Family Healthcare (FAMIS) Manual – Table of Contents

0905.012.35 Stepparent Cases (MAF)

IM-#26 March 23, 2007,  IM-46 May 13, 2005,  IM-54 June 03, 2004,  IM-65 June 4, 2002,  IM-218 December 13, 2001

When a family includes a stepparent who does not have a dependent child included in the assistance group, income of the stepparent must be considered to determine eligibility of their spouse (the parent). This is accomplished by either deeming the stepparent’s income or including the stepparent in the assistance group. Both methods should be explored to determine the parent’s eligibility. If neither method results in eligibility, exclude the stepparent’s needs and income (no deeming) to determine the child’s eligibility under MAF.

NOTE: While the stepparent may be included in the assistance group to determine if a parent is eligible, the stepparent is not eligible for benefits.

The deeming procedure is the same as that for Temporary Assistance cases. Refer to Section 0210.005.40. To deem income in stepparent cases, complete the following budget steps:

  1. Determine the stepparent’s gross income (total gross income less overhead expenses). NOTE: Income EXCLUSIONS applicable in determining total gross income of an MAF claimant also apply in determining a stepparent’s total gross income.
  2. Subtract the $90 standard work expense from gross earned income.
  3. Add unearned income to the remaining earned income and subtract the following.
    1. An amount equal to the 1996 AFDC full need standard (Temporary Assistance Consolidated Standard Expense) for the stepparent and any other individuals living in the home, whose needs are not considered, and who are claimed or could be claimed by the step-parent as dependents for purposes of federal income tax liability.
    2. Amounts actually paid by the stepparent to individuals not living in the home but who are claimed or could be claimed as dependents for federal income tax purposes.
    3. Court ordered alimony or child support paid for individuals not living in the household.
  4. Include remaining stepparent income as unearned income budgets for the 185 percent of need gross income eligibility limit test, full need standard (Temporary Assistance Consolidated Standard Expense) test and net income limit (TA maximum grant amount)test.

NOTE: Verification of the stepparent’s income is necessary to establish the parent’s MAF eligibility. If the stepparent refuses to supply needed information, reject or close the parent and determine the children’s eligibility with the stepparent’s needs and income excluded.

EXAMPLE 1: Mrs. Smith has two children for whom she is applying for MAF. Her husband, Mr. Smith (the stepparent), is employed and earns $1000 per month. Mr. Smith has a child who lives with his mother. Mrs. Smith and her two children have no income. Mr. Smith pays court-ordered child support for his child of $300 per month. The computation is as follows:

$1000 – $90 = $910
$910 – $393 (full need standard for one person)= $517
$517 – $300 (child support) = $217
$217 is the stepparent’s income to count.

Since $217 is less than $1565 (185 percent of the need standard for the assistance group), the family meets the gross income limit test.

Since $217 is less than $846 , the family meets the full need standard income limit test.

In determining need and eligibility on net income, subtract $217 from $292. Since $217 is less than $292 Mrs. Smith and her two children are eligible for MAF.

EXAMPLE 2: Mrs. A. applies for MAF for herself and two children by a previous marriage. She is unemployed and receives child support of $200 total per month for these children ($100 per month for each child). Her current spouse is employed earning $1000per month. He pays child support of $300 to a child from a previous marriage.

Step #1: Assistance group consists of Mrs. A. and her two children. Deemed stepparent income of $217 (Gross income of $1000 minus $90 standard work expense, 1996 AFDC full need standard for one person of $393, and $300 in child support paid) and $150 child support income ($200 child support minus $50 child support disregard) equals total net income of $367, which exceeds the $292 MAF net income limit for three persons.

Step #2: Assistance group consists of Mrs. A, her two children and stepparent. Mr. A’s income of $1000 minus $90 standard work expense and the child support income of $150 ($200 child support minus $50 child support disregard) equals $1060, which exceeds the $342 MAF net income limit for a four person assistance group.

Step #3: Since Mrs. A. is ineligible for MAF using both budget procedures, complete an MAF budget excluding the step-parent’s income and needs. Only the children are eligible for healthcare coverage. Mother will be shown as an included (Z loc) on the IMU5.

EXAMPLE 3: Mrs. B. applies for MAF for herself and one child by a previous marriage. She is employed earning $500 and receives no child support for the child. Her current spouse is unemployed and has no unearned income.

Step #1: Assistance group consists of Mrs. B. and her child. Since spouse has no income, there is no deemed stepparent income. When budgeting Mrs. B’s earnings of $500 and subtracting the $90 work expense standard, they are eligible on the full need standard test as $410 is less than $678. When budgeting Mrs. B’s earnings of $500, applying $30 and 1/3 disregard, and subtracting the $90 work expense standard, they are ineligible as the adjusted net income of $253.33 exceeds the net income limit of $234 for two persons.

Step #2: Complete a budget including the stepparent. The adjusted net income of $253.33 is compared to the eligibility limit of $292 for a three-person assistance group. Mrs. B. and the child now qualify for MAF. The stepparent is not eligible for coverage but will be shown as a Z loc on the IMU5.