TN 117 (12-23)

SI 00835.500 First-of-the-Month (FOM) Residence and ISM Determinations

A. Introduction

The first-of-the-month rule is an adjudicative expedient. It eliminates the need to develop ISM in each residence during a month when an individual moves.

B. Policy — FOM and ISM

1. First of the Month Rule

When an eligible individual changes their place of residence during a month, the ISM (if any) is based on the permanent residence as of the first moment of the month.

2. First of Month Residence

  1. a. 

    An individual's FOM residence is their permanent residence as of the first moment of the calendar month.

  2. b. 

    An individual may be physically absent from FOM residence without affecting applicability of this section. This may be due to a temporary absence (SI 00835.040) or to the circumstances described in SI 00835.500E.2. below.

3. FOM Rule's Relationship to Throughout-a-Month Requirements

The FOM rule does not affect or supersede the throughout-a-month requirements related to:

C. When to use the FOM rule

1. When the FOM Rule Applies

The FOM rule applies to ISM in any month in which an individual or couple has a permanent residence as of the first moment of the month and moves during the month.

2. When the FOM Rule Does Not Apply

The FOM rule does not apply to:

  • ISM only to the claimant (SI 00835.400) since such ISM is often not residence related and can be received at any point in a month; or

  • individuals who do not have a permanent residence (transients).

    Example: Tyler, a transient (SI 00835.060), lived in 3 residences in June including a week in the county jail, and received ISM in all three places. Because they had no permanent residence, the FOM rule does not apply. The ISM from all 3 residences is countable for June under the PMV rule.

D. Procedure — developing FOM residence

1. FOM Residence Apparent

Do not undertake any special documentation if the FOM residence is apparent from information in the file.

2. FOM Residence Not Apparent

If the FOM residence is not apparent because the individual was in the process of moving to a new permanent residence, but was not physically occupying it:

  • Obtain the individual's signed statement of intended physical FOM residence and the reason that they did not occupy it as of the first moment of the month (e.g., individual was in the hospital, the house was not ready for occupancy, individual moved on the first day of the month, etc.); and

  • Accept available evidence, if any, of intent (e.g., householder's statement, rental agreement, etc.); and

  • record your FOM determination within the SSI Claims System or on a paper Report of Contact.

E. Procedure — evaluating ISM for month of residence change

1. General Rules

  1. a. 

    When an individual changes their place of residence during a month, ISM is valued based on the permanent residence as of the first moment of the month.

    Example: The eligible individual's permanent living arrangement is an apartment in which they pay for all of their food and shelter. On 08/06/ 98, the eligible individual moves to a house with several roommates who provide them with both food and shelter. Under the FOM rule, the field office determines the ISM based on the individual's residence as of the first moment of the month of August. Thus, they are not charged ISM for August.

  2. b. 

    Use the PMV rule to charge an individual with a month's worth of ISM received in the FOM residence just as if they had lived there the entire month. We determine the ISM as if the individual lived in the FOM residence for the entire month.

    Example: An eligible individual leaves their permanent residence and enters jail on 03/15/98. They are released on 05/06/98 to their home where they have rental liability and pays for all of their own food and shelter. Based on the FOM rule, no ISM is charged in March for the period spent in jail. The CR determines that the individual was ineligible (N22) in April. Based on the FOM rule, the CR charges a month's worth of ISM for May capped at the PMV for the food and shelter the individual received while in jail from May 1-6.

  3. c. 

    For purposes of rebutting the PMV, use only contributions toward expenses in the FOM residence to establish the AV of the ISM for the month. Any contribution the individual makes toward expenses in the new residence are not considered a contribution toward expenses in the FOM residence.

2. Exceptions to the General Rules

a. Month of Birth

Treat an individual's place of birth as the FOM residence for the month of birth (See SI 01410.020 for instructions on determining the state and county of residence).

b. Month of Move From Public Institution to Medical Treatment Facility

Treat a medical facility as an individual's FOM residence even though they had a prior residence, if:

  • the only prior residence in the month is a public institution where the individual would have been ineligible had they remained there throughout the month; and

  • the new residence is one in which the individual will be subject to the $30 payment limit (SI 00520.011).

EXCEPTION: The $30 payment would not apply if the individual enters a medical facility during an authorized absence from a penal institution (SI 00520.009B.1.). During such an absence, the individual remains ineligible for SSI.

c. Month of Move and VTR Continues to Apply

Determine that the VTR continues to apply, if the FOM residence is one where the VTR would apply, and:

  • all subsequent residences in the month qualify as someone else's household; and

  • the individual receives both food and shelter in each such residence.

d. Month of Move and VTR Does Not Apply

Determine that the VTR does not apply in a month when the individual, who has been subject to the VTR, moves to another residence and makes a contribution toward the household operating expenses of the subsequent residence.

  • Use the PMV rule to charge the individual with a month's worth of ISM received in the FOM residence just as if they had lived there the entire month.

  • Do not use the contributions to the subsequent residence to establish the AV of ISM from the FOM residence (see SI 00835.500E.1.c. above).

F. Examples of ISM determinations based on FOM residence

Example 1: FOM Residence is a Medical Facility

Rose left their apartment and entered a medical facility on 08/05/98 and they did not intend to return to their residence. Rose's FOM residence in November was a medical facility. On 11/11/98 Rose was discharged to their adult child's home where Rose did not contribute toward any of the household operating expenses. The field office did not charge ISM in November because their FOM residence was the medical facility. Food and shelter received during a medical confinement are not income (SI 00815.100).

