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Oregon Bulletin

September 1, 2011

 

Department of Human Services,
Children, Adults and Families Division:
Vocational Rehabilitation Services
Chapter 582

Rule Caption: Amending standards for provision of program services, definitions, and rates of payment.

Adm. Order No.: VRS 2-2011

Filed with Sec. of State: 8-12-2011

Certified to be Effective: 9-1-11

Notice Publication Date: 7-1-2011

Rules Adopted: 582-030-0050

Rules Amended: 582-001-0010, 582-030-0000, 582-030-0005, 582-030-0008, 582-030-0010, 582-030-0020, 582-030-0025, 582-030-0030, 582-030-0040, 582-050-0000, 582-050-0005, 582-050-0010, 582-050-0020, 582-050-0060, 582-060-0010, 582-060-0020, 582-070-0010, 582-070-0020, 582-070-0025, 582-070-0030, 582-070-0040, 582-070-0041, 582-070-0042, 582-070-0043, 582-070-0044

Subject: These proposed rules revise the Office of Vocational
rehabilitation Services (OVRS) provision of services and process for providing transportation, modifying vehicles, requirements for maintaining vehicle insurance, requirements for closing case files and updates definitions. The revisions more precisely describe the general purpose of these services, scope and nature of services, OVRS requirements and individual rights and responsibilities.

Rules Coordinator: Peter Fox—(503) 945-6695

582-001-0010

Definitions for Chapter 582

The following definitions apply to each division in chapter 582 of the Oregon Administrative Rules unless otherwise indicated:

(1) “Act” refers to the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (29 U.S.C. 701 et seq.).

(2) “Assistant Director” refers to the Assistant Director of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

(3) “Applicant” refers to an individual who submits an application for vocational rehabilitation services in accordance with 34 CFR 361.41(b)(2).

(4) “Assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs” refers to, as appropriate in each case:

(a) A review of existing data to determine if an individual is eligible for vocational rehabilitation services; and to assign priority for an order of selection if in effect; and

(b) To the extent necessary, the provision of appropriate assessment activities to obtain necessary additional data to make the eligibility determination and priority assignment;

(c) To the extent additional data are necessary to make a determination of the employment outcomes and the nature and scope of vocational rehabilitation services to be included in the individualized plan for employment of an eligible individual, a comprehensive assessment to determine the unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice, including the need for supported employment, of the eligible individual. This comprehensive assessment:

(A) Is limited to information that is necessary to identify the rehabilitation needs of the individual and to develop the individualized plan for employment of the eligible individual;

(B) Uses as a primary source of information, to the maximum extent possible and appropriate and in accordance with confidentiality requirements: Existing information obtained for the purposes of determining the eligibility of the individual and assigning priority for an order of selection for the individual; and Information that can be provided by the individual and, if appropriate, by the family of the individual;

(C) May include, to the degree needed to make such a determination, an assessment of the personality, interests, interpersonal skills, intelligence and related functional capacities, educational achievements, work experience, vocational aptitudes, personal and social adjustments, and employment opportunities of the individual and the medical, psychiatric, psychological, and other pertinent vocational, educational, cultural, social, recreational, and environmental factors that affect the employment and rehabilitation needs of the individual; and

(D) May include, to the degree needed, an appraisal of the patterns of work behavior of the individual and services needed for the individual to acquire occupational skills and to develop work attitudes, work habits, work tolerance, and social and behavior patterns necessary for successful job performance, including the use of work in real job situations to assess and develop the capacities of the individual to perform adequately in a work environment;

(d) Referral, for the provision of rehabilitation technology services to the individual, to assess and develop the capacities of the individual to perform in a work environment; and

(e) An exploration of the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in work situations, which must be assessed periodically during trial work experiences, including experiences in which the individual is provided appropriate supports and training.

(5) “Assistive technology device” refers to any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of an individual with a disability.

(6) “Assistive technology service” refers to any service that directly assists an individual with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device, including:

(a) The evaluation of the needs of an individual with a disability, including a functional evaluation of the individual in his or her customary environment;

(b) Purchasing, leasing, or otherwise providing for the acquisition by an individual with a disability of an assistive technology device;

(c) Selecting, designing, fitting, customizing, adapting, applying, maintaining, repairing, or replacing assistive technology devices;

(d) Coordinating and using other therapies, interventions, or services with assistive technology devices, such as those associated with existing education and rehabilitation plans and programs;

(e) Training or technical assistance for an individual with a disability or, if appropriate, the family members, guardians, advocates, or authorized representatives of the individual; and

(f) Training or technical assistance for professionals (including individuals providing education and rehabilitation services), employers, or others who provide services to, employ, or are otherwise substantially involved in the major life functions of individuals with disabilities, to the extent that training or technical assistance is necessary to the achievement of an employment outcome by an individual with a disability.

(7) “CFR” refers to the Code of Federal Regulations.

(8) “Client Assistance Program” or “CAP” refers to a federally-funded program authorized under 34 CFR 370 that is independent of OVRS and whose purpose is to provide information, advocacy, and legal representation to individuals seeking OVRS services.

(9) “Representative” refers to any person identified by the individual as being authorized to speak or act on behalf of the individual or to assist the individual any matter pertaining to services of OVRS, unless a representative has been appointed by a court to represent the individual, in which case the court-appointed representative is the individual’s representative.

(10) “Community Rehabilitation Program” or “CRP” refers to:

(a) A program that provides directly or facilitates the provision of one or more of the following vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities to enable those individuals to maximize their opportunities for employment, including career advancement:

(A) Medical, psychiatric, psychological, social, and vocational services that are provided under one management.

(B) Testing, fitting, or training in the use of prosthetic and orthotic devices.

(C) Recreational therapy.

(D) Physical and occupational therapy.

(E) Speech, language, and hearing therapy.

(F) Psychiatric, psychological, and social services, including positive behavior management.

(G) Assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs, including technicians for assessment tests.

(H) Rehabilitation technology.

(I) Job development, placement, and retention services.

(J) Evaluation or control of specific disabilities.

(K) Orientation and mobility services for individuals who are blind.

(L) Extended employment.

(M) Psychosocial rehabilitation services.

(N) Supported employment services and extended services.

(O) Services to family members if necessary to enable the applicant or eligible individual to achieve an employment outcome.

(P) Personal assistance services.

(Q) Services similar to the services described in subsections (A) through (P) of this definition, including vendors who provide training, write resumes, consult on self-employment plans, assist with a self-employed business, or write PASS plans.

(b) For the purposes of this definition, the word program means an agency, organization, or institution, or unit of an agency, organization, or institution, that provides directly or facilitates the provision of vocational rehabilitation services as one of its major functions. It does not include the prospective employer of the individual.

(11) “Comparable services and benefits” refers to:

(a) Services and benefits that are:

(A) Provided or paid for, in whole or in part, by other Federal, State, or local public agencies, by health insurance, or by employee benefits;

(B) Available to the individual at the time needed to ensure the progress of the individual toward achieving the employment outcome in the individual’s individualized plan for employment in accordance with 34 CFR 361.53; and

(C) Commensurate to the services that the individual would otherwise receive from OVRS.

(b) For the purposes of this definition, comparable benefits do not include awards and scholarships based on merit.

(12) “Competitive employment” refers to work:

(a) In the competitive labor market that is performed on a full-time or part-time basis in an integrated setting; and

(b) For which an individual is compensated at or above the minimum wage, but not less than the customary wage and level of benefits paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by individuals who are not disabled.

(13) “DHS” refers to the Department of Human Services.

(14) “Eligible individual” refers to an applicant for vocational rehabilitation services who meets the eligibility requirements of 34 CFR 361.42(a).

(15) “Employment outcome” refers to, with respect to an individual, entering or retaining full-time or, if appropriate, part-time competitive employment, as defined in OAR 582-001-0010(12), in the integrated labor market, supported employment, or any other type of employment in an integrated setting, including self-employment, telecommuting, or business ownership, that is consistent with an individual’s strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice.

(16) “Extended employment” refers to work in a non-integrated or sheltered setting for a public or private nonprofit agency or organization that provides compensation in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act.

(17) “Extended services” refers to ongoing support services and other appropriate services that are needed to support and maintain an individual with a most significant disability in supported employment and that are provided by a State agency, a private nonprofit organization, employer, or any other appropriate resource, from funds other than funds received under this part and 34 CFR part 363 after an individual with a most significant disability has made the transition from support provided by OVRS.

(18) “Extreme medical risk” refers to a probability of substantially increasing functional impairment or death if medical services, including mental health services, are not provided expeditiously.

(19) “Family member,” for purposes of receiving vocational rehabilitation services in accordance with 34 CFR 361.48(i), refers to an individual:

(a) Who either:

(A) Is a relative or guardian of an applicant or eligible individual; or

(B) Lives in the same household as an applicant or eligible individual;

(b) Who has a substantial interest in the well-being of that individual; and

(c) Whose receipt of vocational rehabilitation services is necessary to enable the applicant or eligible individual to achieve an employment outcome.

(20) “Impartial hearing officer” refers to an individual who:

(a) Is not an employee of a public agency (other than an administrative law judge, hearing examiner, or employee of an institution of higher education) -- an individual is not considered to be an employee of a public agency for the purposes of this definition solely because the individual is paid by the agency to serve as a hearing officer;

(b) Is not a member of the State Rehabilitation Council for OVRS;

(c) Has not been involved previously in the vocational rehabilitation of the applicant or eligible individual;

(d) Has knowledge of the delivery of vocational rehabilitation services, the State plan, and the Federal and State regulations governing the provision of services;

(e) Has received training with respect to the performance of official duties; and

(f) Has no personal, professional, or financial interest that would be in conflict with the objectivity of the individual.

(21) “Individual with a disability” refers to an individual:

(a) Who has a physical or mental impairment; and

(b) Whose impairment constitutes or results in a substantial impediment to employment; and

(c) Who can benefit in terms of an employment outcome from the provision of vocational rehabilitation services.

(22) “Individual with a most significant disability” refers to an eligible individual who:

(a) Has a severe mental or physical impairment that seriously limits two or more functional capacities (mobility, communication, self-care, self-direction, interpersonal skills, work tolerance, or work skills) in terms of an employment outcome; and

(b) Is expected to require two or more vocational rehabilitation services over an extended period of time to achieve or maintain a successful employment outcome.

(23) “Individual with a significant disability” refers to an eligible individual who does not qualify as an individual with a most significant disability as defined at OAR 582-001-0010(22); and

(a) The individual is currently receiving or eligible to receive Social Security Income or Social Security Disability Insurance payments; or

(b) The individual:

(A) Has a severe mental or physical impairment that seriously limits one functional capacity (mobility, communication, self-care, self-direction, interpersonal skills, work tolerance, or work skills) in terms of an employment outcome; and

(B) Is expected to require two or more vocational rehabilitation services over an extended period of time to achieve or maintain a successful employment outcome.

(24) “Integrated setting”:

(a) With respect to the provision of services, refers to a setting typically found in the community in which applicants or eligible individuals interact with non-disabled individuals other than non-disabled individuals who are providing services to those applicants or eligible individuals;

(b) With respect to an employment outcome, refers to a setting typically found in the community in which applicants or eligible individuals interact with non-disabled individuals, other than non-disabled individuals who are providing services to those applicants or eligible individuals, to the same extent that non-disabled individuals in comparable positions interact with other persons.

(25) “Maintenance” refers to monetary support provided to an individual for expenses, such as food, shelter, and clothing, that are in excess of the normal expenses of the individual and that are necessitated by the individual’s participation in an assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs or the individual’s receipt of vocational rehabilitation services under an individualized plan for employment.

