Frequently Asked Questions
Below are questions and answers on the final rule "Changes
to the Admission and Occupancy Requirements in the Public Housing
and Section 8 Housing Assistance Programs," published on March
II. Treatment of Income (24 CFR 5.609)
A. Annual Income
B. Adjusted Income
C. Mandatory Earned Income Disregard from
D. Definition of Disabled
E. Welfare Sanctions
F. Training Income
A. Annual Income (24 CFR 5.609)
Q1: Clarification is needed regarding the applicability of the
provision relating to 24 CFR 5.609(d). The language as written
only references public housing when referring to annualization
of income. Does this provision apply to Section 8?
A1: 24 CFR 5.609(d) applies to all Section 8 programs as well
as public housing, however, during the recent revision of the
regulation the reference to owners was inadvertently omitted.
A correction to this paragraph to clarify that this provision
continues to apply to owners will be made in a future technical
revision. Private owners may continue to utilize the flexibility
contained in the provision.
Q2: A 17 year-old receiving home schooling is employed full time.
How is the employment income treated for this 17 year-old home
A2: The income of the 17 year-old must be excluded per 5.609(c)(1)
which states: "annual income does not include income from
employment of children under the age of 18 years."
B. Adjusted Income (24 CFR 5.611)
Q1: Are the mandatory and permissive deductions applicable to
the Housing Choice Voucher program?
A1: The mandatory deductions apply to both the Public Housing
and Housing Choice Voucher programs, as well as other Section
8 programs. Permissive deductions (5.611(b)), apply only to the
Public Housing program.
C. Mandatory Earned Income
Disregard from Annual Income (24 CFR 5.609)
D. Definition of Disabled (CFR 5.403)
Q1: What is the definition of a disabled family for purpose of
eligibility, allowances, and deductions?
A1: A disabled family means a family whose head, spouse, or sole
member is a person with disabilities. It may include two or more
persons with disabilities living together, or one or more persons
with disabilities living with one or more live-in aides.
As defined in section 5.403, a person with disabilities, means
a person who:
i) has a disability as defined in Section 223 of the Social Security
Act (42 U.S.C.423), or
ii) is determined by HUD regulations to have a physical, mental
or emotional impairment that:
a) is expected to be of long, continued, and indefinite duration;
b) substantially impedes his or her ability to live independently;
c) is of such a nature that such ability could be improved by
more suitable housing conditions, or
iii) has a developmental disability as defined in Section 102
of the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights
Act(42 U.S.C. 6001(5)).
The definition of a person with disabilities does not exclude
persons who have the disease acquired immunodeficiency syndrome
(AIDS) or any conditions arising from the etiologic agent for
acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV). However, for the purpose
of qualifying for low income housing, the definition does not
include a person whose disability is based solely on any drug
or alcohol dependence.
(Note: The definition of a person with disabilities as defined
in 24 CFR 8.3 must be used for purposes of reasonable accommodations
and program accessibility for persons with disabilities.)
E. Welfare Sanctioning (24 CFR Part 5.615)
Q1. If an applicant family is under a welfare sanction when they
enter the program, is the amount of the sanction included in annual
income? If so, when does a PHA stop counting this as income?
A1. The PHA may not include imputed welfare income in annual
income if the family was not an assisted resident at the time
of sanction. So if an applicant is under a sanction, the amount
of the sanction would not be included in determining the familys
Q2: If a tenant was sanctioned, and later a family member who
was previously unemployed for three months gets a job, would the
new earned income be used to offset the sanctioned amount?
A2: Yes, the additional earned income can be used to offset the
sanctioned amount. As cited in 24 CFR, Part 5.615(c)(4), the amount
of the imputed welfare income is offset by the amount of additional
income a family received that commences after the time the sanction
Q3: What action can a PHA take regarding a tenants rent
obligation prior to receiving information from the welfare agency
regarding a reduction or termination of welfare benefits.
A3: If the welfare agency does not verify the reason for the
reduction or termination within a reasonable time, the PHA must
reduce the rent obligation based on the familys income.
The PHA must determine (in advance) and wait a reasonable time
for written verification from the welfare agency of the reason
for the reduction or termination of benefits. If the welfare agency
verifies that welfare benefits were reduced or terminated due
to a family members noncompliance with a welfare agency
requirement to participate in an economic self-sufficiency program
or fraud in connection with the welfare program, the PHA must
not reduce a tenants rent.
Q4: Must a PHA reduce a familys rent if the family member
has complied with the welfare agencys economic self sufficiency
requirement and is still unable to obtain employment?
A4. Yes, when a family member is not able to find a job in spite
of full compliance with all welfare department requirements, then
the PHA must reduce the familys rent.
Q5. Must a PHA reduce the rent if they receive written verification
from the welfare agency that a family member has been sanctioned
for noncompliance with some other welfare requirement, for example,
missing three appointments?
A5: Yes . There are only two situations when a PHA must not reduce
the familys rent: (1) when a familys welfare benefits
are reduced because the welfare agency verifies in writing that
a family member has committed welfare fraud; or (2) when the familys
welfare benefits are reduced because the welfare agency verifies
in writing that the sanction is for noncompliance with a requirement
to participate in an economic self sufficiency program.
Q6: Under what circumstances is a PHA required to reduce the
rent when a welfare benefit has been reduced?
A6: A PHA must reduce the rent (1) when a welfare benefit is
reduced because a family has reached the maximum time limit for
receiving welfare benefits; (2) when the family is not able to
find a job despite full compliance with all welfare department
requirements; (3) when the family is being sanctioned for failure
to comply with welfare department requirements (other than sanctioning
for failure to participate in an economic self-sufficiency or
for fraud); (4) when a familys benefit is reduced because
of an earlier inadvertent overpayment.
Q7: What if a resident has a dispute about the information provided
by the welfare agency?
A7: If a resident has a dispute about the facts, the resident
must pursue an appeal through the welfare agencys procedures.
If a resident pursues an appeal through the welfare agency, the
PHA may reasonably delay imputing welfare income.
Q8: Has HUD issued any guidance on ways a PHA can establish a
good working relationship with the local welfare agency?
A9: Yes, HUD issued PIH Notice 2000-11 on May 9, 2000,which gives
guidance on establishing cooperation agreements between PHAs and
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) agencies to target
assistance, benefits and services to public housing residents
and Section 8 participants, and to verify welfare benefits, sanctions
and other information on public housing residents and Section
F. Training Income (24 CFR 5.609)
Q1: Is a Section 8 participant eligible for other training income
disregards other than the earned income disregard?
A1: A Section 8 participant is eligible for the "training
income exclusion" found at 24 CFR 5.609(c)(8)(i), amounts
received under programs funded by HUD and 5.609(c)(8)(v), incremental
earnings and benefits resulting to any family member from participation
in qualifying State or local employment training programs.
Q3: If a tenant is enrolled in a training program funded by HUD,
is their training income treated differently than the income from
other training programs?
A3: Yes. 24 CFR 5.609(c)(8)(i) excludes the full amount received
under training programs funded by HUD. If a resident is participating
in a HUD-funded training program, the entire amount, not just
the incremental amount, is excluded.
(For additional guidance regarding the training exclusion found
at 24 CFR 5.609(c)(8)(v), see PIH Notice 98-2 issued on 1/12/1998.)
<<Previous | I
| II | III | IV | V