PM 16-05-10: Who May/May NOT Be Protective Payee

WAG 16-05-10.

A protective payee must be a person who is willing and able to help the client manage money. Select a protective payee who is concerned about the welfare of the benefit unit. This may be a person, private welfare agency, or social service agency.

When SSI benefits are paid to a representative payee, ask the SSI representative payee to act as the protective payee for the AABD client. Upon the recommendation of the SSI representative payee, the Family Community Resource Center may decide to appoint a different protective payee or to pay the client directly.

Encourage the client to help select the protective payee. The Family Community Resource Center makes the final choice.

A protective payee cannot be:

  • the client's landlord, or an employee of the landlord;
  • a person who sells the client goods or services;
  • a DHS employee who determines the client's eligibility or benefit amount;
  • a DHS employee who handles fiscal processing for the client's case;
  • a DHS investigator; or
  • a DHS Family Community Resource Center administrator.

DHS employees are prohibited, in their working capacity, from acting as protective or representative payee of any federal benefits (e.g. SSA, SSI, VA, RRB) paid to or in behalf of AABD clients.

In Cook County, when no suitable protective payee is available, the Protective Payee Service Unit (PPSU) acts as protective payee.

For other than Cook County TANF and GA clients, if no other suitable payee is available, a Family Community Resource Center staff person not listed above may act as protective payee.

Because the protective payee for a substance abuse situation needs to manage the unit's resources on a daily basis, it is most effective for the protective payee to be a family member or friend. If no family member or friend is available, refer the case to the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) for neglect, if appropriate.

Do not assign a DHS employee or agency to be protective payee in a substance abuse situation, even if a family member or friend is not available.