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How Far Back Does IHSS Pay?

How Far Back Does IHSS Pay?

how far back does ihss payIf you are the parent of a child with special needs such as autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy or another disability, California State’s In-Home Supportive Services program (IHSS) provides a helpful program to get financial support every month. Especially for those of you who have had to stop working in order to take care of your child. Disability benefits such as IHSS and Protective Supervision allow you to be employed as your child’s in-home caretaker. But can you get retroactive payments? And if so, how far back does IHSS pay?

What qualifications do I need to be paid as an IHSS provider? 

  1. If you quit your job or can’t get a job because you must care for your disabled child, AND
  2. If no other suitable care provider is available (willing and able), AND
  3. If the child is at risk of out-of-home placement or inadequate care.
  4. If both parents live in the home, one parent may get paid when the other parent is working, in school, sleeping, or disabled.

How do I apply for IHSS?

In order to show that your child is eligible for Protective Supervision and IHSS, you need extensive paperwork proving that your child is at risk of injury if left unsupervised at any time during a twenty-four-hour day. This documentation must give clear examples of things your child will do things to hurt him or herself or that he or she is in harm’s way if left alone. This includes:

  1. A list of injuries
  2. Medical documentation
  3. Third-party letters
  4. Additional letters from doctors
  5. Other forms

How much money can I get for IHSS?

Payments are calculated by the hours of service needed for your child. The County Social Services Agency is responsible for doing a needs assessment for each family at the time of application, every twelve months thereafter, and whenever the county has information that the recipient’s physical/mental condition or living/social condition has changed. The number of hours authorized may change with each evaluation.

The assessment evaluates:

  1. Your child’s physical/mental condition, living/social situation, and ability to perform various functions of daily life
  2. Your statement of need
  3. Medical records/physicians’ documents
  4. Other information the case manager may consider necessary and appropriate to assess the need

How far back does IHSS pay?

After the needs assessment, IHSS will send you a letter called a Notice of Action that will let you know if you have been approved or denied services. If approved, you will be notified of the services and number of hours authorized for each service. If services are denied or you are not happy with the number of hours authorized, you have the right to appeal by requesting a State Hearing. The back of the Notice of Action has information about how to appeal.

You may also ask IHSS to review hours up to 90 days retroactive from the date you applied for IHSS.

If you need help with more resources, please contact us.

American Advocacy Group is on the front lines every day, making positive change happen for people diagnosed with Autism, Down syndrome and a range of diagnoses across the continuum. As a leading advocate for all people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families, and the premier provider of the support and services people want and need, we understand the system and know how to take action in regard to your best interests.


Dial (877) 762-0702 or email us at [email protected].

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