(26) “Mediation” refers to the act or process of using an independent third party to act as a mediator, intermediary, or conciliator to assist persons or parties in settling differences or disputes prior to pursuing formal administrative or other legal remedies. Mediation under the program must be conducted in accordance with the requirements in 34 CFR 361.57(d) by a qualified and impartial mediator as defined in 34 CFR 361.5(b)(43).

(27) “OAR” refers to the Oregon Administrative Rules.

(28) “Ongoing support services,” as used in the definition of ‘’Supported employment’’

(a) Refers to services that are:

(A) Needed to support and maintain an individual with a most significant disability in supported employment;

(B) Identified based on a determination by OVRS of the individual’s need as specified in an individualized plan for employment; and

(C) Furnished by OVRS from the time of job placement until transition to extended services, unless post-employment services are provided following transition, and thereafter by one or more extended services providers throughout the individual’s term of employment in a particular job placement or multiple placements if those placements are being provided under a program of transitional employment;

(b) Must include an assessment of employment stability and provision of specific services or the coordination of services at or away from the worksite that are needed to maintain stability based on:

(A) At a minimum, twice-monthly monitoring at the worksite of each individual in supported employment; or

(B) If under specific circumstances, especially at the request of the individual, the individualized plan for employment provides for off-site monitoring, twice monthly meetings with the individual;

(c) Consist of:

(A) Any particularized assessment supplementary to the comprehensive assessment of rehabilitation needs;

(B) The provision of skilled job trainers who accompany the individual for intensive job skill training at the work site;

(C) Job development and training;

(D) Social skills training;

(E) Regular observation or supervision of the individual;

(F) Follow-up services including regular contact with the employers, the individuals, the parents, family members, guardians, advocates or authorized representatives of the individuals, and other suitable professional and informed advisors, in order to reinforce and stabilize the job placement;

(G) Facilitation of natural supports at the worksite;

(H) Any other service identified in the scope of vocational rehabilitation services for individuals, described in 34 CFR 361.48; or

(I) Any service similar to the foregoing services.

(29) “ORS” refers to the Oregon Revised Statutes.

(30) “OVRS” refers to the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

(31) “Parent or Guardian” refers to a person or persons having legal responsibility for the overall welfare and well-being of an individual under age 18 or a individual who, if over age 18, is considered legally incompetent.

(32) “Personal assistance services” refers to a range of services provided by one or more persons designed to assist an individual with a disability to perform daily living activities on or off the job that the individual would typically perform without assistance if the individual did not have a disability.

(33) “Qualified Personnel” means an individual licensed or certified by the state or an individual who maintains an equivalent licensure or certification from another state to make the diagnosis of an applicant’s impairment.

(34) “Physical and mental restoration services” refers to:

(a) Corrective surgery or therapeutic treatment that is likely, within a reasonable period of time, to correct or modify substantially a stable or slowly progressive physical or mental impairment that constitutes a substantial impediment to employment;

(b) Diagnosis of and treatment for mental or emotional disorders by qualified personnel in accordance with State licensure laws;

(c) Dentistry;

(d) Nursing services;

(e) Necessary hospitalization (either inpatient or outpatient care) in connection with surgery or treatment and clinic services;

(f) Drugs and supplies;

(g) Prosthetic and orthotic devices;

(h) Eyeglasses and visual services, including visual training, and the examination and services necessary for the prescription and provision of eyeglasses, contact lenses, microscopic lenses, telescopic lenses, and other special visual aids prescribed by personnel that are qualified in accordance with State licensure laws;

(i) Podiatry;

(j) Physical therapy;

(k) Occupational therapy;

(l) Speech or hearing therapy;

(m) Mental health services;

(n) Treatment of either acute or chronic medical complications and emergencies that are associated with or arise out of the provision of physical and mental restoration services, or that are inherent in the condition under treatment;

(o) Special services for the treatment of individuals with end-stage renal disease, including transplantation, dialysis, artificial kidneys, and supplies; and

(p) Other medical or medically related rehabilitation services.

(35) “Physical or mental impairment” refers to:

(a) Any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological, musculo-skeletal, special sense organs, respiratory (including speech organs), cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genitourinary, hemic and lymphatic, skin, and endocrine; or

(b) Any mental or psychological disorder such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities.

(36) “Post-employment services” refers to one or more of the services identified in 34 CFR 361.48 that are provided subsequent to the achievement of an employment outcome and that are necessary for an individual to maintain, regain, or advance in employment, consistent with the individual’s strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice.

(37) “Provider of community rehabilitation services” refers to any CRP, business, or independent contractor that is paid by OVRS to provide any service listed in OAR 582-001-0010(10).

(38) “Qualified and impartial mediator” refers to an individual who:

(a) Is not an employee of a public agency (other than an administrative law judge, hearing examiner, employee of a State office of mediators, or employee of an institution of higher education) — an individual serving as a mediator is not considered to be an employee of a public agency for the purposes of this definition solely because the individual is paid by a public agency to serve as a mediator;

(b) Is not a member of the State Rehabilitation Council for OVRS;

(c) Has not been involved previously in the vocational rehabilitation of the applicant or eligible individual;

(d) Is knowledgeable of the vocational rehabilitation program and the applicable Federal and State laws, regulations, and policies governing the provision of vocational rehabilitation services;

(e) Has been trained in effective mediation techniques consistent with any State-approved or -recognized certification, licensing, registration, or other requirements; and

(f) Has no personal, professional, or financial interest that would be in conflict with the objectivity of the individual requesting mediation during the mediation proceedings.

(39) “Rehabilitation engineering” refers to the systematic application of engineering sciences to design, develop, adapt, test, evaluate, apply, and distribute technological solutions to problems confronted by individuals with disabilities in functional areas, such as mobility, communications, hearing, vision, and cognition, and in activities associated with employment, independent living, education, and integration into the community.

(40) “Rehabilitation technology” refers to the systematic application of technologies, engineering methodologies, or scientific principles to meet the needs of, and address the barriers confronted by, individuals with disabilities in areas that include education, rehabilitation, employment, transportation, independent living, and recreation. The term includes rehabilitation engineering, assistive technology devices, and assistive technology services.

(41) “Severe mental or physical impairment” refers to the use of this term in the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.

(42) “State plan” refers to the State plan for vocational rehabilitation services submitted by OVRS under 34 CFR 361.10.

(43) “Substantial impediment to employment” refers to a physical or mental impairment that (in light of medical, psychological, vocational, educational, communication, and other related factors) hinders an individual from preparing for, entering into, engaging in, or retaining employment consistent with the individual’s unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities and capabilities.

(44) “Supported employment” refers to:

(a) Competitive employment in an integrated setting, or employment in integrated work settings in which individuals are working toward competitive employment, consistent with the strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice of the individuals with ongoing support services for individuals with the most significant disabilities:

(A) For whom competitive employment has not traditionally occurred or for whom competitive employment has been interrupted or intermittent as a result of a significant disability; and

(B) Who, because of the nature and severity of their disabilities, need intensive supported employment services from OVRS and extended services after transition as described in OAR 582-001-0010(17) to perform this work; or

(b) Transitional employment, as defined OAR 582-001-0010(47), for individuals with the most significant disabilities due to mental illness.

(45) “Supported employment services” refers to ongoing support services and other appropriate services needed to support and maintain an individual with a most significant disability in supported employment that are provided by OVRS:

(a) For a period of time not to exceed 18 months, unless under special circumstances the eligible individual and the rehabilitation counselor or coordinator jointly agree to extend the time to achieve the employment outcome identified in the individualized plan for employment; and

(b) Following transition, as post-employment services that are unavailable from an extended services provider and that are necessary to maintain or regain the job placement or advance in employment.

(46) “Transition services” refers to a coordinated set of activities for a student designed within an outcome-oriented process that promotes movement from school to post-school activities, including postsecondary education, vocational training, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation.

(47) “Transitional employment,” as used in the definition of ‘’Supported employment,’’ refers to a series of temporary job placements in competitive work in integrated settings with ongoing support services for individuals with the most significant disabilities due to mental illness. In transitional employment, the provision of ongoing support services must include continuing sequential job placements until job permanency is achieved.

(48) “Transportation” refers to travel and related expenses that are necessary to enable an applicant or eligible individual to participate in a vocational rehabilitation service, including expenses for training in the use of public transportation vehicles and systems.

(49) “Vocational rehabilitation services”:

(a) If provided to an individual, refers to those services listed in 34 CFR 361.48; and

(b) If provided for the benefit of groups of individuals, also refers to those services listed in 34 CFR 361.49.

(50) “Vocational rehabilitation training” means skill training in which the basis and focus of the training are individualized or customized. Vocational rehabilitation training may include focus on disability related issues as those issues impact the skills training. Vocational rehabilitation training can include, but is not limited to:

(a) Supported employment;

(b) Disability and related Skills training;

(c) On the job training;

(d) One-on-one specialized business training - training provided to individuals who are working to establish their own business;

(e) Customized training -- training offered by an employer to a group of individuals for the purpose of training and possibly hiring the individuals.

(51) “Vocational training” means skills training for a specific occupation.

(52) “Informed Choice” means that individuals who are applicants for vocational rehabilitation services or eligible individuals receiving such services must be active and full partners throughout the vocational rehabilitation process. Program participants must have the opportunity to make meaningful decisions during assessment for eligibility and in the selection of the employment outcome, services needed to achieve the outcome, service providers, and method of securing services. OVRS shall provide information and support services sufficient to inform each applicant and eligible individual about the availability of and opportunity to exercise informed choice.

(53) “The Individualized Plan for Employment” (IPE) is a blueprint or action plan for attaining the individual’s vocational objective. The IPE identifies services necessary to assist the individual to prepare for, secure, retain, or regain an employment outcome consistent with his or her strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests and informed choice. The IPE identifies the employment objective, approved service providers, all program costs, time frames, and the individual’s responsibilities under the plan.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.530, 344.550, 344.560, 344.570 & 344.590

Hist.: VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 2-2005, f. 4-20-05, cert. ef. 7-1-05; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 2-2008, f. & cert. ef. 3-3-08; VRS 3-2008, f. & cert. ef. 4-10-08; VRS 4-2008(Temp), f. 12-18-08, cert. ef. 12-19-08 thru 6-16-09; VRS 2-2009, f. & cert. ef. 3-27-09; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0000

General Provisions

The purposes of this division are to:

(1) Implement policies and procedures for the protection, use and release of personal information about individuals applying for or receiving OVRS services, consistent with federal statutes and regulations for vocational rehabilitation;

(2) Implement the confidentiality statutes for vocational rehabilitation in ORS 344.530(1)(b) and 344.600; and

(3) Clarify how these regulations incorporate and supplement other applicable federal and state laws and regulations.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0005

Definitions

The following definitions apply to each Rule in Division 30 unless otherwise indicated.

(1) “Administrator” means the Administrator of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

(2) “Individual” means any person who has provided information to OVRS as part of his or her application process for OVRS services or subsequent to an application

(3) “ Confidential Information” means any personally identifiable information acquired or developed by OVRS, its staff or its representatives or that identifies an individual as someone applying for or receiving services from OVRS.

(4) “ Representative” means any person identified by the individual as being authorized to speak or act on behalf of the individual or to assist the individual in any matter pertaining to services of OVRS, unless a representative has been appointed by a court to represent the individual, in which case the court-appointed representative is the individual’s representative.

(5) “Cooperative Agreement” means a written agreement between OVRS and another agency or organization which includes terms protecting confidentiality of individual’s information in keeping with the statutory and regulatory requirements of all parties to the agreement.

