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The Pennsylvania Code website reflects the Pennsylvania Code changes effective through 52 Pa.B. 1354 (February 26, 2022).

55 Pa. Code § 151.43. Requirements.

§ 151.43. Requirements.

 (a)  Eligibility for TANF. When a child is living with a relative who is exercising responsibility for the care and control of the child, eligibility for TANF will not be affected by the following situations:

   (1)  The child is under the jurisdiction of the court (for example, is receiving probation services or protective supervision).

   (2)  Someone other than the relative (for example, a person, or public or voluntary agency, holds legal custody of the child).

 (b)  Persons 15 years of age or younger. A person 15 years of age or younger, living in the home of his specified relative, will not normally be considered to be capable of exercising responsibility for the care and control of the child unless that person can clearly show that capability. The capability may be shown by a statement provided by the specified relative in whose home the applicant or recipient is living, that the applicant or recipient is in fact exercising the care and control. In the absence of a statement, a factual determination of who is exercising care and control will be made. If a specified relative is exercising responsibility for the care and control of the child, then regardless of the age of the specified relative, he may apply for assistance (TANF) for himself or his child, or both, as well as be the payment name for a grant for himself and his child.

 (c)  Different specified relatives within a shelter group. If, within a shelter group, different specified relatives are exercising responsibility for care and control of different groups of children eligible for TANF, each relative will be considered to be maintaining a home for the children on whose behalf he applies for or receives assistance if the following conditions are met:

   (1)  The specified relatives of different groups of children are not spouses of each other.

   (2)  No one of the specified relatives is the parent of all the children in the shelter group for whom TANF is to be authorized.

 (d)  Temporary absence of the child or relative. The temporary absence of either the child or the relative from his home will not affect the eligibility of the child for TANF under the following circumstances:

   (1)  The absence of the child is not more than or expected to be more than 180 consecutive days. A specified relative shall report the absence of a minor child by the end of the 5-day period that begins with the date that it becomes clear to the specified relative that the minor child will be absent beyond the consecutive 180-day period. A specified relative who fails to report within 5 days of the time it becomes clear to the specified relative that a minor child will be absent beyond the consecutive 180-day period will be ineligible for assistance for 30 days.

   (2)  The absence does not basically affect the responsibility of the relative for the care and control of the child. However, if the child is living in a school to which the relative has had to turn over control of the child, the relative will not be eligible for TANF.

   (3)  The relative will exercise this responsibility when the reason for the temporary separation no longer exists. For example, a child is temporarily living away from home because the best plan for the child’s education through the first 12 grades, undergraduate college or for vocational training requires it. During the period of separation, the county staff shall decide whether or not the child is still in need or whether the child’s needs are being met: if the child is in need, the grant will be computed as though the child were living in the home of the specified relative.

 (e)  Temporary exception to living with specified relatives. The requirements for a temporary exception to living with specified relatives are as follows:

   (1)  During a temporary period of crisis or change in a child’s life, that is, when an emergency deprives the child of care by a specified relative, and plans for the future care and protection of the child cannot be made immediately, the child may be living with a person other than a specified relative. In these cases, the child shall be eligible only if the person the child is living with is acting in the behalf of the child, the child was receiving TANF when the crisis occurred and active planning is going on for the continuing care of the child.

   (2)  TANF is granted during this temporary period so that plans for the continuing care of the child can be made and carried out, for example, so that the child can be referred to another agency and be accepted by them for care. When the plans for the child have been made and carried out, the temporary TANF payments will end. The plans shall be reviewed at a redetermination.

 (f)  Pregnant women. A pregnant woman with no children or with children who are not receiving TANF may qualify for TANF for herself only as a specified relative if all of the following apply:

   (1)  The pregnancy and the expected delivery date are established by a physician, clinic or other medical source.

   (2)  The fetus, if born, would be eligible for TANF based on the criteria in §  153.43 (relating to requirements).


   The provisions of this §  151.43 amended under sections 201(2), 403(b) and 432 of the Public Welfare Code (62 P. S. § §  201(2), 403(b) and 432); Titles I and III of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (Pub. L. No. 104-193) (PRWORA), creating the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program, and amending 42 U.S.C.A. § §  601—619, 651—669(b) and 1396u-1; and the Federal TANF regulations in 45 CFR 260.10—265.10.


   The provisions of this §  151.43 amended March 30, 1984, effective March 31, 1984, 14 Pa.B. 1087; amended April 12, 1991, effective May 1, 1991, 21 Pa.B. 1557; amended August 16, 1991, effective August 17, 1991, 21 Pa.B. 3699; amended September 13, 2002, effective retroactively to March 3, 1997, 32 Pa.B. 4435. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (268310) and (247595) to (247596).

Notes of Decisions

   Temporary Absence

   Where a welfare hearing officer found that a mother would have care and control of her child when the separation caused by a court-mandated visit with his father no longer existed, and therefore concluded that the mother was only ineligible for AFDC benefits during the periods when the child was residing with his father, it was error to discontinue rather than suspending the mother’s benefits during the time the child was with his father. Varner v. Department of Public Welfare, 704 A.2d 725 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1997).

Cross References

   This section cited in 55 Pa. Code §  141.71 (relating to policy); 55 Pa. Code §  171.21 (relating to policy); and 55 Pa. Code §  175.24 (relating to procedures).

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