Eligibility

A. Residency Requirement (I.C. 12-20-8)

Township Public assistance applicants must physically reside in the township to which they apply (except for situations of emergency affecting applicants who are temporarily in the township for  reasons other than township public assistance).  It is not necessary to live in a particular township for any specific length of time.  However, to be eligible for assistance, an applicant must have established a household within the township.  The household must not have been established for the primary purpose of qualifying for township public assistance (I.C. 12-20-8-3).   Therefore, in order to verify an applicant’s residency and their intent to live permanently in the township, the Trustee will consider the conduct of the applicant, both active and passive, as may reveal an intent to reside within a given household and within his respective township.   Items which will be used to establish residency include mailing address, Indiana driver’s license, motor vehicle registration, Indiana state picture I.D., voter’s registration, telephone listing, utility billings, address given to others, change of address notices via the U.S. Postal Services; a secured lease; the location of the previous residency and how the household  was supported there; the means of transportation which brought the household to this township and how it was paid; invitations or promised assistance from relatives, friends, or social service agencies; or any other documentation requested by the township. (I.C. 12-20-8-3).

  1. Unless proven otherwise, it will be presumed that able-bodied applicants moving into the township without holding a full time job of thirty (30) hours per week or more, within one hundred eighty (180) days prior to the date of applying to the Trustee for assistance, was done in contemplation of or for the purpose of seeking and obtaining township assistance.
  2. Unless proven otherwise, it will be presumed that able-bodied applicants moving into the township holding a HUD voucher and not ever holding a full-time job of thirty (30) hours per week or more, for more than sixty (60) days, was done in contemplation of or for the purpose of seeking and obtaining township assistance.

The definition of “household” will not be construed to mean temporary living arrangements made available by friends, relatives, acquaintances, or public or private social service agencies. Household is defined as simply an individual or as a group of people who share the same living quarters with common entrance to the housing unit, as well as a common kitchen/dining area.

A residence legally acquired continues until the legal residence is lost by acquiring a new legal residence or by willful and uninterrupted absence from the township in which legal residence has been gained.

An individual may not be considered to have lost legal residence in Indiana because of an absence that is due to business of the State or of the United States (I.C. 12-20-8-6).

Time spent in a penal institution, public or private charitable or benevolent institution, hospital, fraternal home, or in any place while serving in the armed forces of the U.S. are not counted in determining legal residence (I.C. 12-20-8-5).

Individuals in the U.S. without permission of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) are ineligible to receive poor relief assistance (I.C. 12-20-8). Aliens must be in the country legally and hold a valid Green Card issued by the INS.

In cases of emergency, the township may provide temporary assistance to applicants who are temporarily in the township unless the applicant is specifically in the township for township public assistance.  (This should not be interpreted or construed to mean that individuals residing in adjoining townships may come to the larger, urban township for assistance.)  The township in which they presently reside is still obligated to investigate the circumstances of the distressed person(s) and render whatever assistance is necessary.  Consequently, Fairfield Township will also refer individuals in this category to the appropriate township.  If a non-resident applicant or household member is a child, the parent of a child requiring the parent’s care, or is sick, aged, injured, crippled, or physically or mentally unable to work or travel, the township trustee will furnish township public assistance to the individual until the individual can be returned to the place of the individual’s legal residence (I.C. 12-20-9-2).  If an applicant or household member is determined to be eligible for township public assistance and entitled to temporary emergency relief and is present in a township in which he/she does not have legal residence, the Trustee may, if he considers it advisable, place the individual temporarily in the county home, where the individual, if capable, is to be employed (I.C. 12-20-17-4).

If the Township Trustee is unable to ascertain and establish the place of legal residence of an individual requesting assistance, the Trustee will proceed to provide assistance in the same manner as other individuals are provided assistance (I.C. 12-20-8-7).

Unemancipated youths are ineligible to apply for township public assistance.

B. Income Standards (I.C. 12-20-5.5-6)

The trustee has set income standards consistent with the reasonable cost of basic necessities in his particular township and these are used to define financial eligibility (I.C. 12-20-5.5-6). Basic necessities include those items or services essential to meet the minimum standards of health, safety, and decency and include the following:

(1) Shelter.

(2) Essential utility services (water, natural gas, and electrical services besides fuel for heating and cooking).

(3) Food.

(4) Medical care (described in I.C. 12-20-16-2).

(5) Clothing and footwear.

(6) Household essentials (basic and essential items such as hand soap, detergents, paper products, furniture, utensils, as well as heating and cooking stoves. Personal hygiene supplies are included but not limited to, first aid and medical supplies for minor injury and illness).

(7) Transportation to seek and accept employment (on a reasonable basis).

(8) Other services or items the Township Trustee determines are necessities (I.C. 12-7-2-20.5).

As part of the application process, applicants are required to provide a listing of all income expended in the last thirty (30) days. Only expenditures for basic necessities will be recognized as legitimate (i.e., expended income).  Expenditures for items other than basic necessities will be considered the same as unexpended income.  Applicants and household members will be required to provide current receipts for all expended funds to verify how income was spent.

Only receipts and expenditures for basic necessities will be recognized (I.C. 12-7-2-200.5).  An automobile and auto related expenditures (repairs), cable television service, non- basic telephone services, telephone accessories, court costs and related expenses due to criminal behavior are included in, but is not limited to, items considered non-basic or non-essential. Therefore, expenditures for these items are not recognized as legitimate expenses or justifiable expenditures and will be subtracted from the township income eligibility standards listed below. The difference will be the maximum total poor relief payable on behalf of the household.

Applicants for all township public assistance, who are otherwise eligible, will only be eligible if the Gross household income for the thirty (30) days prior to application is less than the following standards (based on the number of persons living in the household):

Household                                                                     Gross

Size                                                                                Income

 

1………………………………………………………………$1,508

2……………………………………………………………….$2,030

3……………………………………………………………….$2,553

4……………………………………………………………….$3,075

5……………………………………………………………….$3,598

6……………………………………………………………….$4,120

7……………………………………………………………….$4,643

8……………………………………………………………….$5,165

(Each additional member add $523)