(6) “Designee” means any officer or employee appointed by the Director of the Department of Human Services to respond to requests for reduction or waiver of fees for public records of the Department

(7) “Director” means the Director of the Department of Human Services.

(8) “HIPAA” refers to Title II, Subtitle F of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, 42 USC 1320d et seq, and the federal regulations adopted to implement this Act.

(9) “HIV/AIDS Information” is any information covered by ORS 433.045(3) or that is likely to identify, directly or indirectly, that a client has been tested for the HIV virus or has HIV infection, antibodies to HIV, AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome) or related infections or illnesses.

(10) “Informed Written Consent” means, after receiving a thorough explanation and understanding of the purposes, limitations, recipients, and specific information to be released, an individual or, if appropriate, individual’s representative completes and signs a Department of Human Services Form 2098 (Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Non-Health Information) or DHS Form 2099 (Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Health Information), or the successors to these forms or other sufficient written authorization, releasing personal information from or to OVRS.

(11) “Parent or Guardian” means a person or persons having legal responsibility for the overall welfare and well-being of a individual under age 18 or an individual who, if over age 18, is adjudicated legally incompetent.

(12) “Parent Locator Service” means a service authorized by 42 USC 653 seeking information for the purpose of establishing parentage or establishing, setting, modifying or enforcing child support.

(13) “Person” includes any natural person, corporation, partnership, firm or association.

(14) “Photocopy(ing)” includes a photograph, microphotograph and any other reproduction on paper or film in any scale, or the process of reproducing, in the form of a photocopy, a public record.

(15) “Public Officer Privilege” means, as provided in ORS 40.270, a public officer shall not be examined as to public records determined to be exempt from disclosure under ORS 192.502(8) and (9).

(16) “Public Record” includes any writing that contains information relating to the conduct of the public’s business that is prepared, owned, used or retained by the Department regardless of physical form or characteristics.

(17) “Requestor” means a person requesting inspection, copies, or other reproduction of a public record of the Department.

(18) “Subpoena” means a written order for a witness to appear and give testimony and/or deliver named material issued.

(19) “Substance Abuse Information” means any information regulated under 42 CFR 2.1 – 2.67.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f.& cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0008

Billing Policy and Procedures

(1) An individual or an individual’s representative and the Oregon Advocacy Center staff person representing that individual may request a copy of information from their files at no cost once every 12 months. If the individual requests another copy of the same information, written summary, or explanation more frequently than once every 12 months, then OVRS may impose a reasonable, cost-based fee.

(2) OVRS shall charge for the cost of making the record available to the extent permitted by OAR 407-003-0010.

(3) All moneys received shall be handled and recorded under approved state accounting procedures.

(4) If OVRS denies an initial verbal request for waiver or reduction of fees, the requestor will submit a written request. If OVRS subsequently denies the written request for a waiver or reduction of fees, the requestor may petition the Attorney General for a review of the denial pursuant to the provisions of ORS 192.440(5) and 192.450.

(5) At the option of the Branch office that processes the requested material, the Branch manager as the Director designee may waive assessment of a fee.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f.& cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0010

Program Uses and Disclosures by OVRS

(1) All personally identifiable information regarding a individual that is obtained, generated by, or made available to OVRS, its representative or employees, shall be protected, held confidential, and is the property of OVRS and may only be used and disclosed as permitted by OAR chapter 582, division 30. Such information may not be used or disclosed in violation of any of the following laws where those laws are applicable:

(a) Oregon Administrative Rules, chapter 410, division 14, concerning Privacy of Protected Information for clients of the Department of Human Services and concerning the implementation of HIPAA;

(b) ORS 179.505 concerning written treatment records;

(c) Federal laws concerning substance abuse information as set out in 42 CFR part 2;

(d) State laws concerning HIV information as set out in ORS 433.045;

(e) State laws concerning DNA and genetic information as set out in ORS 192.537 and 192.539.

(2) Confidential information may be used and disclosed by OVRS for purposes directly connected with the administration of the vocational rehabilitation program unless prohibited by law. Except for purposes directly connected with the administration of vocational rehabilitation or as required by law, OVRS will not use or disclose any list of or names of, or any information concerning persons applying for or receiving vocational rehabilitation services. Permitted disclosures under ORS 344.600 and OAR 582-030-0010 shall include disclosures made with informed written consent of the client for the purpose of assisting the financial capacity of OVRS or the individual to pay for the rehabilitation of the individual.

(3) Except as directed by the individual under informed written consent, the individual’s information will not be disclosed outside OVRS unless:

(a) Required by federal or state law, including the exceptions to written consent requirements described in OAR 582-030-0040;

(b) Ordered by a judge, magistrate or other authorized judicial officer; or

(c) Authorized by these rules.

(4) Any information about a crime committed by any individual, or suspected abuse or neglect, or that poses a threat to the safety of the individual or others is not confidential except as provided by law.

(5) Identifiable personal information may not be shared with advisory or other bodies that do not have official responsibility for administration of the program, unless the individual gives written consent.

(6) Each affected individual shall be informed that discussion of work related information with potential employers, in connection with the job placement of an individual, is considered to be within the scope of the administration of the vocational rehabilitation program and such information may be used or disclosed to the extent allowed by law. Such information shall be limited to that which the counselor determines to be necessary to the placement process and directly related to the individual’s abilities to perform, retain, or acquire the skills to perform, specific employment.

(7) Unless prohibited by law, individual information may be released to other agencies which have cooperative agreements with OVRS without the written consent of the individual only if providing such information has a bearing on administration of the OVRS program and/or the provision of OVRS services. At time of application and at other times that individual information is being collected, OVRS shall inform the individual about situations where information is routinely released and identify the involved agencies.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 22, f. & ef. 3-5-76; VRD 3-1981, f. & ef. 12-1-81; VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0020

Release of Information to Other Agencies, Organizations, Auth­orities or Individuals

(1) DHS Form 2098 Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Non-Health Information or Form 2099 Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Health Information, or the equivalent, shall be utilized to obtain client permission to release or obtain client information. Before the client or client’s representative signs this form it must be completed so as to indicate informed consent, involved parties and timelines for obtaining or releasing specified information. For a client who has been adjudicated legally incapacitated, the parent or legal guardian must also sign the form.

(2) Each page of any document, record, or report containing OVRS client information released to any other agency, organization or person shall be imprinted with a statement that reads:

CONFIDENTIAL

This information cannot be released to any other person, agency, or organization without the prior written approval of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

(3) Release to other agencies or programs. Upon receiving the informed written consent of the individual, OVRS may release individual information to another agency or organization to assist with vocational rehabilitation services or administration -- including the financial capacity of OVRS or the individual to pay for the rehabilitation of the individual. OVRS may restrict disclosure of individual information believed to be harmful if released directly to an individual until OVRS secures written agreement from the requester that the information will be used only for the purposes authorized and will not be further released to the individual.

(4) Release for audit, evaluation, or research. OVRS may release confidential information to an organization, agency, or individual engaged in audit, evaluation, or research only for purposes directly connected with the administration of the vocational rehabilitation program, or for purposes which would significantly improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and only when OVRS is assured that:

(a) The information will be used only for the purposes authorized;

(b) The information will be released only to persons officially connected with the authorized activity;

(c) The information will not be released to the involved individual;

(d) The information will be managed in a manner to safeguard confidentiality; and

(e) The final product will not reveal the identity of any involved individual without his/her, or his/her representative’s written consent.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

[ED. NOTE: Forms referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 22, f. & ef. 3-5-76; VRD 3-1981, f. & ef. 12-1-81; VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0025

Subpoenas

(1) The administrator of OVRS is the official custodian of all records for OVRS. Any subpoena for release of an OVRS records must be directed to the administrator of OVRS at OVRS central administration.

(2) A subpoena generated or authorized by an OVRS individual or individual’s attorney to testify or release individual information is deemed to be an informed written consent from the individual, except as prohibited by law.

(3) Upon verification that an individual’s attorney is authorized to issue the subpoena on behalf of the individual, OVRS employees may communicate with the individual’s attorney within the scope of the request to the extent provided under OAR 582-030-0030.

(4) Without a valid written authorization from the individual or an order issued by a judge, magistrate or other authorized judicial officer, OVRS employees may not provide the individual information in response to a subpoena not generated by or authorized by an individual or his/her attorney.

(5) Any OVRS employee who appears in response to a subpoena not generated by or authorized by the individual or his/her attorney and without a valid written authorization must read the following statement at the start of the appearance instead of providing documents or testifying about an individual: “Confidentiality policy imposed by state law, including ORS 344.600, and federal regulation requires OVRS to invoke public officer privilege under ORS 40.270 — Evidence Rule 509, with respect to the release of client information or provision of testimony not requested or authorized by the client or the client’s representative.” If after making this statement to a judge, magistrate or other authorized judicial officer, the judge, magistrate or other judicial officer issues an order, the OVRS employee shall comply with the order, including providing any documents or testimony within the scope of the order.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.530, 344.540(1) & 344.600

Hist.: VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0030

Release to Clients, Parents, Guardians and Legal Representatives

(1) Upon written request using DHS Form 2093, its equivalent, or its successor, the requested information from the OVRS case file shall be released to the individual or, as appropriate, the individual’s representative, in a timely manner, with the following exceptions:

(a) Case file information obtained from another agency or organization, treatment records, and psychological evaluations may only be released under the conditions established by the treatment provider or source of the records or under the conditions established by agreement between OVRS and the treatment provider or source of the records.

(b) If an individual or (as appropriate) a parent, guardian, or other representative presents a written request to review medical or psychological reports from the individual’s OVRS file and the counselor believes direct release of such information to any of the above persons may be harmful to the individual, the following procedures must be followed:

(A) The counselor will contact the practitioner(s) who wrote the report(s) to request an opinion as to whether the practitioner believes direct release of the information would be harmful to the individual; or, if a practitioner is unavailable;

(B) The counselor will obtain an opinion from the appropriate office medical or psychological consultant as to whether the consultant believes direct release of the information would be harmful to the individual; the consultant is to record his/her opinion on the Medical/Psychological Review Record in the medical jacket (R-114);

(C) If the practitioner or consultant states that direct release would not be harmful, the counselor will release the requested OVRS information directly to the individual or (as appropriate) to the individual’s parent, guardian, or designated representative;

(D) If the practitioner or consultant states that direct release would be harmful, the counselor will request but not require the individual to designate an appropriate and qualified physician or psychologist of the individual’s choosing for the purpose of reviewing and interpreting the contents of the report(s) to the individual. If the individual agrees, the counselor will schedule the appointment, mail copies of the report(s) to the practitioner, and if the individual so requests, execute an Authorization for Purchase to pay the practitioner for an office visit at the OVRS current approved rate of payment.

(E) Medical, psychological, or other information that OVRS determines may be harmful to the individual may not be released directly to the individual, but if release is allowed under these rules, must be provided to the individual through a third party chosen by the individual, which may include, among others, an advocate, a family member, a qualified medical or mental health professional, unless a representative has been appointed by court to represent the individual in which case the information must be released to the court-appointed representative.

(2) Informed written consent from the individual is required for the release of mental health or substance abuse information to a parent or guardian for any individual age 14 or over.

(3) Informed written consent from the individual is required for the release of general medical information to a parent or guardian for any individual age 15 or over.

