, using telephone contact documentation
  • Completed Form H1238, Verification of Insurance Policies, if received from an insurance company

Rents

E-3340

Document the type of rental income, the applicant's/recipient's interest in the rental income, and the accessibility of the income to the applicant/recipient. Document in case comments the applicant's/recipient's interest in the income.

Obtain the most recent year's income tax return (depreciation is not allowable) for persons who have established rent records.

Note: Income may be projected using the most recent year's income tax return, but a review is required at six months to determine if there has been a significant change in the applicant’s/recipient's income.

If not using the income tax return to project income, use the amount of gross income and expenses from the previous six months to project the income and expenses for the next six months.

If the amount of income is expected to change, document in case comments the reason for the difference in income.

Document the amount of net countable income and the calculations used to arrive at countable income. Document in case comments the types of expenses or deductions.

Document the source of verification.

If a special review is needed, document the date of the special review.

Sources for verification include:

  • Income tax return
  • Receipts, payments, bank deposit slips and canceled checks
  • Statements from the applicant/recipient and the renter

Royalties (from land resources)

E-3330

Document the following;

Name of the payor and the reason for payment.

Verification of the amounts and receipt dates used in the calculation of average income.

If the royalties are excludable, the reason for exclusion.

If the royalties are countable, the calculations used to arrive at an average amount.

Source of verification.

If a special review is needed, the date of the special review.

Use one of the following methods of verification:

  • Copies of check stubs.
  • Completed Form H1242, Verification of Mineral Rights. Ensure the reported payments reflect when royalties were received and not when they were earned.
  • Contact with a representative of the lease company (must be documented using telephone contact documentation). Automated telephone information is acceptable and a very good source of information, but it must be documented using telephone contact documentation.

Gifts, Inheritances, Support and Alimony

E-3320, E-3370

Cross reference: Chapter I, Transfer of Assets

 

Document the following:

Amount of the gift, support, alimony or inheritance.

Whether the income will be treated as a lump-sum payment, infrequent or irregular income, or regular and predictable income.

Source of the income.

Frequency the income is received.

Whether the income is expected to continue.

Verify a gift, an inheritance, or support and alimony payments by one or more of the following methods:

  • Obtain a statement from the person or organization providing the item. Use “other acceptable” in TIERS and document in case comments.
  • View or obtain copies of the court order, court records or will. If the terms and/or conditions of the agreement do not clearly identify income, obtain the assistance of legal staff.
  • Obtain a fair market value of gift items from a knowledgeable source or through newspaper advertisement.
  • Use other appropriate methods, depending on the nature of the item.

Notes and Mortgages

E-1750, E-3331, F-4150

Document the following:

Name of the person making the note payments and whether the income is accessible to the applicant/recipient. Document in case comments the name of the person making the note payments.

Amount of the note payment and the frequency of payments.

Whether or not the note is negotiable.

Whether or not payments are countable as income and, if so, the portion of the note payment that must be considered as income.

Source of verification.

If a special review is needed, the date of the special review.

See Section I-6200, Purchase of a Promissory Note, Loan or Mortgage.

Sources of verification include:

  • Amortization schedule.
  • Copy of contract.
  • Copy of note or mortgage document giving the terms of repayment. If the terms and/or conditions of the agreement do not clearly identify income, obtain the assistance of legal staff.
  • Statements from the applicant/recipient and the person who makes the payments. Use “purchaser/noteholder” in TIERS.
  • Contact with the bank, using telephone contact documentation.

Prizes and Awards

E-3360

Document in case comments the type of prize or award and the name of the awarding company.

Document on the expense screen or in case comments any legal or medical expenses involved in obtaining the award.

Document the value of the prize or award.

Verify prizes and awards by one or more of the following methods:

  • Obtain a copy of the applicant's/recipient's notice of the prize or award.
  • Contact a representative of the organization, using telephone contact documentation.
  • View or obtain a copy of the applicant’s/recipient's check.
  • Obtain estimates of the value if the prize or award is not cash.
  • Obtain proof of any legal or medical expenses involved in obtaining an award.

Medical Necessity (MN)/Level of Care (LOC) Determination for Applications

B-7420

Hospice

A-5200

In TIERS, the interface auto-populates MN/LOC information. If the interface is not responding, the caseworker can populate TIERS screens with information verified by the Texas Medicaid and Healthcare Partnership (TMHP) or by the nursing facility (NF) if the person is receiving Medicare. If a person has elected hospice care, Form 3071, Individual Election/Cancellation/Update, serves as verification of MN.

Use one of the following methods for verification:

  • Long-term Services and Supports (LTSS) summary screen in TIERS, populated by the interface
  • Telephone contact with TMHP or the NF, documenting the name of the person and the date and time of contact

Thirty-Consecutive Day-Stay Rule

G-6000, G-6200
, O-1100, O-5000

Document in case comments that an applicant/recipient has met the 30-consecutive-days requirement, including verification and sources.

If the person is eligible only because of the special income limit, the person must be admitted to a Medicaid-approved long-term care facility (Medicare-SNF, NF or ICF/IID) for the 30-consecutive-day time frame to begin.

Note: A full or regular Medicaid recipient who enters a Medicaid-approved long-term care facility does not have to meet the 30-consecutive-day time frame.

Verify the applicant's/recipient's stay using one of the following methods:

  • Contact with facility staff no sooner than the 31st day of the applicant's/recipient's stay, using telephone contact documentation
  • Proof of admission and/or discharge due to death via the LTSS summary screen interface
  • Contact with TMHP, using telephone contact documentation
  • Contact with providers, using telephone contact documentation
  • Contact with waiver staff, using telephone contact documentation

Special Review Requirement

B-8200, B-8430

Hint: This list is not all-inclusive. Special reviews are set for many reasons depending on the information needed.

Monitor eligibility at least every three months if the applicant’s/recipient's total countable income is within $10 of the income limit.

Monitor eligibility at least every three months if the applicant’s/recipient's countable resources are within $100 of the resources limit.

Special reviews are needed every six months for the following:

  • All IMEs
  • Variable income

Other situations requiring a special review include the following:

  • Potential benefits — Set a special review 30 days from the date of notice to apply for other benefits.
  • Known changes, such as an increase in income or TPR amount, loss of benefits, etc.

Enter in case comments the following information:

  • Date of the special review
  • Why a special review is being set
  • What information needs to be requested to complete the special review

The following information must be included in the case record documentation:

  • Whether a special review is needed
  • Specific details regarding the special review
  • Months and source of verification relevant to the special review
  • Date the special review will be conducted

All special reviews must be entered into TIERS.