Include ALL sources of income and ALL expenses
In completing the financial summary, be sure to include ALL sources of income and ALL expenses. A common mistake made in completing the financial summary is to only include regular monthly bills, such as rent and car payment. However, nearly everyone has expenses that are not a set amount, such as groceries, clothing for self and children, gas, home and vehicle repair bills. The remaining amount when deducting expenses from income is the amount the consumer should be able to pay for VR services each month. If the consumer makes, for example, $700 a month, and the amount shown remaining after expenses is $400, it is extremely likely some expenses were overlooked.
Availability of other sources of payment for services
The economic evaluation includes two components. First, does the the applicant him or herself have the financial ability to pay for these services. Second, can similar benefits be obtained from other programs.
The applicant’s economic situation is to be included in the planning process. The counselor will insure that he has informed each applicant of the distinction between those services that are based on economic need and these services that may be provided at no cost to consumers.
The applicant’s eligibility for “similar benefits” under other programs shall be part of the planning process.
“Similar Benefits” means any appropriate service or financial assistance available to an individual with a disability from a program other than vocational rehabilitation to meet, in whole or in part, the cost of vocational rehabilitation services to be provided under an individualized plan for employment (IPE) for such a handicapped individual.
1. The counselor is to review with the applicant his eligibility for benefits from other agencies before committing agency funds. For example, most college students will be eligible for Pell grants and other financial assistance to cover tuition. Therefore, the Spirit Lake Vocational Rehabilitation Project would pay tuition only if these other funds were not available to the student.
2. Similar benefits are to be utilized in all cases to the extent that they are adequate, timely, and do not interfere with achieving the rehabilitation objective of the applicant.
3. Agency funds may be expended for training institutions of higher education only after maximum efforts have been made to obtain grant assistance from other sources.
- The IPE will identify the applicant’s eligibility for similar benefits and the extent and use of these benefits in achieving the vocational objective.