(4) Informed written consent from the individual is required for the release of any information about sexually transmitted diseases or birth control to a parent or guardian for any individual regardless of age.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 22, f. & ef. 3-5-76; VRD 3-1981, f. & ef. 12-1-81; VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0040

Exceptions to Written Consent Requirements

(1) Required Reporting and Response to Investigations:

(a) OVRS employees must report to the appropriate authorities abuse of individuals age 65 and over, ORS 124.060, under the age of 18, ORS 419B.010, individuals 18 age or over with developmental disabilities or mental illness, ORS 430.765, and residents of long-term care facilities, ORS 441.640;

(b) OVRS must release the individual’s information if required by federal law or in response to investigations in connection with law enforcement, fraud or abuse (unless expressly prohibited by federal or state laws or regulations, such as OAR 410-014-0020(2)(j) which identifies limits on disclosures of protected health information to law enforcement) or in response to an order issued by a judge, magistrate or other authorized judicial officer.

(2) Response to Child Support Enforcement. A person authorized under federal law may access information for the Federal Parent Locator Service under ORS 25.265.

(3) OVRS may release an individual’s information to protect the individual or others when the individual poses a threat to his or her safety or to the safety of others.

(4) For Deceased Persons:

(a) Vital Statistics. These rules do not restrict the disclosure of OVRS identifying information relating to the death of an individual under laws requiring the collection of such vital statistics or permitting inquiry into the cause of death;

(b) Consent by Personal Representative. Other requirements of these rules notwithstanding, if written consent to such disclosure is required, that consent may be given by an executor, administrator or other personal representative appointed under applicable state law. If there is no such appointment, consent may be given by the spouse or other responsible member of the individual’s family.

(5) Participation in State Agency Information Exchange: OVRS will participate in the State Shared Information System (SIS) or Performance Reporting Information System (PRISM), and DHS information sharing to the extent allowed by and consistent with state and federal law and/or regulations. Where the individual’s authorization is required, OVRS may obtain informed written consent using forms specific to these information exchanges.

(6) OVRS may disclose the minimum information necessary for internal OVRS administrative purposes to the Department of Human Services; federal Rehabilitation Services Administration; or other state or federal agencies with regulatory authority over OVRS or administrative responsibilities necessary for OVRS services.

[Publications: Publications referenced are available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 4-1991, f. & cert. ef. 12-13-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-12-04; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-030-0050

The Individual’s Right to Amend Records

An individual who believes that information in the record of services is inaccurate or misleading may request that OVRS amend the information. OVRS is not required to amend the record of services. If OVRS does not amend the information, the participant may prepare an amending statement and request that OVRS insert the statement into the record of services.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-050-0000

Referrals and Applications

(1) Referrals to and applications for vocational rehabilitation services provided by OVRS shall be handled promptly and equitably.

(2) OVRS shall establish timelines for making a good faith effort to inform individuals referred to or seeking services from OVRS of application requirements and to gather information necessary to initiate an assessment for determining eligibility and priority for services.

(3) Assessment to determine eligibility and priority for services shall commence as soon as an application for services is received and to the maximum extent possible shall be expedited through use of existing information, including school, Social Security, medical and family member records.

(4) An individual is considered to have submitted an application only when all the following conditions have been satisfied:

(a) The individual or the individual’s representative, as appropriate, has completed and signed an agency application form or has otherwise requested services;

(b) The individual or the individual’s representative, as appropriate, has provided the information necessary to initiate an assessment for eligibility; and

(c) The individual is available to complete the assessment process.

(5) Once OVRS has received an application for vocational rehabilitation services, including applications for vocational rehabilitation services made through common intake procedures in One-Stop centers established under section 121 of the federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998, an eligibility determination must be made within 60 days, unless:

(a) Exceptional and unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of OVRS preclude making an eligibility determination within 60 days and OVRS and the individual agree to a specific extension of time; or

(b) A trial work experience or exploration of the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in work situations is carried out in accordance with 34 CFR 361.42(e) or, if appropriate, an extended evaluation is carried out in accordance with 34 CFR 361.42(f).

 (6) OVRS shall not close an applicant’s record of services prior to making an eligibility determination unless the applicant declines to participate in, or is unavailable to complete, an assessment for determining eligibility and priority for services, and OVRS has made a reasonable number of attempts to contact the applicant or, if appropriate, the applicant’s representative, to encourage the applicant’s participation.

(7) The length of time between eligibility determination and the signing of the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) by the VR counselor and the individual or the individual’s representative as appropriate shall not exceed 180 days (365 days if the plan goal is occupation through self-employment). If the State invokes an Order of Selection, the length of time begins once the client individual is pulled from the waitlist. The counselor must obtain supervisor approval to extend the time beyond 180 days (365 days if the plan goal is occupation through self-employment) and document in the case record the reason and expected length of time for the extension. Exceptions to this time frame include:

(a) Mutual agreement by the individual and counselor to extend the time, taking into consideration the unique needs of the individual;

(b) Unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of either the counselor or individual;

(c) The need for extended planning and assessment for IPE development for Youth Transition Program students.

(d) Individual involvement in the office dispute resolution process addressing issues critical to plan development;

(e) Lack of cooperation by the individual; or

(f) Lack of agreement by either the individual or counselor over the proposed IPE.

(8) OVRS shall make information regarding application requirements and forms available statewide.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.570

Hist.: VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 2-2006, f. & cert. ef. 8-1-06; VRS 3-2009, f. & cert. ef. 3-27-09; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-050-0005

Trial Work Experiences and Extended Evaluations

(1) Trial work experiences for individuals with significant disabilities.

(a) Prior to any determination that an individual with a disability is incapable of benefiting from vocational rehabilitation services in terms of an employment outcome because of the severity of that individual’s disability, OVRS shall conduct an exploration of the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in realistic work situations to determine whether or not there is clear and convincing evidence to support such a determination.

(b) OVRS shall develop a written plan to assess periodically the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in work situations through the use of trial work experiences, which must be provided in the most integrated setting possible, consistent with the informed choice and rehabilitation needs of the individual.

(c) Trial work experiences include supported employment, on-the-job training, and other experiences using realistic work settings.

(d) Trial work experiences must be of sufficient variety and over a sufficient period of time for OVRS to determine that:

(A) There is sufficient evidence to conclude that the individual can benefit from the provision of vocational rehabilitation services in terms of an employment outcome; or

(B) There is clear and convincing evidence that the individual is incapable of benefiting from vocational rehabilitation services in terms of an employment outcome due to the severity of the individual’s disability.

(e) OVRS shall provide appropriate supports, including assistive technology devices and services and personal assistance services, to accommodate the rehabilitation needs of the individual during the trial work experiences.

(2) Extended evaluation for certain individuals with significant disabilities.

(a) Under limited circumstances if an individual cannot take advantage of trial work experiences or if options for trial work experiences have been exhausted before OVRS is able to make the determinations described in OAR 582-050-0005(1)(d), OVRS will conduct an extended evaluation to make these determinations.

(b) During the extended evaluation period, vocational rehabilitation services must be provided in the most integrated setting possible, consistent with the informed choice and rehabilitation needs of the individual.

(c) During the extended evaluation period, OVRS will develop a written plan for providing services necessary to make a determination under OAR 582-050-0005(1)(d).

(3) During the extended evaluation period, OVRS provides only those services that are necessary to make the determinations described in OAR 582-050-0005(1)(d). Extended evaluation is used only until the eligibility determination can be made and may not exceed 18 months.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530 & 344.570

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 3-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-050-0010

General Provisions

(1) Eligibility requirements are applied without regard gender, race, creed, color, religion, ethnicity or national origin, nature or severity of disability, age, sexual orientation, residency or political ideation. Unless otherwise stated in the context, the rules in OAR 582-050 pertain only to Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

(2) Except for individuals whose impairments fall within the definition of legal blindness, or are of a rapidly progressive nature leading to legal blindness, OVRS shall not exclude any group of individuals from eligibility for services solely on the basis of type of disability or impairment.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 3-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-050-0020

Criteria

Applicants must meet the following conditions before they may be “eligible” for Vocational Rehabilitation Services:

(1) A determination by qualified personnel that the applicant has a physical or mental impairment.

(2) A determination by qualified personnel that the applicant’s physical or mental impairment constitutes or results in a substantial impediment to employment for the applicant.

(3) A determination by a qualified vocational rehabilitation counselor employed by OVRS that the applicant requires vocational rehabilitation services to prepare for, secure, retain, or regain employment consistent with the applicant’s unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice.

(4) A presumption, in accordance with OAR 582-050-0020(5), that the applicant can benefit in terms of an employment outcome from the provision of vocational rehabilitation services.

(5) Presumption of benefit. OVRS presumes that an applicant who meets the eligibility requirements OARS 582-050-0020(1) and (2) can benefit in terms of an employment outcome unless OVRS demonstrates, based on clear and convincing evidence, that the applicant is incapable of benefiting in terms of an employment outcome from vocational rehabilitation services due to the severity of the applicant’s disability.

(6) Presumption of eligibility for Social Security recipients and beneficiaries. Any applicant who has been determined eligible for Social Security benefits under Title II or Title XVI of the Social Security Act is:

(a) Presumed eligible for vocational rehabilitation services under OAR 582-050-0020(1) and (2); and

(b) Considered an individual with a significant disability as defined in 34 CFR 361.5(b) (31).

(7) If an applicant for vocational rehabilitation services asserts that he or she is eligible for Social Security benefits under Title II or Title XVI of the Social Security Act (and, therefore, is presumed eligible for vocational rehabilitation services under OAR 582-050-0020(6)), but is unable to provide appropriate evidence, such as an award letter, to support that assertion, OVRS must verify the applicant’s eligibility under Title II or Title XVI of the Social Security Act by contacting the Social Security Administration. This verification must be made within a reasonable period of time that enables OVRS to determine the applicant’s eligibility for vocational rehabilitation services within 60 days of the individual submitting an application for services in accordance with 34 CFR 361.41(b)(2).

(8) Any applicant who is presumed eligible under OAR 582-050-0020(6) must require vocational rehabilitation services and intend to achieve an employment outcome that is consistent with the applicant’s unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice.

 (9) Interim Eligibility for Supported Employment recipients: OVRS may make an interim determination of eligibility for an applicant eligible for, or receiving, Supported Employment services when:

(a) The applicant was referred expressly for Supported Employment Services; The applicant clearly demonstrates a high likelihood of eligibility for vocational rehabilitation services based on available data (e.g. records from county mental health programs, Seniors and Persons with Disabilities or other sources);

(b) The applicant is someone who has not maintained, or is not expected to maintain, competitive employment through the provision of traditional rehabilitation services.

(c) There is reasonable expectation that the applicant will be competitively employable with provision of rehabilitation services and on-going support;

(d) The supported-service provider has accepted the applicant; and

(e) There is evidence in writing of the availability of on-going support services adequate to maintain employment for the applicant. Services provided during interim eligibility are those available within the Supported Employment Program (e.g. community based situational assessment, job development, job training, transportation and other goods or services required to secure and maintain employment). If OVRS cannot establish eligibility within 60 days, services may be interrupted or the case may be closed. If information is insufficient to determine eligibility after 60 days, OVRS shall either place the case in delayed status, with the agreement of the participant, or close the case as appropriate. OVRS may reopen closed supported employment cases in the general program and enter extended evaluation.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 3-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-050-0060

Residency

(1) There is no requirement for duration of residence in Oregon as part of the determination of eligibility.

(2) OVRS may provide services to an otherwise eligible individual, available and able to participate in services leading to an employment outcome, if the individual is:

(a) Currently living in the State of Oregon, regardless of duration; or

(b) Currently and legally employable in the State of Oregon and seeking services to retain or advance in employment with the same employer; or

(c) All of the following apply:

(A) The individual is currently living in a state not in an Order of Selection;

(B) The vocational rehabilitation office closest to the individual’s residence is an OVRS office; and

(C) The individual is not in the state for the sole purpose of receiving vocational rehabilitation services.

