Michigan Department of Human Services reissues notices to cash assistance recipients who have reached their federal and state lifetime limits
LANSING, Oct. 12, 2011 - The Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS) has reissued 11,162 notices to Family Independence Program (FIP) recipients who have reached their FIP cash assistance lifetime limits, in accordance with the ruling by U.S. District Judge Paul D. Borman on Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2011. The reissued notices cite the appropriate legal authority as well as more prominent language on the appeal process, as required in the ruling.
"We are moving forward with the welfare reform passed by the legislature," said Maura D. Corrigan, DHS director. "These notices, the fourth that have been sent to recipients affected, follow Judge Borman's directive."
The more restrictive lifetime limits on cash assistance became law on Oct. 1, 2011. Those affected by the limits received three notices, beginning on Aug. 9, and a minimum of three phone calls from a DHS social worker. In addition, DHS has staffed a call center for those affected by the lifetime limits to assist them with benefits ranging from job placement to rent assistance.
If clients appeal the decision within 10 days after the notice is issued, they will continue to receive benefits until their cases are heard. Should they not prevail in the appeal, recipients would be required to refund the benefit payment. Recipients have a total of 90 days in which to lodge an appeal, though they would not receive benefits during the appeal process after the 10-day window had passed.
"Benefits to this group of recipients have not been interrupted, nor has our outreach to help them achieve independence with programs including job placement, food assistance, and help with rent," said Corrigan.
Those affected by lifetime cash assistance limits are encouraged to call 1-855-763-3677 to connect with a DHS social worker who can help with available programs and resources.