Children’s Income Disbursement System (KIDS)
In the event a child is placed in alternative care has an independent source of income (i.e., Social Security, SSI, VA, Railroad benefits, contributions from birth family, lump sum payments, inheritance, [excludes the child’s personal income] etc.) these funds must be applied toward the care of the child prior to authorizing payment from State or Federal funds. All income received by a child in the custody of the Children’s Division (CD) must be processed through the Children’s Services Income Disbursement System (KIDS). The checks shall be received by the Division of Finance and Administrative Services (DFAS) for deposit and disbursement in the KIDS account.
NOTE: Any child receiving Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA) funds or similar grants including a grant for tuition and books, and weekly need-based payments, does not have to deposit the unearned income in the KIDS account.
The intent of the KIDS account is to centralize all of a child’s outside income in order to increase agency efficiency and accountability in the receipt and disbursement of such funds. In addition, it decreases the accounting responsibilities at the county office level. The KIDS account is monitored by the Revenue Maximization Unit (RMU). The system provides the county office with all needed information regarding the status of a child’s KIDS account.
NOTE: A child who is still in CD custody and receiving support through OASDI must be made the payee when age eighteen (18) is reached, unless found incompetent by the Circuit Court.
NOTE: When a child becomes 16, the county will accumulate up to $999.00 in the KIDS Account to assist the child when released from CD custody. These funds will not be used to pay for expenses which previously had been paid from the KIDS Account. For the Title IV-E Eligible/Reimbursable child, the accumulated amount must never exceed $10,000.00 in order to remain reimbursable for Title IV-E.
Setting up a KIDS Account:
- An account is automatically set up upon entry of the first CS-KIDS-1 by DFAS. If income is received in the county office, the CS-KIDS-1 is completed by the County Office. One (1) copy is retained in the County Office business file and the other four (4) copies (with the income attached) are sent to DFAS at Post Office Box 3536, Jefferson City, Missouri 65103. This address is to be used for all entries into the KIDS account. The Division of Administrative Services returns the canary copy of the CS-KIDS-1 to the sending County Office as verification that the CS-KIDS-1 was deposited into KIDS.
- The CD Director shall be designated as payee for any independent source of benefits for children in the care and custody of CD. This is accomplished by the Eligibility Specialist completing all necessary forms. For example, the Eligibility Specialist completes all necessary forms as required by SSA, SSI, or VA and designates the CD Director as the designated payee. The Designee shall sign the application and add “for the Director of the Children’s Division.”
- Each Circuit Manager shall designate himself/herself or another employee with the responsibility for the completion of Form CS-KIDS-1 in the event money is received in the county office that should be entered into the KIDS account. (See the Children’s Division Forms Manual.)
Maintaining and Utilizing the KIDS Account:
- The system will automatically debit the KIDS account for maintenance payments and other expenses.
NOTE: RMU processes fund recoupments on active KIDS accounts for children who exceed or are close to exceeding their resource limit for SSI, Title IV-E, or Title XIX-FFP programs. RMU processes fund recoupments in order to reduce the children’s balances in the accounts so they remain eligible for these programs. The fund recoupment process takes money from the child’s account and refunds it to the state for services paid from CD program funds. Fund recoupments are processed for payments made from Alternative Care (AC), Residential Treatment (RT), and Children’s Treatment (CT).
- Once the child’s KIDS account has been established, the payer(s) (SSA, VA, etc.) shall be instructed to send the income directly to DFAS who will enter the funds into the KIDS account via the CS-KIDS-1. However, in the event the county office receives outside income for a child’s KIDS account, it shall be sent to DFAS.
The Circuit Manager is ultimately responsible for the receipt and deposit of any income received which is to be placed into the KIDS account. The Circuit Manager may designate another employee to perform the functions of the Circuit Manager in these procedures as long as that employee is not one listed above.
Cash Receipts: Any income received by the county office, must be registered on the CS-KIDS-1 and sent to DFAS for deposit into the KIDS account. The following should be on a daily basis as necessary:
- “For deposit only” is stamped on all checks or money orders received;
- The cash receipts are prepared via the CS-KIDS-1;
- The CS-KIDS-1 is provided to the Circuit Manager/Designee for review and approval;
- The Circuit Manager /Designee compares the CS-KIDS-1 with the money to be sent to DFAS to be deposited in the KIDS account; and
- The Circuit Manager /Designee signs the CS-KIDS-1 indicating that all documents agree. He/She then files the county office copy in the business file and submits the other four (4) copies of the CS-KIDS-1 to DFAS. (See the Children’s Division Forms Manual for further instructions on the CS-KIDS-1.)
- The Children’s Service Worker requests payment for additional expenses not covered by maintenance payments, following policy in the Child Welfare Manual. Back state debt always takes priority over additional expenditures for the child. The Children’s Service Worker should always contact RMU prior to requesting additional expenditures. If KIDS funds are available, they will be used. If KIDS funds are not available, alternative care funds will be used.
- Payment for special expenses will be made to the provider on one of the CSIPS payrolls using current CS-65 invoicing procedures.