(3) OVRS may, through mutual agreement, cooperate with another state’s Vocational Rehabilitation Agency in the implementation or supervision of planned services of an Individualized Plan for Employment.

(4) Reasonable effort is made to assure that duplicate services are not provided concurrently in more than one state VR Agency nor shall more than one file per individual be open and active within OVRS.

(5) When an individual in open plan status establishes residence in another state and is no longer available to participate actively with the Oregon case-carrying counselor in the provision of services, the counselor may:

(a) Negotiate with the Vocational Rehabilitation Agency of the new state-of-residence to obtain assistance in supervision of the OVRS services needed to complete the plan and obtain employment; or

(b) Close the case file ‘other than rehabilitated’ due to the individual being ‘unavailable for services.’ If requested by the individual, the office may provide copies of appropriate in-file data to the vocational rehabilitation agency of the new state-of-residence.

(6) The office may close an individual’s case file when the individual relocates outside the state of Oregon if:

(a) The individual is not in plan status; or

(b) The individual does not meet Residency criteria.

(7) OVRS may retain the case file of an individual who relocates outside of Oregon if the individual is in open plan status at the time of relocation and remains available to participate actively with the Oregon case-carrying counselor.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 4-1981, f. & ef. 12-1-81; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2005, f. & cert. ef. 1-11-05; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-060-0010

Termination of Services Because of Ineligi­bility

(1) Case closure shall occur when OVRS determines that the individual does not meet one or more of the following eligibility criteria:

(a) No disabling condition;

(b) No impediment to employment;

(c) Does not require vocational rehabilitation services; or

(d) Disability too severe to benefit from services.

(2) OVRS shall make the ineligibility determination only after providing an opportunity for full consultation with the individual or, as appropriate, with the individual’s representative.

(3) Ineligibility due to ‘too severe to benefit’. Prior to any determination that an individual with a disability is incapable of benefiting from vocational rehabilitation services, OVRS shall conduct an exploration of the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in realistic work situations to determine whether or not there is clear and convincing evidence to support such a determination.

(a) OVRS shall develop a written plan to assess the individual’s abilities, capabilities, and capacity to perform in work situations through the use of trial work experiences.

(b)Trial work experiences:

(i) Shall be in the most integrated setting possible, consistent with the informed choice and rehabilitation needs of the individual;

(ii) Include supported employment, on-the-job training, and other experiences using realistic work settings; and

(iii) Shall be of sufficient variety and over a sufficient period of time for the designated State unit to determine that:

(A) There is sufficient evidence to conclude that the individual can benefit from the provision of vocational rehabilitation services in terms of an employment outcome; or

(B) There is clear and convincing evidence that the individual is incapable of benefiting from vocational rehabilitation services.

(c) OVRS shall provide appropriate supports, including assistive technology devices and services and personal assistance services, to accommodate the rehabilitation needs of the individual during the trial work experiences.

(4) OVRS shall notify the individual in writing of file closure due to ineligibility. As necessary the office shall supplement notification by other appropriate modes of communication consistent with the informed choice of the individual. Notification shall include:

(a) Notice that the office is closing the individual’s case file;

(b) The rationale for the ineligibility determination; and

(c) Dispute resolution information regarding the mediation and impartial fair hearing appeal process, as well as contact information about for the Client Assistance Program (CAP).

(5) The office shall refer the individual to other available programs under the Workforce Investment Act that address the individual’s training or employment-related needs.

(6) If the office determines the individual to be incapable of achieving an employment outcome, the office shall:

(a) Refer the individual to local extended employment providers; and

(b) Review the individual’s file within 12 months. The individual or, if appropriate the individual’s representative, may thereafter request subsequent annual reviews. The office needs not conduct the review if:

(A) The individual has refused the review;

(B) The individual is no longer present in the State;

(C) The individual’s whereabouts are unknown; or

(D) The individual’s medical condition is rapidly progressive or terminal.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 2-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRD 2-1993, f. & cert. ef. 9-15-93; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-060-0020

Termination of Services After Eligibility

(1) Termination of Services — ‘Other Than Rehabilitated’.

(a) The office may close an individual’s file when the individual fails to achieve an employment outcome for the following reasons:

(A) Death;

(B) Ineligibility;

(C) Extended services for Supported Employment not available despite exploration of all types of extended supports;

(D) Individual fails to cooperate with or fails to make suitable progress toward developing or completing necessary steps in the IPE within the agreed-upon timeframes;

(E) Individual is institutionalized or otherwise unavailable for services;

(F) Individual received VR services and was placed in non-integrated, non-competitive work setting;

(G) The office is unable to locate or contact the individual;

(H) Individual has refused necessary services or chooses not to participate in necessary OVRS programs;

(I) Individual is receiving services from another agency and no longer requires the office’s services; or

(J) Other reason as documented by the office.

(b) The office may close the file of a presumed-eligible individual if:

(A) The file documents clear and convincing evidence that the individual is incapable of benefiting from services; or

(B) The individual meets the criteria for termination of services under 582-060-0020(1)(a).

(c) The office shall make a closure determination only after providing an opportunity for full consultation with the individual or, as appropriate, with the individual’s representative. The individual’s involvement is not required when:

(A) The individual refuses to participate;

(B) The individual is no longer present in the state;

(C) The individual’s whereabouts are unknown; or

(D) The individual’s medical condition is rapidly progressive or terminal.

(d) All notifications of closure shall include:

(A) Notice that the office is closing the case;

(B) The rationale for the closure; and

(C) Dispute resolution information regarding the mediation and impartial fair hearing appeal process, as well as referral to information about the Client Assistance Program (CAP).

(2) Termination of Services — Rehabilitated:

(a) Closure of an individual’s file as ‘Rehabilitated’ requires documentation that:

(A) The individual has achieved the employment outcome identified in by the IPE, consistent with the individual’s strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests and informed choice;

(B) The individual has maintained the employment outcome for an appropriate period of time, not less than 90 days, sufficient to ensure stability in the position without further vocational rehabilitation services;

(C) The individual and counselor consider the employment outcome to be satisfactory and agree the that individual is performing consistent with goal identified in the IPE; and

(D) The office informs the individual in writing, supplemented through other appropriate modes of communication as necessary, of the availability of post-employment services.

(b) The office shall provide notice to an individual that OVRS is closing the file ‘Rehabilitated’. The notification shall:

(A) Be in writing supplemented, as necessary, through appropriate modes of communication;

(B) Inform the individual that OVRS is closing the case as ‘Rehabilitated’;

(C) Provide the rationale for the decision; and

(D) Include dispute resolution information regarding the mediation and impartial fair hearing appeal process and the Client Assistance Program (CAP)

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 2-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1991, f. & cert. ef. 9-11-91; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0010

General Policy

NOTE: For community rehabilitation programs and medical or related services refer also to OAR 582-010, 582-075 and 582-080.

It is the policy of the OVRS to reimburse vendors who provide previously-authorized services and/or supplies to persons who qualify for such services.

(1) Vendors shall be paid in accordance with the lesser of:

(a) The vendor’s usual charge for such service, i.e., that fee for service which the vendor under ordinary circumstances charges to the general public for such services; or

(b) A pre-determined charge that has been negotiated between the vendor and an agency person authorized to consummate agreements between this agency and the vendor.

(2) In addition to any such general contracts or agreements, actual services to individuals must be specifically prior authorized and are not considered approved or billable until the vendor receives a completed Agency Authorization for Purchase (AFP) form or its equivalent, listing specific prior authorized services and estimated billable amounts, signed by the appropriate agency representative(s):

(a) Only in extreme emergencies may services be prior authorized verbally and any such verbal authorization must be documented promptly and followed with a written AFP within 72 hours;

(b) Apparent fraud, misrepresentation or substantial discrepancies between services rendered and billed amounts shall be investigated and, as appropriate, legal steps taken to prevent or recover overpayments.

(3) Except as specified in OAR 582-070-0010(4), Rehabilitation Services funds will not be expended before OVRS determines that “comparable benefits and services” are not available to meet, in whole or in part, the cost of such services, unless such a determination would interrupt or delay:

(a) The progress of the individual toward achieving the employment outcome identified in the Individualized Plan for Employment;

(b) An immediate job placement; or

(c) The provision of vocational rehabilitation services to any individual who is determined to be at extreme medical risk, based on medical evidence provided by appropriate qualified medical personnel.

(4) The following vocational rehabilitation services are exempt from a determination of the availability of comparable services and benefits:

(a) Assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs;

(b) Counseling and guidance, including information and support services to assist an individual in exercising informed choice;

(c) Referral and other services to secure needed services from other agencies, including other components of the statewide workforce investment system, if those services are not available from OVRS;

(d) Job-related services, including job search and placement assistance, job retention services, follow-up services, and follow-along services;

(e) Rehabilitation Technology, including telecommunications, and other technological aids and devices.

(f) Post-employment services consisting of any of the services in OAR 582-070-0010(4)(a)–(e); and

(5) Purchases shall be of the most reasonable and satisfactory quality at the lowest available cost, subject to supervisory and/or administrative review and/or approval prior to authorization; accordingly, OVRS reserves the right to establish upper limits on the utilization of existing services, subject to an exception process.

(6) Preliminary diagnostic assessment is limited to a review of existing data and such additional data as is necessary to determine eligibility or, for Rehabilitation Services, to assign priority for order of selection for service (when appropriate). Comprehensive assessment and/or extended evaluation services may be provided only until eligibility/ineligibility or nature and scope of needed Rehabilitation Services can be determined. Additionally, other services are available (including the use of Rehabilitation Technology services, as appropriate) to determine the nature, scope and types of services needed to attain a specific vocational rehabilitation objective of the eligible individual. Continued eligibility is contingent upon reasonable progress by the individual toward attainment of measurable intermediate objectives within time-lines arrived at and agreed to through joint counselor/individual development of the plan and any amendments thereto.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1992, f. & cert. ef. 4-20-92; VRD 4-1993, f. & cert. ef. 11-1-93; VRS 2-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-9-04; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2009(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 2-11-09 thru 8-9-09; Administrative correction 8-21-09; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0020

Specific Policies

Specific rules pertain to the provision of the following services:

(1) On-the-Job Training:

(a) Payment to on-the-job trainers/employers for training services shall be negotiated at the lowest reasonable level and shall always be considered as reimbursement for actual expenses and/or trainer time; the trainer/employer cannot expect to make a profit from such payments;

(b) Offset against an individual’s wages shall be negotiated with the trainer/employer on a mutual sharing basis at the lowest reasonable level to adequately pay the individual for his/her productive work efforts with the trainer/employer ultimately paying the entire wage. Total length of the training program and length of OVRS involvement in payments shall be negotiated on the basis of the complexity of the training and the amount of relevant skill and knowledge the individual possesses prior to entering training.

(2) Training: Educational and training services, except on-the-job training, must be purchased from public educational organizations in Oregon. Exceptions are authorized only when:

(a) No publicly-supported school provides the courses necessary for the individual’s needs in order to reach the vocational objective; or

(b) The individual cannot utilize publicly-supported schools because of his or her disability; or

(c) OVRS’s financial participation in the plan is no greater than if the individual had enrolled at the nearest appropriate publicly-supported school; or

(d) The net cost to Oregon governmental agencies is significantly less; or

(e) The training services for the individual will be significantly delayed.

(3) Vocational training: Referrals for vocational training may be made only to the following schools or programs:

(a) A school that has accreditation recognized by the United States Department of Education;

(b) A school has been approved by the Oregon Student Assistance Commission through the Office of Degree Authorization to offer and confer degrees in Oregon;

(c) A community college;

(d) A state institution of higher education within the Oregon University System;

(e) The Oregon Health and Science University.