Example 2: FOM Residence is a Public Institution

Lisa entered the county jail on 01/23/99. Lisa's FOM residence in March was the county jail. Lisa was released on 03/04/99 and returned to their home. Lisa made no payment to the jail for food or shelter which had a monthly value of $300. The field office determined that Lisa received a month's worth of ISM for March. The ISM was valued at $300, so Lisa was charged the PMV. (Although Lisa was in jail for only 4 days, the monthly value of the ISM is counted. The amount is not prorated just because they were in jail for only part of the month. If Lisa wants to rebut the value of the ISM, they would need to show that the monthly value was less than $300, or verify that they made a payment to the jail.)

Example 3: Move From Public Medical Institution to Medical Care Facility

Grace's FOM residence in 11/98 was a public medical institution where they would have been ineligible (N02) if they had remained there throughout the month. Grace did not pay for any of their food or shelter. On 11/04/98 Grace became ill and was transferred to a nearby hospital, where they remained until 11 /20/98 when they returned to the FOM public institution. Since Medicaid paid for their stay at the hospital, Grace was eligible for the $30 payment for November. Because the $30 payment cap applies in November, ISM is not counted in that month. See SI 00835.500E.2.b.

NOTE: Had this public institution been a penal facility, Grace would have remained ineligible (N22) for November if their transfer to the medical facility was an authorized absence (SI 00520.009B.1.).

Example 4: Temporary Absence Due to Incarceration

For about 7 months, Marie had been living in an apartment and paying for all of their own household expenses when they were sent to the county jail on 05/18/98. While in jail Marie intended to return to their apartment, and on 06/05/98 they did return. The period of incarceration was a temporary absence from their permanent living arrangement. ISM received during a temporary absence is not counted. Therefore, Marie is not charged with any ISM for the period they spent in jail. Their FOM residence for June is their apartment (permanent residence). ISM, if any, is based on their FOM residence, and since Marie was not receiving ISM in their apartment, no ISM is charged for June.

Example 5: No Permanent Residence on the First of the Month

Mary is an eligible individual who normally lives with their parent. However, Mary had a dispute with their parent, and for the past 5 months has been staying at different friends' homes for a few weeks at a time. On 5/15/98 Mary is arrested and put in jail. On 05/28/98 Mary posts bail and returns to live with their parent.

Since Mary did not have a permanent residence in May, the FOM rule is not applicable. For May, ISM is counted from each place that they lived. Mary's short stays in the jail, with friends', and with their parent cannot be considered temporary absences because they had no permanent residence.

If Mary chooses to rebut the PMV in May, the actual value of ISM would include ISM they received 05/01-05/15 while staying with friends, ISM received 05/15-05/28 while in jail, and ISM received 05/28-05/31 in their parent's home.

Example 6: FOM Residence is a Household Where the VTR Would Apply

Roberta had been subject to the VTR for the past 8 months. They lived with 3 roommates and did not contribute to household expenses. On 08/15/ 98 Roberta moved into an apartment where they have rental liability. The VTR does not apply for August because they did not live in another person's household throughout a month. Therefore, the field office uses the PMV rule to charge Roberta with a month's worth of ISM received from their FOM residence. The field office determines that, in August, Roberta received ISM with an actual value of $200 which was capped at the PMV. Any money they spent in August toward household expenses in their new residence is not considered when computing ISM from the FOM residence.

NOTE:Assume that, instead of making no contribution, Roberta had contributed $100 toward expenses in the FOM residence and that they decide to rebut the value of the ISM they received in August in the FOM residence. Assume that the field office determines that the monthly household operating expenses are $800. With 4 household members in the FOM residence, Robert's pro rata share was $200. Roberta paid $100 toward the household expenses of the FOM residence. Therefore, the actual value of Roberta's ISM is $100 for August.

Example 7: Intended FOM Residence Would be Subject to the VTR

Ashley had been living alone in their own apartment. They decided to move to their sibling's home across the country where they would not pay for any food or shelter. Ashley left on 02/24/99, intending to arrive the last week of February, but bad weather delayed their arrival until 03/02/99. Although Ashley intended to be in the sibling's home as of the first moment of March, they were still in transit. The VTR does not apply in March because Ashley did not meet the throughout the month requirement. However, their intended FOM residence was their sibling's home and we use the PMV rule to charge a month's worth of ISM there for March.

Example 8: Transients/Homeless and the FOM Rule

A homeless individual sleeps on park benches and gets food from a private nonprofit homeless shelter which has been certified by the State as a nonprofit provider of in-kind support and maintenance (SI 00830.605 and SI 00835.331). The FOM rule does not apply because the individual has no permanent residence. ISM, if any, would be counted from all of the sources during the month. However, they are not charged with ISM for sleeping on the park benches since that is considered ISM of no value. The food received at the homeless shelter is excluded per SI 00830.605.

G. References

  • SI 00520.001 Resident of a Public Institution

  • SI 00520.011 Determination of Applicability of $30 Payment Limit

  • SI 00835.040 Temporary Absence from Federal Living Arrangement (LA)

  • SI 00835.060 Transients, Homeless Individuals, and LA/ISM Determinations

  • SI 00835.400 In-Kind Support and Maintenance (ISM) only to the Claimant

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SI 00835.500 - First-of-the-Month (FOM) Residence and ISM Determinations - 12/13/2023
Batch run: 12/13/2023