TN 63 (12-08)

SI 00835.170 Earmarked Sharing

A. Policy for earmarked sharing

An individual is not subject to the value of one-third reduction (VTR) when earmarked sharing exists because he or she is not receiving both food and shelter from the household in which he or she resides. Always ask the individual whether he or she earmarks the contribution if no living arrangement (LA) basis higher in the sequence of LA development is alleged.

Earmarked sharing exists when an individual (or at least one member of an eligible couple) designates part or all of his or her contribution toward household operating expenses for food or shelter and the contribution equals or exceeds the pro rata share of household expenses for food or shelter. Any in-kind support and maintenance (ISM) received is subject to the presumed maximum value (PMV).

REFERENCES:

B. Policy for sequence of living arrangement development

As a step in the sequence of household living arrangement development, consider earmarked sharing when all of the following apply:

  1. The individual lives in a household with at least one person other than his spouse, child (as defined in SI 00501.010), or a person whose income is deemable to the individual;

  2. The individual does not have ownership interest (SI 00835.110) or rental liability (SI 00835.120);

  3. A public assistance household does not exist (SI 00835.130);

  4. The individual (or both members of an eligible couple) does not separately consume his or her food (SI 00835.140);

  5. The individual (or both members of an eligible couple ) does not separately purchase his or her food (SI 00835.150);

  6. The individual does not contribute within $5 of the pro rata share of household operating expenses for food and shelter (SI 00835.160); and

  7. The individual (or at least one member of an eligible couple) alleges earmarking part or all of his or her contribution for food or for shelter.

C. Policy for earmarking computations

1. Earmarked sharing computation

An earmarked sharing computation is similar to a sharing computation (see
SI 00835.160C. “Sharing”). However, no $5 tolerance applies for earmarked sharing.

2. Earmarked contribution for shelter

If the individual's contribution is earmarked for shelter, determine the individual's pro rata share of shelter expenses. If the earmarked contribution equals or exceeds the pro rata share for shelter, earmarked sharing exists. The ISM received by the individual from within the household is in the form of food and is valued under the PMV rule (SI 00835.300). To compute the actual value (AV) of ISM from within the household, follow the instructions in SI 00835.340C “Computation of In-Kind Support and Maintenance from Within a Household”.

3. Earmarked contribution for food

If the individual's contribution is earmarked for food, determine the individual's pro rata share of food expenses. If the earmarked contribution equals or exceeds the pro rata share of food expenses, earmarked sharing exists. The ISM received by the individual from within the household is in the form of shelter and is valued under the PMV rule. To compute the actual value (AV) of ISM from within the household, follow the instructions in SI 00835.340C “Computation of In-Kind Support and Maintenance from Within a Household”.

4. Double earmarking

When an individual earmarks a specific portion of his contribution for food and another specific portion for shelter, it is called double earmarking. Compute the individual's pro rata share of food expenses and compare it to the portion of the contribution earmarked for food.

Compute the individual's pro rata share of shelter expenses and compare it to the portion of the contribution earmarked for shelter.

If either earmarked contribution equals or exceeds a pro rata share of the item for which it is earmarked, earmarked sharing exists. The individual is receiving ISM in the form of the item for which he is not earmarking. This ISM is valued under the PMV rule. To compute the actual value (AV) of ISM from within the household, follow the instructions in SI 00835.340C “Computation of In-Kind Support and Maintenance from Within a Household”.

EXAMPLE: Determining if double earmarking applies

Kathleen Daly applies for SSI as an aged individual. For the past three years, she has been living with her nephew and his family in an apartment for which he has rental liability.
She says she contributes $150 per month and says it is supposed to be half for food and half for shelter. She does not allege anything higher in the LA sequence than sharing.

When the claims representative (CR) explains sharing to her and asks if she believes that her contribution meets her pro rata share of household operating expenses (one-fifth, in this case), she replies that she does not believe $150 is anywhere near her share. Because the CR identifies this as a token contribution, the CR documents the token contribution on the Householder of Another page (See SI 00835.160D.2. “Sharing – Token Contribution”).

Although the CR can curtail development of sharing, the CR must consider earmarked sharing. The CR asks if her $75 contribution equals or exceeds her share of the shelter expenses. She says “no”, because the rent alone is $450 per month.

The CR asks whether her $75 food contribution meets her share of food expenses. Ms. Daly is unsure because the household receives food stamps. Ms. Daly estimates the food expenses to be $400 per month. The CR must obtain evidence of earmarking because her alleged earmarked contribution of $75 is within $20 of her alleged food share of $80 ($400 ÷ 5).