(f) A career school licensed under ORS 345.010 to 345.450

(g) An apprenticeship program that is registered with the State Apprenticeship and Training Council

(4) Maintenance: OVRS shall only pay or provide for maintenance expenses consistent with the definition of this term at OAR 582-001-0010(25) and 34 CFR 361.5(b) (35).

(5) Clothing Purchases: Clothing purchases may be authorized if the need is a result of participation by the individual in a rehabilitation program and the individual does not possess sufficient financial resources to provide for these expenses. These must be appropriate in type and in a price range, comparable to clothing items normally used by persons engaged in similar rehabilitation, training or employment settings.

(6) Transportation Services:

(a) OVRS may provide transportation services if the services are necessary to enable the applicant or eligible individual to participate in required rehabilitation services.

(b) Selection of transportations services shall:

(A) Give preference to the most inexpensive alternative as determined by OVRS; and

(B) Take into consideration the circumstances and special needs of the individual.

(d) Moving and relocation expenses. OVRS may authorize moving and relocation expenses when the office has determined that it is less costly than having the individual commute for employment or training.

(e) Routine vehicle maintenance. It is the owner’s responsibility to maintain a private vehicle. OVRS does not pay for routine costs associated with maintenance of a vehicle. OVRS may make an exception if OVRS determines circumstances justify vehicle maintenance.

(f) Travel and related expenses for personal assistance. OVRS may provide travel and related expenses for personal assistance services if such services are necessary to enable the individual to travel to participate in a vocational rehabilitation assessment or service.

(7) Vehicle Insurance: OVRS does not generally pay for vehicle insurance. Oregon law requires insurance to operate a vehicle and it is an ongoing maintenance expense.

(a) OVRS does not pay for vehicle insurance unless exceptional circumstances necessitate assistance to reduce a transportation barrier. OVRS may authorize full or partial payment only if the office determines auto liability insurance is necessary for participation in vocational rehabilitation services and supports the least expensive transportation option.

(b) The individual shall be responsible for insurance for a vehicle purchased or modified by OVRS and for insurance on vehicular adaptive equipment

(c) If the insurance premium increases, or will increase, OVRS may pay for an increase in the premium for minimum vehicle liability insurance coverage required under Oregon law.

(d) OVRS may pay for the full premium amount for minimum vehicle liability insurance coverage required under Oregon state law if the office determines that payment is appropriate. OVRS may pay the full premium amount for up to 60 days from the start of employment.

(e) Authorization of full or partial payment for vehicle insurance requires that:

(A) Payment for vehicle insurance supports the least expensive transportation alternative for the individual;

(B) The individual owns the insured vehicle. If the individual is a minor the individual’s parents or legal guardians shall own the insured vehicle; and

(C) The individual, or minor individual’s parents or guardians, has a current valid Oregon driver’s license.

(8) Travel: When an individual’s travel requires lodging and meals, payment for lodging and meals shall be based on the definition of maintenance under 582-001-0010(25) and shall not exceed the current federal GSA domestic per diem rates for the state in which the lodging occurred.

(a) The per diem rate used shall be based on the rate for the city in which the individual lodges, or the rate for the city closest to where the individual lodges.

(b) Unless the individual uses a personal vehicle for the needed transportation, reservations shall be made through the state travel agency.

(c) If the individual utilizes a service animal; OVRS may provide payment for the lodging of the service animal.

(d) In those instances in which the federal per diem rate is insufficient to cover the cost of lodging, or the individual has a legitimate need for more costly lodging, payment may exceed the federal per diem rate.

(9) Community Rehabilitation Programs’ (CRP) Services.

NOTE: Refer also to OAR 582-010.

(a) State-wide rates are intended to pay only the anticipated cost of standard rehabilitation services. This fee schedule may be adjusted for a specific CRP to reflect non-standard types or levels of service, or statewide for standard service, if a significant increase or decrease in the actual cost of serving individuals occurs;

(b) For a CRP operated under private auspices, fees may be negotiated taking into consideration costs such as buildings, staffing and equipment. For a publicly owned and operated CRP (e.g., state or county owned or operated) fees, if any, must be based upon and not exceed actual costs.

(10) Extended Evaluation: OVRS shall provide only those services authorized under OAR 582-050-0005.

(11) Personal Care Assistance (PCA). A personal care assistant is provided only when necessary to allow an individual to benefit from other rehabilitation services, including assessment, and when the individual is not entitled to PCA services from another source:

(a) Participant as Employer: The participant, in most cases, as the employer of the personal care assistant may be reimbursed for necessary PCA services required to participate in rehabilitation services;

(b) Third Party Vendor: Direct payment to the PCA vendor by OVRS requires prior approval in addition to the requirements of Oregon Administrative Rules Chapter 582, Office 10;

(c) Written Contract: In most instances the individual is to be the employer of his/her own personal care assistant. OVRS may assist the individual to establish an appropriate written contract with the provider.

(12) Interpreter Service: OVRS provides interpreter service only when necessary to assist the individual to derive full benefit from other rehabilitation services:

(a) Limitation: To be provided by OVRS only when “comparable benefits” are not available;

(b) For the Deaf and Hearing Impaired: OVRS gives preference to using interpreters certified by the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf and/or one who is on the approved vendor list of the State Association of the Deaf. When deemed mutually acceptable by the individual and the counselor, another interpreter may be utilized;

(c) Regional Resources: Oregon Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services (ODHHS) may be used as a resource to both individuals and staff for securing interpreters.

 (13) Other Support Services Providers: May be selected for specific skills needed. Where provider licenses, insurance, certificates and state or local codes are indicated OVRS reasonably attempts to assure that appropriate levels are met before authorizing services from the provider. (See OAR 582-080 for additional rules on vendor selection.)

(14) Vendor Insurance: Providers of services shall obtain and maintain insurance as required by law for that provider; additionally, where OVRS is providing for services, appropriate levels of personal, automobile, professional and general liability insurance may be required, depending on the type of service.

(15) Private vehicle maintenance is primarily the responsibility of the owner. The office does not pay for insurance or associated expenses such as registration costs. In exceptional circumstances, as determined by OVRS, the office may make an exception.

 (16) Occupational Licenses, Tools and Equipment for Training and/or Employment:

(a) May be provided when required for either extended evaluation or when an individual is in plan status, including post employment. OVRS accepts no responsibility for individual lease/rental agreements or the leased/rented items other than to reimburse the individual for such prior authorized expenditures;

(b) Repossessed items shall be used whenever appropriate and available;

(c) Except for personally prescribed items, title/ownership of an OVRS purchased (or jointly purchased) item is held by OVRS (or jointly with OVRS) until case closure when ownership may be transferred to the individual for non-expendable items deemed by OVRS to be needed for continued success in the individual’s program.

(17) Land and/or Stationary Buildings: Are never purchased by OVRS as a service to an individual. Existing buildings may be modified when necessary to enable an eligible individual to attain a vocational plan goal. No permanent additions or weight bearing partitions are to be erected as services to individuals.

(18) Rehabilitation Technology Services: May be applied at any time during rehabilitation services to address barriers to the individual’s participation in evaluation, training, and employment:

(a) OVRS shall ensure that rehabilitation technology service providers are qualified in the areas of engineering skills and/or technology required for a given service. Selected Community Rehabilitation Programs’ Approvals may include rehabilitation technology services, when State Standards for Approvals are met for rehabilitation technology services;

(b) Rehabilitation technology services are exempt from a determination of the availability of comparable benefits. All reasonably available comparable services shall be used before authorizing expenditure by OVRS. Personal services contracts for rehabilitation technology services require field services manager approval prior to implementation.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1992, f. & cert. ef. 4-20-92; VRD 4-1993, f. & cert. ef. 11-1-93; VRD 1-1996(Temp), f. 2-26-96, cert. ef. 3-1-96; VRS 1-2003, f. & cert. ef. 9-23-03; VRS 2-2003, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-03; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 2-2008, f. & cert. ef. 3-3-08; VRS 3-2008, f. & cert. ef. 4-10-08; VRS 1-2009(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 2-11-09 thru 8-9-09; Administrative correction 8-21-09; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0025

Vehicle Purchase/Vehicle Modification

(1) The following definitions apply to this rule:

(a) “Approved Vendor” means a dealer recognized by OVRS as an approved retailer or installer of specified devices;

(b) “Qualified Mechanic” means; American Standard Automotive or American Standard Engineering certified;

(c) “Qualified Vehicle Modification Evaluation” means an evaluation performed by a licensed occupational therapist;

(d) “Reasonable transportation alternatives” include but are not limited to:

(A) Car repairs to a vehicle already owned;

(B) Use of mass transit or community transportation;

(C) Moving the individual to a new area;

(D) Assistance from family members, volunteers, paid drivers or attendants;

(E) Car pools; or

(F) Accommodations made by individual’s employer.

(e) “Vehicle modifications” are services involving the purchase and installation of adaptations or devices intended to meet the employment-related transportation needs of individuals.

(2) OVRS does not provide funds for individuals to lease or purchase motor vehicles that require a license to operate. The OVRS administrator may grant an exception if no reasonable transportation alternatives are available and the office has made the following determinations:

(a) The exception is not prohibited by state or federal statute, rule or regulation;

(b) The individual is eligible for vocational rehabilitation services and is in plan or post-employment status;

(c) Assessments, evaluations and tests demonstrate the purchase is necessary to remove a transportation related barrier;

(d) The purchase is in support of a specific vocational goal (identified in the individual’s IPE);

(e) At closure the individual will have sufficient income and resources to meet daily living expenses and cost of vehicle operation and replacement;

(f) The individual possesses or can obtain a valid driver’s license; and

(g) The individual can safely operate the vehicle.

(3) OVRS may deny purchase of vehicle modification services if:

(a) The individual fails to cooperate with required evaluations, assessments or tests; or

(b) It is determined the individual is unable to drive safely. OVRS may permit an exception when a qualified driver other than the individual will be operating the vehicle.

(4) When OVRS authorizes payment toward a purchase, the primary lien holder must be the office.

(5) OVRS shall transfer ownership only when required for employment and successful file closure. OVRS must repossess, reassign or otherwise dispose of the vehicle when it has determined transfer to the individual is not justified. Disposal must occur according to department or office property disposition guidelines.

(6) Scope of Vehicle Modifications: OVRS shall only authorize a vehicle modification when the office determines modification is the most cost effective and appropriate means of providing necessary employment-related transportation for the individual. Purchase of a vehicle modification shall be the least costly necessary to accomplish the goal of enabling the individual to enter, maintain or regain employment.

(a) As Rehabilitation Technology, defined as necessary to address vocational barriers confronted by individuals with disabilities in the area of transportation, OVRS may not purchase the following:

(A) Modifications to a van if it would be possible to modify a sedan style automobile to meet the individual’s need for transportation;

(B) Modifications to a vehicle if the individual owns or has use of another vehicle that would meet the individual’s transportation needs; or

(C) Modifications to a vehicle if a qualified vehicle modification evaluation indicates that the individual is not capable of driving due to the individual’s disability. OVRS may permit an exception when a qualified driver other than the individual will be operating the vehicle.

(b) OVRS may provide vehicle modifications if:

(A) The exception is not prohibited by state or federal statute, rule or regulation;

(B) The individual does not own another vehicle which meets the individual’s employment-related transportation needs;

(C) The individual is capable of safely operating a motor vehicle; and

(D) The individual requires the proposed modification, as documented and recommended in by a qualified vehicle modification evaluation.