- If the child has a source of income, but for any reason the income is not received during a given month, and there are insufficient funds in the KIDS account, payment for that month will be made from alternative care funds by the type of funding source for which the child is eligible (HDN or IV-E). When the income for that month is actually received, it will be deposited in the child’s KIDS account and used to pay maintenance/special expenses for subsequent months. When a child leaves alternative care, these funds may be used to pay expenses which should have been paid from the KIDS account, but were paid by CD.
- A copy of the CS-KIDS-1 shall be maintained in the business record and a copy of the CS-KIDS-2 shall be maintained in the business and child’s record for five (5) years.
- Each child for whose benefit funds have been received by the division and the guardian ad litem of such child shall be furnished annually with a statement listing all transactions involving the funds which have been deposited on the child’s behalf, to include each receipt and disbursement. This may be accomplished by printing the ZKID screen to show the most recent 12 months of KIDS Account activity.
- In order for the child to continue to receive SSI, Social Security requires that the account balance remains below $2,000.00. It will be necessary to identify needs the child may have that the excess balance may be used for. In consultation with the supervisor, the child’s placement provider and Family Support Team, it is necessary to decide what needs the child may have that are not otherwise being met.
Rules for Accessing KIDS Account Funds
KIDS Account funds must first be used for the beneficiary’s current maintenance. Maintenance costs include “costs incurred in obtaining food, shelter, clothing, medical care, and personal comfort items”. In addition to maintenance costs, it is important to note that any money accessed from a child’s KIDS Account may only be used for approvable items that will follow that child after the termination of his/her foster care episode. Approvable items are specifically for the recipient and in the recipient’s best interests. Examples of allowable expenditures incude:
- School supplies
- Medical treatment and education or job skills training;
- If related to a child’s disability, personal needs assistance
- Special equipment
- Therapy or rehabilitation
For items already purchased and in the event the Children’s Division reimburses the placement provider, please provide (along with the KIDS-2 form), the invoice or receipt for items purchased along with proof of purchase from the placement provider (i.e., cancelled check). If the vendor is to be paid directly, please submit the KIDS-2 form and an invoice from the vendor. The vendor will need to complete a Vendor Input Form. The vendor will be set up in SAM II.
Rules for Dedicated Account Funds
Money should be accessed for the benefit of the child and only for the following allowable expenses – Medical treatment and education or job skills training if related to the child’s impairment(s); personal needs assistance; special equipment; housing modification; and therapy or rehabilitation; or other items and services related to the child’s impairment(s) that the Social Security Administration determines to be appropriate.
Terminating an Individual Child’s KIDS Account:
- When a child leaves Alternative Care, the Children’s Service Worker shall contact RMU for the determination of prior expenses which should be paid from the KIDS account. RMU will determine prior expenses for five (5) years prior to the date the child left alternative care (see Section 516.120 RSMo). RMU will process prior expenses to be paid from the KIDS account through fund recoupments for payments made in behalf of the child from:
- Alternative Care (AC);
- Residential Treatment (RT); and
- Children’s Treatment (CT).
NOTE: If a child age 16 or over has a savings (as described on page 1 of this attachment) it will not be used to reimburse the state for back state debt.
- If the child is age 16 or over, staff will be advised of the amount of the child’s savings. At that time, staff should complete a CS-KIDS-2 for the person (payee) to whom money is to be released from the child’s KIDS account. This person(s) may be the child’s parent, guardian, adoptive parent or him/herself, if an emancipated minor. The following steps should be taken regarding the transfer of the savings (CD shall follow the instructions of the Juvenile Court when they differ from these instructions):
NOTE: If there is a KIDS account for which a payee cannot be identified, contact RMU.
- Transfer the savings to the child age 16 or over. Staff should always contact RMU prior to completing the CS-KIDS-2.
- SSI and OASDI: County Office staff shall advise a potential “representative payee” or emancipated minor to apply for SSI or OASDI at the local Social Security Office.
NOTE: Any SSI checks deposited in a KIDS account after a child leaves alternative care must be returned to the Social Security Administration (SSA). RMU will be responsible for returning these checks to SSA. Therefore, staff shall not enter a CS-KIDS-2 to disburse SSI income to a payee, when that income was deposited after the child left alternative care.
- VA: County office staff shall advise a potential payee or emancipated minor to apply with the appropriate VA office. It should be noted that VA benefits cease after a child’s adoption is finalized.
- If there are serious concerns regarding the disbursement of funds when a child age 16 or over leaves CD custody, contact the Juvenile Court to request direction. This should only occur when staff think returning these funds may not be in the best interest of the child or when the Court has previously requested involvement in the disposition of the child’s funds. RMU should be contacted prior to contacting the Juvenile Court.
- Child Support payments will continue to be deposited automatically into the KIDS account, after the child leaves alternative care, until the parental obligation is met. RMU will process child support deposits into closed KIDS accounts on an ongoing basis. This income will be credited toward prior state expenses. Staff shall not take any action to disburse Child Support money received after the child leaves Alternative Care.
After release of a child age 16 or over from CD custody, and if after a diligent search the Children’s Service Worker cannot locate or identify a person to whom funds should be released, the Children’s Service Worker shall contact RMU to request the funds remain in the KIDS account. Funds left in a child’s KIDS account will remain for up to five (5) years when CD cannot identify or locate the person to whom to release the funds. At the end of five (5) years, the funds, if not claimed, will be released to General Revenue.