Oklahoma Department of Human Services
Sequoyah Memorial Office Building, 2400 N. Lincoln Blvd. • Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-3646 • Fax (405) 521-6684 • Internet: www.okdhs.org
 
340:75-15-128.1. Adoption assistance benefits
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Revised 6-1-12

 

(a) Adoption assistance benefits.  Adoption assistance benefits may include Medicaid coverage, a monthly assistance payment, special services, reimbursement of non-recurring adoption expenses, or any combination of these.  Children eligible for Title IV‑E assistance are also eligible for available Title XX services.

  • (1) Medicaid.  The child is eligible for the Oklahoma Medicaid program or the Medicaid program in the state of residence, when the child is Title IV-E eligible.  All necessary medical and dental care under the scope of the Title IV-E program is compensable at usual and customary charges, per OAC 340:75-15-129.
  • (2) Monthly adoption assistance payments.  A child may be eligible for a monthly adoption assistance payment to provide financial support to families who adopt children considered difficult to place.  The standard monthly adoption assistance payments set out in Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) Appendix C-20 (.pdf, 8 pp, 229 KB), Children and Family Services Division Rates Schedule, correspond to the child's age.
  • (3) Difficulty of care (DOC) rates.  The DOC descriptions set out in OKDHS Appendix C-20 (.pdf, 8 pp, 229 KB), are guidelines from which the most appropriate DOC rate is determined for the eligible child.  Every situation is not clearly defined in a DOC rate category and OKDHS, when determining the appropriate rate category:
    • (A) considers the child's age;
    • (B) requests documentation from the adoptive family and professional sources outside the adoptive family that verify the child's needs, conditions, or behaviors that correspond to a rate category; and
    • (C) may require updated documentation periodically to establish a child's ongoing eligibility for a particular DOC rate.
  • (4) Special services.  Special services are used to meet the child's needs that cannot be met by the adoptive parent(s) and are not covered under any other program for which the child qualifies.
    • (A) Special services include corrective appliances such as leg braces, prostheses, and walkers.
    • (B) Tutoring and private school tuition are not considered special services, because public school systems are mandated to provide an appropriate public education to all children with special needs.
    • (C) The child's special needs are reviewed at least annually and special services may be approved for a limited time.
    • (D) The amount cannot exceed the reasonable fee for the special service rendered.
    • (E) The special service is:
      • (i) negotiated between OKDHS and the adoptive parent(s);
      • (ii) approved by Children and Family Services Division (CFSD) Post-Adoption Services Section; and
      • (iii) included in Form 04AN002E, Adoption Assistance Agreement.
    • (F) Child care services may be considered special services and be paid by OKDHS as a part of adoption assistance for the child who is in foster care, as defined in Section 1355.20 of Title 45 Chapter XIII of The Code of Federal Regulations, at the time of approval for adoption assistance; provided, a child determined eligible, will retain eligibility in any subsequent adoption.  The child is eligible when:
      • (i) the child is five years of age or younger;
      • (ii) the child is adopted through OKDHS or a federally recognized Indian tribe as defined by the Federal and Oklahoma Indian Child Welfare Acts;
      • (iii) the child has been adopted by the parent applying for benefits;
      • (iv) the adoptive parent applying for benefits has fully executed Form 04AN002E, Adoption Assistance Agreement, that lists child care as an adoption assistance benefit for the child and includes Form 04AN033E, Post-Adoption Child Care Referral, when the child resides in Oklahoma; and
      • (v) employment has been verified and child care has been approved for only the days and hours the adoptive parent works; however, in a two-parent family, care may be approved for sleep time when one parent works days and the other parent works during normal night time sleep hours.
    • (G) The special service for child care is:
      • (i) negotiated between OKDHS and the adoptive parent(s), but cannot exceed the one star child care center rate as listed on OKDHS Appendix C-4-B (.pdf, 7 pp, 140 KB), Child Care Provider Rate Schedule, for a child residing outside Oklahoma;
      • (ii) approved by CFSD Post-Adoption Services Section;
      • (iii) included in Form 04AN002E, Adoption Assistance Agreement; and
      • (iv) paid from CFSD funds when the child resides outside Oklahoma.
  • (5) Reimbursement of non-recurring adoption expenses.  Certain non-recurring expenses incurred by or on behalf of the adoptive parent(s) in connection with the adoption of a child with special needs may be reimbursed.
    • (A) Reimbursable non-recurring adoption expenses:
      • (i) are the reasonable and necessary adoption fees, court costs, attorney fees, and other expenses that are directly related to the legal adoption of a child with special needs;
      • (ii) are not incurred in violation of state or federal law; and
      • (iii) have not been reimbursed from other sources or funds.
    • (B) Financial reimbursement is available to the adoptive parent(s) of an eligible child for:
      • (i) adoption fees;
      • (ii) court costs;
      • (iii) attorney fees;
      • (iv) adoptive home study fee;
      • (v) costs incurred for family members to obtain health and psychological reports;
      • (vi) supervision of the adoptive placement by another agency;
      • (vii) transportation, food, and lodging for the adoptive parent(s) and child during the placement process; and
      • (viii) cost of fingerprinting paid by the adoptive parent(s).

