Evidence to support a good cause claim may include the following:
- Incidents of domestic violence resulting in physical or emotional harm to the child, applicant, or Temporary Assistance (TA) participant. Types of Evidence:
- Court, medical, criminal, child protective services, social services, psychological, or law enforcement records. These records or statements should indicate that the noncustodial parent may inflict physical or emotional harm on the child, applicant, or TA participant as a result of cooperation.
- Medical records including the emotional health history and present emotional health of the child, applicant, or TA participant. These may be in the form of a written diagnosis or prognosis from a mental health professional indicating the emotional health of the child, applicant, or TA participant. These records should indicate that emotional harm to the child, applicant, or TA participant would result from cooperating.
- Medical and court records indicating that the noncustodial parent caused physical or emotional harm to the applicant or TA participant as a result of domestic violence. When documentation is unavailable, accept statements of the child, applicant, or TA participant. Make efforts to corroborate the statements by someone familiar with the situation.
- A child is conceived as a result of forcible rape or incest. Types of Evidence:
- Birth certificates
- Medical or law enforcement records indicating that the child was conceived as a result of forcible rape or incest. These records may include a written statement from the applicant or TA participant if formal documentation is not available.
- Adoption proceedings pending. Types of Evidence:
- Court documents or other records to indicate that legal adoption proceedings are pending. These records may include written statements from staff of a public/private adoption agency.
- Counseling regarding relinquishment. Types of Evidence:
- Written statements from public or private social services agencies stating that the applicant or TA participant is being assisted to resolve the issue of whether to keep the child or relinquish the child for adoption. The discussions may not have gone on for more than three months.
- All above causes except emotional harm. Types of Evidence:
- Sworn statements from individuals other than the applicant or TA participant with knowledge of the circumstances on which the good cause claim is based. A statement given under oath to a notary public is the most common and most available type of sworn statement.
In determining emotional harm, if the applicant or TA participant needs a mental evaluation to prove or disprove emotional harm, the State should pay for it. This payment is made in the same method as an examination to determine incapacity. The evaluation is valid for two years unless the mental health professional or the eligibility specialist determines that another evaluation is needed.
Situations that may require additional evidence before the eligibility specialist can make a good cause determination include:
- evidence provided by the applicant or TA participant does not provide sufficient basis for making a good cause determination. The eligibility specialist must request that he/she provide additional evidence or information needed to make the determination. Assist the applicant or TA participant in obtaining additional information as necessary. When investigating a good cause claim and the applicant or TA participant has been identified as a victim of domestic violence, DO NOT CONTACT THE NONCUSTODIAL PARENT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.
- the good cause claim does not involve domestic violence, DO NOT CONTACT THE NONCUSTODIAL PARENT unless the contact is absolutely necessary. If it is necessary to contact the noncustodial parent, notify the applicant or TA participant BEFORE MAKING CONTACT, and provide the applicant or TA participant the choice to:
- Present additional evidence or information to avoid contact with the noncustodial parent
- Withdraw the application for assistance rather than have the noncustodial parent contacted; or
- Have the good cause claim denied