(7) Vehicle requirements for OVRS participation in the cost of modifications are as follows:

(a) the vehicle to be modified has been judged safe and is in reasonably good condition, as determined by a qualified mechanic;

(b) All proposed modifications are consistent with applicable vehicle safety laws;

(c) OVRS shall preauthorize any payment for a modification in a new or used vehicle acquired by the individual. The individual shall be responsible for the costs of any modification not recommended by a qualified vehicle modification evaluation. The individual is responsible for the costs of any modification-equipment not covered by the office;

(d) Preinstalled modifications in used vehicles. OVRS shall preauthorize any payment for preinstalled modifications in a used vehicle acquired by the individual. The individual shall be responsible for all payment for any modification equipment not recommended by the qualified vehicle modification evaluation and/or any modification equipment costs not covered by the office;

(e) Unmet modification requirements. Where new or used pre-existing vehicle modification equipment is insufficient to meet the individual’s needs, as documented by the qualified vehicle modification evaluation, the office shall direct negotiate or bid out the unmet minimum necessary modification requirements;

(f) OVRS shall not provide such optional equipment as may generally be purchased through an automobile dealer at the time the vehicle is purchased unless such equipment is required as a result of the individual’s disability and is categorized in the Occupational Therapists driver’s evaluation as necessary to the modification of the vehicle;.

(8) OVRS conditions for vendor selection are as follows:

(a) Vehicle modifications shall be purchased from vendors or dealers who are listed and on file with OVRS as an approved vendor of the devices;

 (b) Such purchases must be made in accordance with State procurement regulations and OVRS purchase policy and procedures.

(9) OVRS is not obligated to purchase any service negotiated or contracted by the individual or individual’s family. The office shall authorize all vehicle modification services through the standard State and OVRS procurement and purchasing process.

 (10) Maintaining a private vehicle is the responsibility of the owner.

(11) OVRS assumes no warranty responsibility.

(12) Second or subsequent modifications are limited to those needed to accommodate changes in the individual’s medical condition.

(13) The individual shall be the primary driver of the modified vehicle. The office may make an exception permitting a qualified driver other than the individual to operate the modified vehicle;

(14) The individual must register or co-register the modified vehicle in the individual’s own name. A minor individual must register the modified vehicle in the name of the individual’s parents or guardian. The office may authorize an exception to register the modified vehicle in a name other than the name of the individual and/or individual’s parent or guardian.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 2-1996, f. & cert. ef. 8-28-96; VRS 1-2003, f. & cert. ef. 9-23-03; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0030

Limitations of Payments

NOTE: For medical and related services refer also to OAR 582-075 and 582-080; and, for providers of community rehabilitation services refer also to OAR 582-010.

(1) Payment in Full: Vendors providing any services authorized by OVRS shall not make any charge to or accept any payment from the individual or his/her family for such services unless the amount of the service charge or payment to be borne by the individual is previously agreed to by the individual or his/her family, known to and, where applicable, approved by OVRS.

(2) Client Financial Participation and the Financial Needs Test: Except as expressly exempted, services funded by OVRS are subject to Client Financial Participation. Individuals shall be allowed or required to contribute financially as set forth in OAR 582-070-0030. The contribution requirements apply starting July 1, 2004 for individuals submitting applications for services, requests for post-employment services, and for annual IPE reviews.

(a) The purpose of individual participation in service costs is to encourage the commitment of the individual to their vocational rehabilitation goal, create a cooperative relationship with the individual, and conserve limited OVRS resources.

(b) Except as provided in OAR 582-070-0030(2) (j) and (k), the following individuals are exempted from the Financial Needs Test and Client Financial Participation:

(A) Any individual who has been determined eligible for and is currently the recipient/beneficiary of Social Security Benefits under Title II (Social Security Disability Insurance, SSDI) or Title XVI (Supplemental Security Income, SSI) of the Social Security Act;

(B) Recipients of qualifying needs-based public assistance programs, including Self Sufficiency Cash Benefits, Oregon Health Plan, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and Food Stamps, and excluding financial aid for post-secondary education;

(C) Homeless or transient individuals.

(c) Except as provided in OAR 582-070-0030(2)(j) and (k), the following services are exempt from Client Financial Participation:

(A) Assessment for determining eligibility, vocational rehabilitation needs, or priority for services, including assessment by personnel skilled in rehabilitation technology;

(B) Vocational rehabilitation counseling and guidance, including information and support services to assist an individual in exercising informed choice;

(C) Referral and other services necessary to assist applicants and eligible individuals to secure needed services from other agencies, including other components of the statewide workforce investment system and to advise those individuals about client assistance programs;

(D) Job related services, including job search and placement assistance, job retention services, follow-up services, and follow-along services;

(E) Personal assistance services provided by one or more persons designed to assist an individual with a disability to perform daily living activities on or off the job that the individual would typically perform without assistance if the individual did not have a disability;

(F) Auxiliary aids or services required to participate in the vocational rehabilitation program, such as interpreter services including sign language and oral interpreter services for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing; or tactile interpreting services for individuals who are deaf-blind.

(d) Under the Financial Needs Test, individuals with annual family income of less than either 250 percent of the federal poverty guidelines or $60,000 are not subject to Client Financial Participation and are exempt from the guidelines set out in OAR 582-070-0030(2)(e).

(e) Client Financial Participation shall be determined on an annual basis, not to exceed the annual cost of non-exempt services to OVRS, applying the following contribution schedule:

(A) Individuals with family income between $60,000 and $69,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $700.

(B) Individuals with family income between $70,000 and $79,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $900.

(C) Individuals with family income between $80,000 and $89,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $1300.

(D) Individuals with family income between $90,000 and $99,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $1700.

(E) Individuals with family income between $100,000 and $109,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $2100.

(F) Individuals with family income between $110,000 and $119,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $2900.

(G) Individuals with family income between $120,000 and $129,999 are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $3700.

(H) Individuals with family income at $130,000 or higher are subject to a mandatory financial contribution of $3700 plus ten percent of their family income in excess of $130,000.

(f) OVRS shall use the following definitions to calculate Client Financial Participation:

(A) “Income” is determined by the adjusted gross income from the most recent federal tax return, unless unusual circumstances merit other documentation.

(B) “Family income” consists of income from the individual, the spouse of the individual if residing with the individual, and includes parents if the individual is under 18 and living with parents, or the parents claim the individual as a dependent on federal taxes, or the individual maintains dependent status for financial aid reasons.

(C) “Federal poverty guidelines” are the current poverty guidelines of the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

(D) “Size of the family unit” for purposes of selecting the appropriate federal poverty guideline includes those family members residing with the individual or claimed on federal taxes as dependents; but if the individual is under 18 and living with parents, or the parents claim the individual as a dependent on federal taxes, or the individual maintains dependent status for financial aid reasons, the family unit may include those family members residing with the parents or claimed on the federal taxes of the parents as dependents

(g) If the individual or their family choose not to share information about their income as part of the calculation of the financial needs test, an annual, mandatory individual contribution of $3700 shall be established, not to exceed the annual cost of non-exempt services to OVRS, unless OVRS concludes that the annual family income of a individual may exceed $130,000 in which case the individual contribution shall be established at 100 percent for items and services subject to Client Financial Participation.

(h) Subsequent Financial Needs Tests shall be conducted with the annual review of the Individualized Plan for Employment, and may also be conducted if there is a change in the financial situation of either the individual or the family unit.

(i) “Extenuating Circumstances” shall be considered when the counselor identifies other information related to the individual’s financial situation that negatively affects the individual’s ability to participate in the cost of the rehabilitation program or if requiring the expected financial contribution will result in undue delay in the rehabilitation program. In determining whether to make an adjustment for extenuating circumstances, OVRS may consider the individual’s current income and the reasons for the request. If there are extenuating circumstances that justify an exception, OVRS may delay or waive all or part of the individual’s financial contribution. In such cases the counselor shall:

(A) Obtain written approval of their supervisor;

(B) Provide documentation of the reasons for the exception;

(C) Maintain both the signed exception and the documentation of circumstances in the client individual file record.

(j) If an individual prefers an upgrade, enhancement, optional feature, or more expensive vendor of essentially the same service, equipment or item available from a less expensive vendor, and this preference is not required to satisfy the vocational rehabilitation goals that justify the expenditure, OVRS and the individual may agree that the individual shall pay the difference in cost between the service or item purchased and the service or item available that would have satisfied the vocational rehabilitation goals that justify the expenditure. In this situation, payment is required regardless of whether the financial needs test authorizes payments by the individual; and any payments by the individual in this situation do not count toward the individual’s mandated financial contribution.

(k) An Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) may include voluntary client contributions. An agreement in an IPE to make a voluntary contribution is not enforceable.

(3) Student Financial Aid: OVRS assures that “maximum” effort is made by OVRS and the individual to secure student financial aid for any approved training in institutions of higher education. “Maximum” effort includes making timely application for such grant assistance on a consistent basis and utilizing such benefits as are available in lieu of Vocational Rehabilitation funding:

(a) Coverage: All individuals, including graduate students, must apply for all financial aid benefits each academic year. All need based grants, including Pell Grants and Student Employment Opportunity Grants, must be used to pay for educational costs, including tuition and books, before an individual may utilize VR funds for this purpose. This requirement does not apply to merit based grants, including scholarships or loans. However, individuals may voluntarily elect to use these funds, as well as work study and loans for this purpose.

(b) Other Comparable Benefits or Services: If a third party (e.g., employer, insurance company, WCD) is required to or agrees to pay or reimburse to OVRS all of the case service rehabilitation costs of the individual, the financial aid grant offer need not be applied against the plan costs nor treated as a “comparable benefit;”

(c) Late Applications: Pending determination of student aid by the financial aid officer, OVRS funds can be expended for education-related expenses between the date of application for financial aid and determination of the individual’s eligibility for federal student aid provided that such expenditures are reduced by any amounts of comparable benefits subsequently received, excepting student loans;

(d) Duplicate Payments: When student financial aid is approved, arrangements must be made promptly to reduce projected OVRS payments and/or recover duplicate payments;

(e) Parent Non-Participation: With the Field Services Manager’s approval, the counselor may fund the parental contribution portion of the student’s budget (as prepared by the college or university FAO) if the parents refuse or are unable to contribute.

(4) For Industrially-Injured Workers: OVRS shall provide only for the cost of those rehabilitation services which are not the responsibility of the employer, insurer or the Oregon Worker’s Compensation Office.

(5) Increased Cost Maintenance: OVRS shall not provide maintenance except for additional costs incurred while participating in authorized services, such as when the individual must maintain a second residence away from the regular household in order to achieve a rehabilitation goal. Such maintenance shall be provided according to the provisions under OAR 582-070-0020(4), 582-001-0010(25), and 34 CFR 361.5(b) (35).

(6) Physical and Mental Restoration Services: Are provided only to ameliorate a diagnosed physical or mental condition that presents a substantial impediment to employment for the eligible individual. The services must be essential for the individual’s achievement of a vocational goal:

(a) Drugs:

(A) When a physician (MD or OD) or dentist recommends prescription medication, if practical, the lowest price (e.g., generic) shall be obtained prior to issuing an authorization;

(B) Controlled substances require a prescription; an attending physician’s statement under ORS 475.309(2)(a) does not qualify as a prescription.

