Foster children automatically qualify for day care benefits regardless of family income. Foster families may only claim this benefit while working for an employer or while attending school as an undergraduate (*graduate programs may not qualify).
If it's your first time applying, you may want to follow the directions on this step-by-step webinar
You may complete an application through the MIBRIDGES website
You must indicate that the application is for foster children by selecting the appropriate relationship box on the application and we also recommend writing a statement in the notes section that says: “We automatically qualify because we are making the application for foster children and qualification is not based on our income.” Fill out as much information as you can on the application.
This program pays retroactively so get your application as soon as possible after you have a placement.
Once approved payments, including back payments will be made directly to your provider.
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has 30 days to respond to your application. They usually take the full 30 days, but once your application is complete you can call your local DHHS office to see if a worker has been assigned.
Other documents you will need:
Your selected provider will need to fill out a provider verification form before they can collect payment: https://www.michigan.gov/documents/dhs/DHS-4025_297108_7.pdf
If you don't already have one, you can find a provider on the web at http://greatstarttoquality.org/. Note the star ratings for each facility. This is important because the DHHS reimbursement rate is based upon these rankings. This web page explains the reimbursement rates: http://michigan.gov/documents/mde/CDC_Reimbursement_Rates_444617_7.pdf
You will need to supply a copy of your driver's license along with pay-stubs or a signed letter from your employer on letterhead stating the hours you work and the duration of your employment (For example is it a permanent 12 months a year position or seasonal).
Upload the completed forms and documents to your online application or fax or email it directly to your worker.
Choose your provider carefully. The out of pocket expense can vary drastically! Some day cares will ask you to pay for care out of pocket while you are waiting for this benefit to kick in while others will cover you while you wait. Also, you might have to pay a portion of their fees out of pocket if the state’s rates do not cover all of the fees. Make sure to ask your provider about any costs you might incur.
MDHHS will pay for sick days if you follow the daycare’s absentee procedure.
**IF YOU ARE DENIED DAYCARE YOU SHOULD FOLLOW THE ADMINISTRATIVE HEARING PROCESS, DETAILS ON HOW TO INITIATE THE HEARING PROCESS ARE LISTED ON YOUR REJECTION LETTER....DO NOT REAPPLY**
Don't Miss the Annual Renewal! DHHS re-determines your eligibility every year. That means you are going to have to submit a renewal application with requested information annually. Keep any eye out for the renewal documents and call your worker if you do not receive them. If you do not submit the documents your benefits could be interrupted. We know many families who have had this happen and it cost them hundreds of dollars in lost benefits so mark your calendar!
What if I have payment problems? We recommend going to the CDC supervisor first. You can call any MDHHS receptionist and ask for your daycare worker's supervisor's name and email.
You may search for licensed child care that is a good fit for your family at www.greatstarttoquality.org.
Additional information about CDC found at www.michigan.gov/childcare