(b) Eligibility for federally funded adoption assistance.  To be considered eligible for federally funded adoption assistance, the child must meet all special needs criteria, per OAC 340:75-15-128.4 and have been placed for adoption in accordance with applicable state and local laws.  It is not required that the child:

  • (1) be in OKDHS custody or a federally recognized tribe at the time of finalization of the adoption; or
  • (2) meet Title IV‑E categorical eligibility requirements for adoption assistance, per OAC 340:75-15-128.2.

(c) Non-recurring adoption expense reimbursement amounts.  When siblings are placed together with the same adoptive family, separate reimbursement for non-recurring expenses is considered for each child.  Reimbursement of non-recurring adoption expenses, as defined in OAC 340:75-15-128.1(a)(4)(A), may be approved on behalf of each eligible child as described in paragraphs (i) through (iii) of this subsection.

  • (1) When the adoption is finalized, non-recurring adoption expense reimbursement assistance does not exceed the documented actual expenses incurred up to a maximum of $1,200 per child. 
  • (2) When the adoption is finalized and an Order Terminating Parental Rights or Order Determining the Child Eligible for Adoption Without the Consent of a Biological Parent was obtained in the adoption case, a request for reimbursement up to a maximum of $2,000 per child is considered by OKDHS on a case‑by‑case basis.  In cases where siblings are placed together with the same adoptive family, each child is considered individually with separate reimbursement for non-recurring expenses.
  • (3) When the trial adoption disrupts prior to finalization, the potential adoptive parent(s) may be eligible for up to a maximum reimbursement of $500 per child.

(d) Approval and payment of non-recurring adoption expenses.  Prior to finalization of the adoption, the request for reimbursement of non-recurring adoption expenses must be approved by CFSD Post Adoption Services Section and Form 04AN002E signed by the adoptive parent(s) and OKDHS designee.  Payment is made directly to the adoptive parent(s) for approved amounts shown on the itemized statement as paid in full.  Payment is made directly to a vendor, such as an attorney and private adoption agency, when the itemized statement indicates the fee has not been paid in full by the adoptive parent(s).  • 1

(e) Reimbursements in interstate adoptions.  The provisions of OAC 340:75-15-128.5(b) apply to reimbursement of non-recurring adoption expenses in interstate adoptions.

(f) Overpayment of adoption assistance benefits.  CFSD Post-Adoption Services Section verbally notifies the adoptive parent(s) when an overpayment is discovered.  OKDHS researches, analyzes, and verifies the overpayment amount within 60 days of the verbal notification to the adoptive parent(s).  The adoptive parent(s) is responsible for repayment, even when he or she is not responsible for causing the overpayment.

  • (1) CFSD Post-Adoption Services Section contacts the adoptive parent(s) regarding an adoption assistance overpayment and discusses the amount to be automatically deducted, when possible, from the monthly adoption assistance payment.
    • (A) The adoptive parent(s) is notified in writing by certified mail of the overpayment agreement plan.  Upon receipt of the overpayment agreement plan, the adoptive parent(s) signs and returns the plan with original signatures to OKDHS.
    • (B) The overpayment agreement plan does not exceed 36 months from the date of receipt of written notification of the plan.
    • (C) The minimum monthly payment toward the overpayment must not be less than $150, with the exception of the final payment.
  • (2) CFSD Post-Adoption Services Section notifies OKDHS Legal Division when the adoptive parent(s) does not respond to the written notification of or fails to comply with the overpayment agreement plan.
  • (3) A referral is made to Office of Inspector General when fraud is suspected.

(g) Modification of the adoption assistance agreement.  Form 04AN002E may be modified and the adoption assistance payment amount readjusted periodically when warranted by a change in circumstances and with the adoptive parent(s)' agreement.  A change in the child's eligibility for the DOC rate paid constitutes a change in circumstance.

