TN 8 (08-08)

SI 01310.145 Deeming Concept - Parent

Citations:

Regulations, 20 CFR 416.1160(d)

A. Definition of a parent

Due to regulatory changes, the definition of “parent” for deeming purposes has changed effective June 16, 2008.

When developing parent-to-child deeming for periods after 06/16/08, see SI 01310.145A.1.

When developing parent-to-child deeming for periods before 06/16/08, see SI 01310.145A.2.

NOTE: An individual whose parental rights have been terminated due to adoption no longer meets the definition of “parent” for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) purposes. This remains true even if the adopted child later lives in the same household with the former parent. Refer cases involving adopted Native American children who return to the household of a former parent to your Regional Office for possible referral to the Regional Chief Counsel. The parent-child relationship in these cases is governed by tribal law and likely requires further legal interpretation.

1. Effective 06/16/08

A parent whose income and resources are subject to deeming is one who lives in the same household with an eligible child and is:

  • a natural parent of the child;

  • an adoptive parent; or

  • the spouse of the natural or adoptive parent (“stepparent”) who lives in the same household as the natural or adoptive parent (including a “holding out” spouse as defined in SI 00501.152).

IMPORTANT: Parent-to-child deeming from a stepparent does not apply when the natural or adoptive parent has permanently left the household. Treat any absence by a natural or adoptive parent as permanent unless it is considered a temporary absence according to the instructions in SI 01310.165.

2. Prior to 06/16/08

A parent whose income and resources are subject to deeming is one who lives in the same household with an eligible child and is:

  • a natural parent of the child;

  • an adoptive parent; or

  • the spouse of the natural or adoptive parent (including a “holding out” spouse as defined in SI 00501.152).

EXCEPTION: Prior to 06/16/08, in the Second Circuit (Connecticut, New York, and Vermont), the Florez v. Callahan decision set an additional requirement for deeming from the spouse of a natural or adoptive parent. In Connecticut, New York, and Vermont ONLY, the income and resources of the spouse of a natural or adoptive parent who lived with the eligible child were deemed to the child only when the natural or adoptive parent also lived in the household.

B. Policy for when to deem from a parent

Deeming applies from a parent to a child when they live together in the same household.

1. When deeming begins

We deem a parent's income and resources to an eligible child beginning the month:

  • after the month the child comes home to live with the parent(s) (e.g., the month following the month the child comes home from the hospital);

  • of birth when a child is born in the parent's home;

  • after the month of adoption (the month of adoption is the month the adoption becomes final); or

  • after the month of a parent’s marriage (e.g., when a natural or adoptive parent marries) or the month after the month a parent begins living in a “holding out” relationship.

2. Deeming from the spouse of a parent

Generally, the same deeming rules that apply to a parent also apply to the spouse of a parent (a stepparent). In certain situations, we do not deem a stepparent’s income and resources to an eligible child even though the stepparent continues to live with the eligible child.

a. Effective 06/16/08

We do not deem the income or resources of a stepparent living with an eligible child if the natural or adoptive parent:

  • is deceased;

  • is divorced from the stepparent; or

  • has permanently left the household.

Treat any absence by a natural or adoptive parent as permanent unless it is considered a temporary absence according to the instructions in SI 01310.165.

b. Prior to 6/16/08

We do not deem the income or resources of a stepparent living with an eligible child if the natural or adoptive parent:

  • is deceased, or

  • divorced from the steppa