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The Oregon Administrative Rules contain OARs filed through August 15, 2014
 
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DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES,
VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION SERVICES

 

DIVISION 50

REFERRAL, APPLICATION AND ELIGIBILITY FOR
VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION SERVICES

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

582-050-0050

Citizenship

Citizenship is not a requirement for eligibility. A person may be eligible for Vocational Rehabilitation Services if he/she meets the basic criteria for eligibility in chapter 582, division 50 of the Oregon Administrative Rules and he/she is:

(1) In the United States for other than a temporary purpose; and

(2) Legally entitled to hold employment in this country.

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; VRS 5-2004, f. & cert. ef. 8-5-04; VRS 1-2005, f. & cert. ef. 1-11-05

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

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