Teen Parents: Your Legal Rights Under Welfare Reform

Teen Parents: Your Legal Rights Under Welfare Reform

You must be in school full-time or have graduated from school if you are under age 20 and pregnant or a parent. You must also meet special living arrangement rules if you are under age 18 years. You’ve kept the right to register your very own application for TAFDC advantages without your mother and father, even although you reside using them.

1. How can the school attendance rules work?

If you are under 20 you must be in high school, middle or elementary school OR a in a full-time GED (high school equivalency) program of at least 20 hours per week unless you have graduated. A week, you may be asked to do community service or other training as well if your GED program is less than 20 hours. This guideline doesn’t use if you should be within 60 times of switching age 20. You need to be at school or A ged system at minimum 75percent of that time (15 hours away from a 20 hour system) to qualify for TAFDC advantages. If you’d like assist getting into college, ask your DTA worker. The worker is meant to assist you find a program which help you receive care and pay for transportation costs to school and day care day. But, you simply can’t be sanctioned you) if you are not in school because of lack of child care or because of domestic or teen dating violence (like where your current or former boyfriend is stalking or has threatened.

2. Is there reasons that are good lack from college?

Yes. You could have good cause for absences as a result of not enough transport or kid care, inclement weather, a medical condition, an urgent situation or crisis you will need to focus on. You are absent more than 25% of the time, you will first lose about $92 of you TAFDC grant for 30 days if you do not have good cause and. After 1 month, you certainly will lose the entire TAFDC grant. Your SNAP/Food Stamps and MassHealth should carry on.

3. How exactly does the living arrangment guideline work?

You must if you are under age 18 and not married:

  • Reside along with your moms and dads, or
  • Reside with another general (associated with you or your child) that is age 20 or over, or
  • Reside with a appropriate guardian, or
  • Be considered a “graduate of a DSS living that is independent,” or
  • Be 17 yrs . old and fulfill unique “waiver” rules (see below).

You may be asked to live in a teen living program — if one is available if you do not meet one of the above. You must be living with your spouse to be exempt if you are under 18 and married.


18- and 19- year old teenagers (and teenagers within 60 times of switching age 18) don’t need to live with moms and dads, family members or perhaps in team houses. You do have to meet up with the college rules above.

4. That are the loved ones you are able to live with?

Teenagers nevertheless meet up with the residing arrangement guidelines if managing an aunt, uncle, grandparent, older sibling or other general that is age 20 or older. It is possible to live having a former stepparent—like your father’s ex-wife or even the paternal grandparents of the kid (but this doesn’t add coping with the kid’s dad if you should be unmarried). Your family relations don’t have to get legal guardianship. If you reside by having an unrelated adult, that individual does have to be legal guardian.

The income of family members or guardians that are legal perhaps not count in determining your TAFDC grant.

5. Imagine if you cannot live along with your parents?

If you should be under 18 and can not live along with your mum or dad, tell DTA. A teenager expert under agreement with DSS will contact both you and glance at whether you are able to carry on together with your moms and dads, in a living that is teen, or by yourself. You ought not need to live in the home you, there is certainly drug abuse in the house, in the event that house has rule violations, OR if you can find some other “extraordinary circumstances. in the event that you worry punishment, in the event your parent(s) will not help” The teenager specialist’s task would be to discover why you can’t live in the home and also make a suggestion make sure to inform her all of the reasons. You may want to pose a question to your college guidance therapist or any other experts who know you to definitely phone or compose the teenager expert. In the event that teenager professional agrees you simply cannot go back home, DTA could find you a living that is teen to get or give you advice for the waiver guidelines for 17 12 months olds.


Teenagers who will be 17 yrs old and should not live along with your moms and dads can request a unique “waiver” to reside by themselves if: a) in a great living situation, b) in school full-time in good standing, c) have actually stable son or daughter care and d) are taking part in a parenting program that is teen.

You do not need a waiver and are exempt from the rule if you are within 60 days of turning age 18.

6. Exactly How is Parental Income counted?

If you should be under age 18 and live in the home, your mother and father’ earnings above 200percent of this poverty degree matters in deciding simply how much TAFDC both you and your baby get. This degree is $1,990/month for just two people. When your moms and dads will not inform DTA their income, you may be rejected TAFDC however you can certainly still make an application for SNAP/Food Stamps and MassHealth.

Your parent’s earnings will not count as soon as you turn age 18. The income of non-parent family relations your home is with will not count —regardless of the age.

7. Challenging denial of advantages:

In case the TAFDC will be cut, you have actually a the proper to an advance written notice.

In the event that you require a hearing within 10 times of the date of notice, your advantages should carry on through the appeal.

You have got a right to bring in almost any evidence that is new why you can not live in the home. Any information that explains why you missed classes if DTA https://datingrating.net/okcupid-review says you missed too much school, bring to the hearing. You have got a right to see your TAFDC instance record, including college attendance documents and/or reports from the DSS contracted specialist that is teen. You’ve got the straight to make copies of every papers in your file, to inquire of concerns of DTA worker or even the teenager expert during the hearing and also to bring buddy or advocate to help you.

Call the local Legal Services to get more advice or representation that is legal. You’ll be able to contact the Massachusetts Alliance on Teen Pregnancy: for advice and recommendations.

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