Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 22. Social Services

22VAC40. Department of Social Services




The Department of Social Services supervises the administration of public assistance and service programs by local social services agencies, including various federally reimbursed programs and programs not federally reimbursed. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2. The State Board of Social Services is authorized to adopt regulations for the administration of such programs. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 2, Article 2.

For purposes of the federal programs, the department is also responsible for the preparation of state plans in compliance with federal requirements. It has issued regulations and plans governing federally funded programs including temporary assistance for needy families, child support enforcement, Title IV-E foster care, family preservation and family support services, employment services, emergency assistance for needy families with children, services to children, supplemental nutrition assistance, energy assistance, refugee assistance, child care, employment-related services, and the personnel plan; and regulations governing administration of non-federally funded programs including state and local foster care, general relief programs, and certain service programs. Although the Department of Medical Assistance Services administers the Medicaid and state-local hospitalization programs, local departments of social services are responsible for the determination of eligibility for Medicaid and state-local hospitalization by local departments of social services.

The board is authorized to adopt regulations governing the conduct of administrative hearings and denial of benefits to individuals who have intentionally made false or misleading statements or misrepresented, concealed or withheld facts for the purpose of establishing or maintaining eligibility for benefits under the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 5. The board is required to adopt regulations to implement a statewide fraud control program to ensure that fraud prevention and investigation are pursued throughout the Commonwealth. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 5. The board oversees the administration of the Virginia Caregivers Grant Program and the Virginia Home Energy Assistance Program. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapters 8 and 22.

The department is required to adopt regulations regarding any human research to be conducted or authorized by the department, any agency or facility licensed by the department, or any local department. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 2, Article 2.

The department reviews reports made to the courts in adoption proceedings by child-placing agencies or local social services agencies, investigates and reports on adoptions involving children or petitioners outside of the Commonwealth, and preserves all adoption reports. It may prescribe regulations governing interstate placements of children, and its approval is required for placement of certain Virginia children outside of the Commonwealth by juvenile courts, local social services agencies, and licensed child-placing agencies. Code of Virginia, Title 16.1, Chapter 11; Title 63.2, Chapters 3 and 12. Furthermore, the department is required to maintain a comprehensive state social child services planning process and a tracking system for the foster care and adoption programs. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 3.

The department directs the planning, funding, and coordination of child protective services, and maintains a central registry of all reports of child abuse and neglect within Virginia. It is authorized to prescribe forms used by local departments of social services to report abuse or neglect. Local departments are required to report child abuse and neglect to the department and to submit annual reports to the appropriate court and the department. The department is authorized to adopt regulations to establish a child protective services differential response system. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 15. It is authorized to adopt regulations for the disbursement of available funds to public and private community groups for service programs for victims of domestic violence and community programs to prevent child abuse and neglect. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 15 and Chapter 16, Article 3.

The department provides child support services, primarily through 16 district offices covering the Commonwealth and a web-based portal. These services include locating parents and their assets, establishing paternity when necessary, administratively establishing and adjusting child support orders and medical support orders, enforcing orders through a variety of administrative and judicial means and collecting and distributing child support payments. Services are provided to applicants, all recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and recipients of other types of public assistance benefits. The department also offers family-centered services to help parents overcome barriers to paying support. In addition, the department operates a central registry for incoming and outgoing petitions for services in intergovernmental cases and provides location services in parental kidnapping cases. When a court order requires that child support payments be payable to the department, the department provides pass-through payment services if the parties are not TANF recipients and have not requested child support services. The department takes no enforcement actions on these cases and does not certify arrearages; any modifications to orders or income withholding are addressed directly with the court. The department is authorized to adopt regulations to establish factors that may lead to a rebuttal of the presumption that the amount of an administrative support obligation resulting from application of the child support guidelines is the correct amount to be ordered. Code of Virginia Title 63.2, Chapter 19, Article 4. Additionally, the department is authorized to adopt regulations for a New Hire Reporting Center, for a State Case Registry for all child support orders entered in the Commonwealth, and for determination of the amount paid to hospitals for paternity establishment programs. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapter 19, Articles 1, 2, and 8.

The board is authorized to adopt regulations and schedules for fees to be charged for processing applications for licenses to operate assisted living facilities, adult day care centers, and child welfare agencies. The board is authorized to adopt regulations to provide for the voluntary registration of family day homes. It is authorized to adopt regulations governing private child welfare agencies; registering small family day homes; and licensing family day homes, family day systems, children's residential facilities, independent foster homes, child-placing agencies, and licensed child day centers.

The department is authorized to adopt regulations and administer the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program and to adopt regulations for the approval or disapproval of proposals requesting tax credits for donations to neighborhood organizations pursuant to the Neighborhood Assistance Act. Code of Virginia, Title 63.2, Chapters 6 and 20.

The department is authorized to develop a state plan for refugee resettlement, with necessary procedures and reporting requirements, pursuant to the Refugee Act of 1980, PL 96-212, and 45 FR 35359 (May 27, 1980). The department is the designated agency to administer the community services block grant program pursuant to the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981 (P.L. 97-35), P.L. 98-558 and Code of Virginia, Title 2.2, Chapter 54. The department provides support services to public and nonprofit volunteer programs and administers the federal national services (AmeriCorps) initiative in Virginia.

In addition, the department maintains financial assistance, social services, and administrative manuals of standards, policies and procedures for local departments of social services.

Regulations concerning public assistance, service programs, licensing and child support enforcement are available at the Office of Commissioner of the department at 801 E. Main Street, Richmond VA 23219.  A fee may be imposed for large numbers of copies of regulations. Licensing regulations are also available at the office of the director in eight regional licensing offices and, in addition, are distributed to all applicants and licensees. Also available for public distribution are informational pamphlets in question-and-answer form about the regulation of facilities for adults and children. Internet address:

Rev. 08/2019



Website addresses provided in the Virginia Administrative Code to documents incorporated by reference are for the reader's convenience only, may not necessarily be active or current, and should not be relied upon. To ensure the information incorporated by reference is accurate, the reader is encouraged to use the source document described in the regulation.

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