|Section 475 (4)(B) of the Act requires that foster care maintenance payments for a minor parent in foster care cover a child of such parent if the child is placed with the minor parent. Neither the statute nor regulations require the State to have placement and care responsibility of the child in order for such costs to be included in the minor parent's foster care maintenance payment. Good social work practice suggests that the minor parent's case plan include the needs of the child and|
that the child's needs and interests be addressed during the six-month periodic reviews and permanency hearings held on behalf of the minor parent. However, the State is not required to satisfy these requirements independently on behalf of the child because s/he has not been removed from her/his biological parent and; therefore, pursuant to Federal law and regulations, is not in foster care.
In cases where the State has placement and care responsibility for both the minor parent and child, and has placed them in different foster homes, title IV-E eligibility would have to be determined individually for each. Likewise, if a minor parent leaves the foster home and does not take the child, the child's eligibility for foster care then would be based upon his or her individual circumstances. In addition, the State would have to obtain responsibility for placement and care of the child through either a voluntary placement agreement or a court order with the required judicial determinations. Once the child is placed separately from the minor parent, s/he is considered to be in foster care and the requirements of the case review system at section 475(5) of the Act apply.
When a child is placed with his/her minor parent, no administrative costs may be claimed on her/his behalf because s/he is not eligible for nor a recipient of title IV-E foster care maintenance payments. The State is merely increasing the amount of the title IV-E foster care maintenance payment made on behalf of the eligible minor parent to accommodate the board and care of the child. In situations where the eligibility of the minor parent and his/her infant is determined separately and the two
are placed separately, the State may claim administrative costs for the child because s/he is eligible for and receiving title IV-E maintenance payments in her/his own right.
Section 473 (a)(2) of the Act provides that the child whose costs in a foster family home or child-care institution are covered by the title IV-E foster care payment made with respect to the parent is eligible for adoption assistance under title IV-E, if determined by the State to be a child with special needs under section 473 (c).
Section 472 (h) of the Act makes clear that the child whose costs are covered by the title IV-E payment made with respect to the parent shall be considered a child with respect to whom foster care maintenance payments are made under title IV-E and is thus eligible for medical assistance and social services under titles XIX and XX.