Current through Register Vol. 48, No. 14, April 8, 2022
on a finding that a parent knowingly misuses funds, the Department shall
temporarily suspend the account and provide notice to the parent. The notice
1. Include the reason for the
temporary suspension and a detailed description of the disallowed expense;
Provide the parent 10 days,
not including weekends, to either:
documentation that demonstrates the expense is allowable or that the parent was
victim to identity theft or fraud; or
b. Agree to repay the amount.
B. The Department shall
review the documentation submitted pursuant to R7-2-1509(A)(2)(a) within five
days of receipt to determine if the expense is allowable or if the parent was
victim to identity theft or fraud. If the Department determines the expense is
allowable or that the parent was victim to identity theft or fraud, the
Department shall lift the temporary suspension, reinstate the account and make
any disbursements that were withheld during the suspension.
C. If the Department determines the
documentation fails to demonstrate the expense is allowable or that the parent
was victim to identity theft or fraud, the Department shall provide
notification to the parent that the amount must be repaid. The Department shall
withhold the disbursement of any additional ESA funds until repayment is made.
The Department may agree to a gradual repayment plans at the request of the
parent and shall reinstate additional ESA funding once repayment has begun. The
Department may remove a parent from the Program that fails to repay an amount
or agree to a repayment plan.
Once a parent agrees to a gradual repayment plan or repays an amount pursuant
to R7-2-1509(A)(2)(b) or R7-2-1509(C), the Department shall lift the temporary
suspension, reinstate the account and make any disbursements that were withheld
during the suspension as follows:
one day, if the repayment is made by cashier's check or money order;
2. Within seven days, if
repayment is made by personal check.
E. Except in cases which the Attorney General
determines that a parent or accountholder has committed fraud, any expenditure
from an Arizona Empowerment Scholarship Account for a purchase that is deemed
ineligible pursuant to A.R.S. §
and that is subsequently repaid by the parent or accountholder shall be
credited back to the Arizona Empowerment Scholarship Account balance within 30
days after the receipt of payment.
Pursuant to R7-2-1511, a parent who has been removed from the Program pursuant
to this Section may file a written request for a hearing within 30 days after
being served the notice of removal.
The Department shall refer a case to the Board if a parent does not file an
appeal pursuant to R7-2-1511 and either:
Fails to repay the amount of a disallowed expense, or
2. Fails to make a payment on a gradual
GH. On a finding of
misuse of monies, the Board may refer the case to the Attorney General who may
bring an action to recover the monies. Upon obtaining evidence of fraudulent
use of an account, the Board may refer the case to the Attorney General for the
purpose of a criminal investigation.
HI. A parent or
qualified student is not eligible to enroll a qualified student in the ESA
Program if that parent was an account holder on an account that was referred to
the Attorney General for misuse of monies unless the parent's expense was
subsequently found to be allowable or the parent was the victim of identity
theft or fraud.
IJ. If a parent
commits fraud, the Department shall withhold funds from all accounts in the
parent's name and close the accounts.