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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 22. Social Services
Agency 45. Department For The Blind And Vision Impaired
Chapter 51. Regulations Governing Provision of Services in Vocational Rehabilitation
1/18/2021

22VAC45-51-40. Eligibility for vocational rehabilitation services.

A. The DBVI Vocational Rehabilitation Program shall serve only individuals who are blind or who have significant visual impairment and have attained the age of 14 years. DBVI and the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services shall identify client populations served by each agency through a cooperative agreement.

B. Any qualified applicant residing in Virginia shall be served by the DBVI Vocational Rehabilitation Program. Services may be provided to otherwise qualified non-U.S. citizens who can produce a permanent or working visa, or their green card registration number. Copies of these documents shall be retained in the applicant's case service record.

C. DBVI shall conduct an initial assessment to determine whether an applicant is eligible for vocational rehabilitation services and to determine the individual's priority under an order of selection for services if DBVI is operating under an order of selection pursuant to 22VAC45-51-60. The initial assessment must be conducted in the most integrated setting possible, consistent with the individual's needs and informed choice. The applicant for vocational rehabilitation services may use a qualified service provider of his choice in obtaining necessary assessments to determine eligibility for services and priority for services.

D. Qualified applicants shall be assessed as meeting the following eligibility criteria to receive vocational rehabilitation services from DBVI:

1. The individual shall meet the criteria of being blind or visually impaired through one or more of the following:

a. The individual has a visual impairment that results in functional limitations related to obtaining, regaining, or maintaining employment and causes the individual to require the specialized services available through DBVI;

b. The individual, in the opinion of a qualified ophthalmologist or optometrist, has a rapidly progressive eye condition that causes or shall cause the individual to experience functional limitations related to obtaining, regaining, or maintaining employment and causes the individual to require the specialized services available through DBVI; or

c. The individual is in a situation where eye treatment or surgery, or both, are recommended and there are functional limitations in performing employment duties.

2. The individual's blindness or visual impairment shall constitute or result in a substantial impediment to employment.

3. The individual shall require vocational rehabilitation services to prepare for, secure, retain, or regain employment.

4. The individual shall be able to benefit in terms of an employment outcome from the provision of vocational rehabilitation services.

E. Applicants who are unemployed, underemployed, or in unstable employment as determined by the DBVI vocational rehabilitation counselor meet the requirement that there exists a substantial impediment to employment.

F. A beneficiary of social security benefits due to blindness under Title II or XVI of the Social Security Act shall be presumed eligible for DBVI vocational rehabilitation services under subsection D of this section provided the individual intends to achieve an employment outcome consistent with the unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice of the individual.

G. Vocational rehabilitation services shall not be provided to a potentially eligible individual on the basis of an interim determination of eligibility.

Statutory Authority

§ 51.5-66 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 33, Issue 02, eff. October 19, 2016.

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