  • (1) The adoption assistance payment amount may not be automatically adjusted without the adoptive parent(s)' agreement except for an across-the-board reduction or increase in OKDHS foster care reimbursement rates or DOC rates.
  • (2) Modification of Form 04AN002E is prospective only and is not retroactive.
  • (3) When the parties cannot come to an agreement, OKDHS establishes the payment amount.
  • (4) The adoptive parent(s) must inform OKDHS of circumstances that make the child ineligible for adoption assistance payments or eligible for payments of a different amount.  OKDHS may require:
    • (A) the adoptive parent(s) to provide updated documentation of the child's ongoing eligibility for the payment amount received; and
    • (B) evaluation of the child by a suitably licensed or certified examiner selected by OKDHS when the child's eligibility is in question.

(h) Termination of the adoption assistance agreement.  When Form 04AN002E is signed and in effect, adoption assistance only terminates when one of the conditions described in paragraphs (1) through (5) of this subsection occurs.

  • (1) The child reaches 18 years of age, except the child may continue to receive assistance until the day of the child's 19th birthday if the child:
    • (A) continues to attend high school or pursues General Educational Development (GED); or
    • (B) meets the criteria for an adoption assistance DOC rate, as determined by OKDHS.
  • (2) The adoptive parent(s) fails to submit a request for adoption assistance to extend beyond age 18.
    • (A) The request to extend adoption assistance beyond 18 years of age includes:
      • (i) a statement from school personnel documenting the child's high school attendance and anticipated graduation date;
      • (ii) a statement from school personnel documenting that the child is pursuing GED; or
      • (iii) medical or psychological assessments, documenting the child's difficulty of care needs, conducted and dated within six months preceding the child's 18th birthday, signed by a licensed physician, psychiatrist, or clinician describing the child's conditions, including diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis.
    • (B) When the adoptive parent(s) does not timely submit the required documentation, or if OKDHS determines the child does not meet the criteria that warrant extension of assistance beyond age 18, adoption assistance for the child turning 18 years of age terminates effective the day of the child's 18th birthday.
  • (3) OKDHS determines the adoptive parent(s) is no longer legally responsible for support of the child.
  • (4) OKDHS determines the adoptive parent(s) is no longer providing financial support to the child.  When a child is placed in out-of-home care, including psychiatric, residential, therapeutic, or foster family care, and the adoptive parent(s) continues to provide financial support for the child, adoption assistance may continue.  The rate of payment may be renegotiated, as appropriate.
  • (5) All of the child's adoptive parents are deceased.

(i) Death of adoptive parents or dissolution of the adoption.  A child who was Title IV-E eligible, met the criteria for special needs, and was receiving adoption assistance at the time of the death of all of the child's adoptive parents or at the time the adoption dissolved may be eligible for federally-funded adoption assistance if the child is adopted again after October 1, 1997.  A child receiving state-funded adoption assistance may be eligible for adoption assistance if adopted again after May 29, 1998.  To be eligible for adoption assistance the child must at the time of re-application meet the special needs criteria, and all requirements in paragraphs (1) through (4) of this subsection must be completed.

  • (1) The prospective adoptive parent(s) makes application on Form 04AN001E, Adoption Assistance Application.
  • (2) The prospective adoptive parent(s) provides from a district or tribal court a copy of a file-stamped:
    • (A) Petition for Adoption when requesting pre-finalization adoption assistance; or
    • (B) Final Decree of Adoption when requesting adoption assistance to begin after adoption finalization.
  • (3) OKDHS documents the child was receiving Title IV-E or state funded assistance at the time of the death of the adoptive parent(s) or at the time the adoption dissolved.
  • (4) OKDHS receives documentation that the new adoptive parent(s) is not the biological parent(s).

(j) Relocation by adoptive family to another state.  When an Adoption Assistance Agreement is established by OKDHS in the State of Oklahoma on or after October 1, 1983, all subsequent modifications of the agreement remain under the control and authority of OKDHS regardless of the state of residence of the adoptive parent(s).

INSTRUCTIONS TO STAFF 340:75-15-128.1

 

Revised 9-1-11

 

1.   Approval and payment for non-recurring adoption expenses.

(1) Designated Children and Family Services Division Post-Adoption Services Section completes Adoption Fees Authorization to Purchase screen in the Finance system and mails the authorization form to the vendor.

(2) The authorization is signed by both the vendor and the adoptive parent and returned to Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) Finance Division at the address listed on the form.

(3) OKDHS Finance Division issues payment to the vendor within ten business days of receipt of the authorization form.

Last Updated:  8/1/2014