PM 01-01-03: Freedom of Choice

WAG 01-01-03

Cash Programs

A person who qualifies for TANF and AABD must choose one program or the other (see NOTE below). For persons potentially eligible for more than one program, advise the person of the program differences. text deleted An adult who qualifies for SSI cannot choose to receive TANF.

NOTE: A person required to be in a TANF case with their child or sibling cannot choose AABD.

A caretaker relative who chooses SSI for the only child in an otherwise eligible TANF unit may receive TANF if there is insufficient income to meet the caretaker relative's needs.

Differences Between All Kids and AABD Medical Which May Affect a Person's Choice

AABD Medical:

If a person is included in the standard, the person's income must be considered.

A person is allowed a $25 deduction from income other than contributions and SSI (Community Cases only).

The deductions from earned income for the applicant/client are:

  • AABD(D) and AABD(A) - the first $20 plus 1/2 of the next $60; or
  • AABD(B) - the first $85 plus 1/2 of the remainder; and
  • recognized expenses of employment.

If the income of another person who is not receiving medical or cash benefits is being budgeted, only recognized expenses of employment (including child care) are deducted.

The maximum child care allowed is $160 per child for persons employed full-time and $128 per child for persons employed part-time.

All Kids:

A child and/or sibling can be included in the standard and their income not considered.

A $25 deduction from income is not allowed.

The deductions from earned income for the family are:

  • $90 per person;
  • $30 plus 1/3 of the remainder if certain conditions are met (see WAG 15-04-02-c); and
  • child care. (The maximum child care allowed is $200 per child under age 2 and $175 per child age 2 and over.)

If the income of a responsible relative who is not receiving cash or medical is being budgeted, only $90 is deducted.

Medical Care

Clients can choose to see any medical vendor approved to take part in the Medicaid program. Certain programs, like HMOs, may limit their choice.

A primary care doctor and/or pharmacy is assigned to clients who overuse or abuse medical services. The client must use the primary care provider for 6 months unless special factors change this.


Clients can accept or reject any services or programs that they qualify for. However, they must cooperate to qualify for benefits they want.

Living Arrangements

Clients can choose to live wherever and with whomever they want. We cannot impose our choices on any client. However, their choice may affect their eligibility or benefit amount.

Family and Community Resource Center (FCRC)

An applicant, except those that live in a Long Term Care (LTC) Facility or Supportive Living Facility (SLF) and those residing in Cook whose application is submitted by a hospital, may choose to apply at any FCRC, see PM 02-04-02.

Once an applicant is determined eligible for assistance, they have a right to choose the FCRC that will service their case and request their case be transferred, see PM 18-07-00.