Domestic Violence


Staff may be informed of domestic violence issues at any point when interacting with an applicant or client.  All applicants and clients must be informed about the availability of domestic violence services, including good cause waivers from certain TAFDC participation and program requirements.  See Domestic Violence Unit and Services. When domestic violence is acknowledged or if you feel that the safety of the client and/or the child(ren) is in jeopardy, a referral to a DV Specialist must be made.



If you believe a Child Abuse/Neglect report (51A) should be filed for a domestic violence related case, the supervisor, the DV Specialist and the DV Liaison must be consulted to determine the safest way to proceed, as domestic violence may escalate in response to the filing of a 51A.


Complete the Domestic Violence page by clicking the yes/no Domestic Violence situation radio button then, if appropriate, by clicking either check box below to indicate if:

If neither applies, do not check either box.


Heightened Level of Security

A client may request a Heightened Level of Security (HLS) if they are a survivor of Domestic Violence (DV), or fears for their safety for reasons other than domestic violence.  Other reasons for HLS include being a victim of gang violence, involvement in a witness protection program, and any other reason that person fears for their safety.  This request may occur during the application process, after the application has been taken, any time during case maintenance, or during the certification period.  The HLS indicator can be assigned with the client’s verbal or written consent, or by submitting the HLS-1 Confirmation/Declination form to reflect the request.  If the applicant/client requests to use the HLS indicator, you must explain the limitations that exist with its use.  See the Heightened Level of Security page.

When a client reports a current or past domestic violence situation, you must:


DV Specialists cannot speak to a client by phone if the HLS indicator is activated unless the client is in a TAO.


If the decision is to use the HLS indicator, you must immediately activate the HLS indicator and:

  1. check the HLS check box

  2. check the Abusive Person in Household check box, if it is known that the abusive person is in the household.  If it is not known, leave it blank, and

  3. annotate the Narrative tab that the client met or spoke with the DV Specialist and requested the HLS indicator

When a client chooses to use the HLS indicator for cases not involving domestic violence, you must:

  1. access the Domestic Violence page

  2. click Yes on the Domestic Violence Situation radio button

  3. check the HLS check box, and

  4. indicate on the Narrative tab the source of concern, if known, and that domestic violence is not involved


Clients can request HLS or request the removal of HLS with a telephonic or written self-declaration, or by completing the HLS-1 Confirmation/Declination form.


If Heightened Level of Security  is selected, the name, Social Security Number (SSN), AP ID Number and date of birth (DDOB) of the client will appear in red throughout the Electronic Case Folder.  A yellow triangle with an exclamation point will also appear to the right of the Name, SSN and DOB on each page, and to the left of the Name on the Electronic Case Folder.  The HLS indicator also means that the client must come into the local office for all work needing to be done for the case (of any program) because Department business must not be conducted by telephone, outside of the TAO, for HLS cases for safety and confidentiality reasons.



Clients with HLS can also be referred and engaged through the Ombuds unit.


Whether or not the client claims to be a survivor of Domestic Violence, inform them about the availability of Domestic Violence services and, for TAFDC clients, about waivers from certain TAFDC program requirements (the 24-month time limit, Work Program, and teen parent school attendance) and the possibility of claiming good cause for not cooperating with child support enforcement due to Domestic Violence.  Be sure to remind the applicant later in the application process about Domestic Violence services, waivers, and Good Cause.  Once the Request for Assistance workflow is completed, information about Domestic Violence can be accessed by going to the Domestic Violence page.

If the applicant decides not to request HLS, you must not activate the HLS indicator.  In this situation:

  1. annotate the Narrative tab and include whether or not the client met or spoke with the DV Specialist, and that the client chose not to request the HLS indicator

  2. accept the client's telephonic or written self-declaration, or completed HLS-1 Confirmation/Declination form indicating they do not want HLS on their case

At each client contact at the TAO (if the client has activated the HLS indicator) you must:

  1. give the client the option of removing the HLS indicator

  2. if the client wishes to remove the HLS indicator, the client can provide telephonic or written consent, or can submit the HLS-1 Confirmation/Declination form to reflect the request

  3. immediately remove the HLS indicator, and

  4. annotate the Narrative tab with this information

The HLS-1 Confirmation/Declination is one option to use when the client requests to activate the HLS indicator, or de-activate it once it has been activated.

If the client has not activated the HLS indicator, but later reports Domestic Violence or expresses a desire to activate the HLS, follow the procedures described in this section.





Consult the Heightened Level of Security - Confidentiality Guidelines before any information about an applicant or client is given out. In addition, check to see if the name, SSN and DOB in the ECF are red.  If so, a Heightened Level of Security exists for the case.  If either situation exists, no information can be given over the phone to the client by you or any other DTA employee unless the client is present in a TOA.  Remember that some clients requesting or approved for a Domestic Violence waiver may not request a Heightened Level of Security. In fact, for some, using a Heightened Level of Security may present a greater danger by requiring more frequent travel to the TAO to conduct business.





Americans with Disabilities Act Overview

Heightened Level of Security - Confidentiality Guidelines

Interpreter Services

Complete Request (RFA)

Request for Assistance Policy and Procedures



   Last Update: August 5, 2021