Q: I understand a new law went into effect this year that allows youth under age 18 to receive their foster care payment directly if they are enrolled in college and living in a dorm. Is that the case?
A: Yes. Assembly Bill 766 went into effect on January 1, 2018 which allows a minor dependent at least 16 years of age to receive his or her foster care payment directly if they meet each of the following criteria:
- The minor is enrolled in a post-secondary educational institution, and
- The minor is living independently in a dormitory or other designated housing of the post-secondary educational institution, and
- The placement is made pursuant to a supervised placement agreement and Transitional Independent Living Plan (TILP).
Earlier this month, the California Department of Social Services issued All County Letter 18-135 which outlines the requirements of AB 766 and provides instructions to counties about its implementation. Additional information included in the ACL follows:
- Minors who are receiving court ordered family reunification services are not be eligible to live independently, if the court finds that such placement would impede reunification efforts.
- Dormitories, other designated university housing, and Job Corps housing are exempt from the health and safety checklist.
- A new supervised placement agreement form specific to 16-18 year old youth will be made available in the future.
- Assembly Bill 766 (Friedman), Chapter 710 (Cal. Stat. 2017). http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB766
- California Department of Social Services. All County Letter 18-135 (2018). http://www.cdss.ca.gov/Portals/9/ACL/2018/18-135.pdf?ver=2018-11-20-144036-853