Collateral Contact

 

All clients are required to furnish verifications necessary to establish initial and continuing eligibility. When a client states s/he cannot obtain verification via documentary evidence, verification through collateral contact must be explored.

Collateral contact is a verbal or written confirmation of a household's circumstances by a third party who has firsthand knowledge client’s circumstances and can be used to verify certain types of information. When necessary, you may make a collateral contact to confirm questionable information, or to assist the client in expediting the verification process.

 

Collateral Contact Initiative

The Department has developed a new initiative to utilize collateral contacts to expedite case processing and to limit the amount of document processing. Collateral contacts are most effective when a client has one verification outstanding to process his/her case. Collateral contact should only be made when a client is at the TAO so as to obtain appropriate consent.

For the purpose of this initiative, collateral contacts may only be made when a client is at the TAO. This allows you to explore the option of calling a collateral contact with the client, including a discussion of whether s/he would like the Department to contact the third party on the client’s behalf. It also allows the third party to hear verbal confirmation from the client that s/he grants permission to release information to DTA.

Although it is preferred to have the client fill out a Request for Employment Information form (DORL-1) or a Voluntary Consent to Release Information form (VARI-OI), it is not required for this initiative.

If the third party collateral contact requires a written release from the client, you may have the client complete either a VARI-OI form or a DORL-1 form in office.  Once completed, you must send a copy of the form to the third party directly.

When calling a collateral contact, you must always:

The Narrative must include the following elements:

-      That the client was in the office

-      The option of collateral contact was offered

-      Client accepted or declined the option reaching out to a collateral contact

-      If contact was successful or not

-      If contact was made:

Important

Clients always have the right to decline the option for you to reach out to a collateral contact.

 

For the purpose of this initiative, a third person collateral contact may be called for the following verification elements only for in person clients who have agreed:

o    proof of participation in an Office of Refugee Resettlement-funded or approved refugee training program at least halftime

o    participation in a Mass Rehab training program

o    drug/alcohol treatment

o    temporary health issues that limit one's ability to meet the requirement

o    working with a CORI specialist (15% exemption)

o    certain good cause scenarios

 

If the information provided by a collateral contact is questionable, you may need to make additional contacts.

 

 

Verifications Policy and Procedures (EAEDC)

Verifications Policy and Procedures (SNAP)

Verifications Policy and Procedures (TAFDC)

 

 

  Last Update: October 26 , 2018