The CR informs Ms. Daly that a statement from her nephew or his wife (knowledgeable adults in the household) regarding her earmarked contribution and the household food expense is needed for verification.
The CR would obtain a signed statement on an SSA-8011-F3 or use a report of contact (DROC) screen to document the nephew’s or his wife’s statement regarding the earmarked contribution and the household food expense made by Ms. Daly.

The CR would then update the appropriate Household of Another page within MSSICS, documenting verification of the earmarked contribution. This type of documentation is needed because chargeable ISM in the form of shelter is also a consideration; evidence of the shelter expense is required.

Ms. Daly submits the requested statement (SSA-8011-F3) that shows the food expenses are $450 per month and shelter expenses are $600 per month.

The statement verifies Ms. Daly's allegations about her contribution ($75 for food and $75 for shelter).

Because Ms. Daly is not paying her earmarked share for food, $90 ($450 ÷ 5), the CR determines that she is subject to the VTR, as she is receiving food and shelter throughout the month from the household in which she resides.

5. Special earmarking situations

a. Eligible couples

If both members of an eligible couple earmark part or all of their contribution for food or shelter, compare their combined pro rata share for food or shelter to their combined earmarked contribution. If their combined earmarked contribution equals or exceeds their combined pro rata share for food or shelter, then the couple meets earmarked sharing.

If only one member of an eligible couple is earmarking his or her contribution for food or shelter, consider whether that earmarked amount equals or exceeds the couple's combined pro rata share of the item for which the one member is earmarking. If so, earmarked sharing applies to the couple. Do not use only one member's pro rata share to determine earmarked sharing for an eligible couple.

Whether one or both members of the eligible couple are making an earmarked contribution, the AV of ISM received by the couple from within the household is subject to the PMV rule.

To compute the AV of the ISM, follow the instructions in SI 00835.340C “Computation of In-Kind Support and Maintenance from Within a Household”.

b. Eligible individual/child living with an ineligible spouse/parent

An individual may be considered to be earmarking based on the spouse's or parent's contribution. If the spouse's or parent's contribution is earmarked for food or shelter, or both, determine if you may allocate some portion of this contribution to the eligible individual in accordance with SI 00835.210 “The One-Third Reduction Provision and Deeming”. Determine whether this allocated contribution from the spouse or parent, in addition to any earmarked contribution from the individual's own funds, equals or exceeds the pro rata share of the earmarked household operating expense.

If earmarked sharing is met, apply the computations described in SI 00835.340C “Computation of Inside ISM” to compute the AV of ISM the individual receives from within the household.

D. Developing and documenting earmarked sharing

1. General rule

If the individual contributes, document the contribution on the Household of Another page.

Unless a developmental curtailment described in this section at SI 00835.170D.2. applies, obtain a signed statement (SSA-8011-F3) or a report of contact (DROC) from a knowledgeable adult member of the household other than the individual's spouse. This statement should confirm the amount of the earmarked contribution, as well as the household operating expenses for food or shelter, or both, if these expenses were not obtained for a sharing determination (see Sharing SI 00835.160). If evidence of household operating expenses and the earmarked contributions cannot be obtained, charge the VTR.

For more information about using the SSA-8011-F3 to document sharing, see SI 00835.625B “SSA-8011—Statement of Household Expenses and Contributions”.

Document the issue by faxing the paper form into the appropriate electronic folder. Do not retain the paper form after documenting the issue electronically. For more information on storing forms electronically, refer to GN 00301.322 “Retention of Paper Material After Faxing into Either the eDIB folder or Claims Folder using NDRed”.

2. Curtailing development of earmarked sharing

You may curtail development based on the individual's statements when:

  1. The individual agrees that the earmarked contribution does not equal the pro rata share of food or shelter expenses (i.e., makes only a token contribution). Record this information on the Household of Another page; or

  2. The individual provides information on the Household of Another page that establishes that the alleged pro rata share of food or shelter expenses exceed the alleged earmarked contribution by $20 or more.

In these situations, earmarked sharing does not exist. Assume that the household operating expenses include both food and shelter. Charge the VTR unless the file shows that the household operating expenses do not include both food and shelter. The individual’s answers on the Household of Another page are sufficient documentation that earmarked sharing does not apply.

NOTE: For PE actions processed outside MSSICS on paper forms, document the individual’s statement about earmarking and contributions on an SSA-8006-F4. Document the issue by faxing the paper form into the appropriate electronic folder. Do not retain the paper form after the issue has been documented electronically. For more information on storing forms electronically, refer to GN 00301.322 “Retention of Paper Material After Faxing into Either the eDIB folder or Claims Folder using NDRed”.