(b) Dental Services: Dental care may be provided by OVRS when the condition of teeth or gums imposes a major impediment to employment (e.g., endangers health, emergency needs, or serious cosmetic needs). Dentures may be purchased from licensed dentists or certified denturists;

(c) Eye Glasses: Eye glasses may be purchased when determined essential for evaluation of eligibility or the achievement of the vocational goal, limited to basic frames and lenses unless other features are medically required (e.g., sun glasses, tints, contact lenses);

(d) Wheelchairs: OVRS may purchase a wheelchair when the equipment is required to reduce or eliminate a disability related functional limitation that is a substantial impediment to employment. Wheelchairs must be prescribed by a qualified medical specialist;

(e) Hearing Aids. OVRS may provide hearing aides only when:

(A) Essential to complete an evaluation;

(B) Necessary to reduce or eliminate a barrier to employment; or

(C) The participant requires the hearing aids to retain employment. OVRS shall document the need for a hearing aid. All hearing services must be performed by licensed audiologists.

(f) Other Prosthetic Devices: Prosthetic devices may be purchased only upon the authorization of the counselor and with a written prescription by a qualified professional;

(g) Psychotherapy: Group or individual psychotherapy may be provided in those instances when required for a person to reach a vocational goal and when an immediate and positive goal related impact is anticipated. A specific number of sessions or a specified time limit is required. OVRS may limit these services to those recommended by an OVRS psychological or psychiatric consultant;

(h) Physical or mental restoration services shall not be provided by OVRS for the treatment of an acute or chronic medical complication or emergency unless these are associated with or arise out of the provision of physical or mental restoration services in the IPE, or are inherent in the condition under treatment as described in the IPE.

(i) Corrective surgery or therapeutic treatment shall not be provided or funded by OVRS if it is not likely within a reasonable period of time to correct or modify substantially a stable or slowly progressive physical or mental impairment that constitutes a substantial impediment to employment.

(7) Services Not Provided: OVRS shall not authorize or provide funding for the following services:

(a) Any individual-incurred debt;

(b) Any services obtained by the individual prior to the date of application;

(c) Purchase of land or stationary buildings;

(d) Fines or penalties, such as traffic violations, parking tickets, library fines, etc;

(e) Breakage fees and other refundable deposits;

(f) Contributions and donations;

(g) Entertainment costs;

(h) Payments to credit card companies;

(i) Authorization to supermarkets or grocery stores for food items;

(j) Basic Maintenance;

(k) Gender reassignment surgery;

(l) Except for eye glasses or hearing aids essential to completing diagnostic/evaluation services (to determine Rehabilitation Services eligibility) in applicant status, or occupational tools or licenses essential to Extended Evaluation Services, the following may never be authorized for an individual who has applied but has not yet been found eligible for rehabilitation services:

(A) Prosthetic devices;

(B) Occupational tools and licenses;

(C) Placement services.

(8) OVRS shall not contract with individuals receiving OVRS services, except in the following circumstances:

(a) The individual is a current OVRS vendor and is receiving services from or through OVRS; or,

(b) The individual’s Individualized Plan for Employment provides for the development of a business where there is no known competition in the region of the state in which the business will be or is located. In addition, the individual’s case has been reviewed by a branch manager who concurs there is no known competition to the business or proposed business.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-1978, f. 3-14-78, ef. 3-15-78; VRD 2-1981, f. & ef. 12-1-81; VRD 2-1992, f. & cert. ef. 4-20-92; VRD 4-1993, f. & cert. ef. 11-1-93; VRS 2-2004, f. & cert. ef. 3-9-04; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2008, f. & cert. ef. 2-4-08; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0040

Repossession/Disposition of Non-Expendable Property

(1) For tools, supplies, equipment, vehicles, etc., funded by OVRS and needed by the individual for employment at time of closure as employed (from Individualized Plan for Employment or post-employment services), ownership or title is transferred to the individual.

(2) If an individual is closed as ‘other than rehabilitated’, or if tools, supplies, equipment, vehicles, etc., are not needed while the individual is receiving plan services or not needed by the individual employed at the time of a successful closure, where practical and appropriate, such property shall be repossessed and reassigned or otherwise disposed of by OVRS if this property was funded by OVRS and has a current aggregate value of $1000 or more:

(a) For such property with a current aggregate value under $1000, the counselor may agree to transfer the property to the ownership of the individual. Such agreements are only valid if the agreement is written. If there is no such agreement, the counselor shall make a reasonable effort to repossess the property through voluntary cooperation by the involved individual, individual’s family or other individual who may be in current possession of said property, including small claims court; and

(b) For property with current values estimated to be $1000 or more in the aggregate, OVRS may pursue, if necessary, other available legal means to regaining such property, or its equivalent value, including obtaining advice or assistance from the office of the attorney general.

(3) Any property funded by OVRS that has been purchased via prescription (such as glasses, hearing aids, wheelchairs) may be retained by the individual, with justification at closure documented in the individual’s record.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 344.530

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 2-1992, f. & cert. ef. 4-20-92; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2005, f. & cert. ef. 1-11-05; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0041

Self Employment Including Micro-Enterprises

Self-employment is an employment option that offers people with disabilities an opportunity to enter the labor market and contributes to self-sufficiency and independence. Self-employment, including micro-enterprises, should be consistent with the individual’s strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities and interests, providing the individual full opportunity to exercise informed choice in the selection of their employment outcome.

Stat. Auth: ORS 344.530(2)

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-2000, f. & cert. ef. 7-24-00; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0042

Definitions

The following definitions apply to Rules 582-070-0041 through 582-070-0044:

(1) “Business plan” means a document that describes the organization and operation of the proposed business. It is prepared by the individual, with assistance, as needed, from the counselor and/or Small Business Development Center at a local community college, a micro-enterprise organization, private business consultant, consultant from the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) or other similar source(s). The business plan shall be used by the counselor and the individual, in consultation with a qualified expert, to evaluate the viability of the business, as well as provide the individual with a blue print for the business. The business plan shall outline the financial projections of the business, the business marketing plan, and the method and schedule of ongoing record keeping and analysis that shall be used to evaluate the progress of the business. If the plan is viable, it can also be used to apply for any needed funding.

(2) “Self-employment” means working for oneself, in a business that sells goods or services. Self-employment may be a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation. If the business plan includes a partnership or corporation, and OVRS funding is requested, the individual must be the owner, controlling partner or controlling shareholder of the corporation.

(3) “Start-up costs” mean those costs as described in the business plan required in order for a business to begin operation. Start up costs that are considered reasonable and necessary shall only be considered for funding by OVRS after all comparable services and benefits have been applied. Reasonable and necessary start-up costs required to establish the business may be provided by the OVRS in accordance with applicable purchasing rules and regulations.

(4) “Viable” when used with “business plan” means a business plan that has a reasonable chance of success leading to self sufficiency, based upon a market feasibility study; financial review of projected revenue, expenditures and assets; and the demonstrated technical and business management skills and abilities of the individual. An analysis of the ongoing costs required for the operation of the business and the resources that will cover those expenses will also be necessary to determine whether the projected resources will be sufficient to cover ongoing operational costs of the business. In order to be “viable” the individual’s technical skills must be commensurate with those required of the self-employment venture. A business plan, to be viable, has been reviewed, in consultation with the individual and the OVRS counselor, by an individual or organization with a credible background in business planning. Although OVRS does not require that an individual utilize loan funds as a comparable benefit, a business plan may require loan funding or additional funding sources other than OVRS (e.g., family, friends) in order to be considered viable.

Stat. Auth: ORS 344.530(2)

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-2000, f. & cert. ef. 7-24-00; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0043

Nature and Scope of OVRS Services/Role of the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor and the Individualized Plan for Employment

(1) The primary role of the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor when assisting the individual in obtaining self-employment is to address the individual’s disability-related barriers to employment. The Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor shall ensure the individual’s business plan and the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) incorporates the strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, and interests identified in a comprehensive assessment. In order to ensure the individual is provided full opportunity to exercise informed choice, OVRS may:

(a) Help the individual evaluate his or her abilities, and interest in managing a business, including both formal evaluation, as well as observation and assessment of the individual’s planning skills, ability to formulate a marketing and business plan, aptitudes to perform skills intrinsic in the operation of the business, initiative, commitment, and follow-through on tasks;

(b) Help the individual develop a viable business plan;

(c) Help the individual research and obtain the resources necessary for the business plan;

(d) Identify, in full consultation with the individual, the measurements that shall be used to determine progress toward the planned outcome.

(e) Work with the individual to understand the risks and responsibilities of owning and operating a business, especially when funds are borrowed to capitalize and support ongoing business needs; and

(f) Assist with reasonable and necessary start-up costs of viable business plans when appropriate.

(2) If the individual’s formal business plan is determined to be viable, the counselor and the individual shall complete the individual’s Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). The IPE must:

(a) Specify needed services and costs, including training in specific skill areas in starting and owning a business, if the individual lacks skills necessary for successful business management;

(b) Identify Assistive Technology and any other accommodations required;

(c) Identify all resources available to fund the business plan, as described in OAR 582-070-0044(2).

(d) Include a plan to monitor and evaluate the success of the business through scheduled reviews with the individual, and individual provided financial and marketing activity reports, as defined in the business plan.

Stat. Auth: ORS 344.530(2)

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-2000, f. & cert. ef. 7-24-00; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

582-070-0044

Funding Requirements for a Viable Business Plan

(1) Under most circumstances, OVRS should not be considered a primary resource for the capital required for a self-employment venture. When no comparable benefits and services are available, OVRS may fund reasonable and necessary start up costs for a business as part of a individual’s Individualized Plan for Employment. In order for a plan to be viable, other funding sources may be necessary to cover costs identified in the business plan that would not be covered by OVRS.

(2) Funding for the business plan may include, but is not limited to, the individual’s own resources; comparable services and benefits; loans from banks, finance companies or venture capitalists; grants; foundations; loans or loan guarantees from the Small Business Administration; local and state economic development funds; help from family or friends; a Social Security Plan for Achieving Self Support (PASS); or other such resources.

(3) The individual is not required to accept a loan or utilize a PASS plan to fund the business plan. However, to be viable, a business plan may require additional funding such as that in a subsection (2) to cover the cost of the business venture.

(4) Except for reasonable and necessary initial start-up costs, OVRS shall not pay for ongoing functions intrinsic to the operations of the business. Any request for initial start-up costs must include:

(a) The determination that OVRS and the individual have explored all reasonable self-employment funding options, as identified in subsection (2); and

(b) The determination that available financial resources, as identified in subsection (2), will not meet the reasonable and necessary start-up costs for the business.

(c) Verification from the qualified expert approving the business plan that the requested start up costs are reasonable, necessary, and representative of what would be required for a start up business to begin operations.

(5) OVRS shall assume no financial liability for debts, including existing debt. Any loss shall not be reimbursed by OVRS.

(6) If additional funding such as that in subsection (2) is required to cover the cost of the business venture, the individual shall decide, based upon informed choice about the funding options available, whether to proceed with the business plan. This may include deciding to accept a loan for capitalization and ongoing business expenses.

Stat. Auth: ORS 344.530(2)

Stats. Implemented: ORS 344.511 - 344.690 & 344.710 - 344.730

Hist.: VRD 1-2000, f. & cert. ef. 7-24-00; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2011(Temp), f. 2-15-11, cert. ef. 3-1-11 thru 8-28-11; VRS 2-2011, f. 8-12-11, cert. ef. 9-1-11

Notes
1.) This online version of the OREGON BULLETIN is provided for convenience of reference and enhanced access. The official, record copy of this publication is contained in the original Administrative Orders and Rulemaking Notices filed with the Secretary of State, Archives Division. Discrepancies, if any, are satisfied in favor of the original versions. Use the OAR Revision Cumulative Index found in the Oregon Bulletin to access a numerical list of rulemaking actions after November 15, 2010.

2.) Copyright 2011 Oregon Secretary of State: Terms and Conditions of Use

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