N.J. Admin. Code § 10:87-10.5 - Voluntary quit or reduction of work effort

Current through Register Vol. 54, No. 7, April 4, 2022

(a) Any individual subject to the NJ SNAP work requirements who either voluntarily quits his or her job without good cause, or who voluntarily reduces his or her work to less than 30 hours per week or his or her wages to less than the equivalent of the Federal minimum wage multiplied by 30 hours, shall not be eligible for participation in the NJ SNAP program in accordance with the provisions at (c) below. Changes in employment status that result from involuntarily reducing hours of employment while working for the same employer, terminating a self-employment enterprise or resigning from a job at the demand of the employer shall not be considered as a reduction of work effort or a voluntary quit. If an individual quits a job, secures new employment at comparable wages or hours and is then laid off or, through no fault of his or her own, loses the new job, the earlier quit shall not be the basis of a disqualification. An employee of the Federal Government, or of a State or local government who participates in a strike against such government, and is dismissed from his or her job because of participation in the strike shall be considered to have voluntarily quit his or her job without good cause (see 10:87-10.11 concerning strikers). The CWA shall explain to the household at the time of application the potential consequences of household members quitting a job or reducing their wages or hours of work without good cause.
(b) When a household files an application for participation, or when a participating household reports the loss of a source of income or a reduction in household earnings, the CWA shall determine if any household member voluntarily quit his or her job or reduced his or her work effort. The voluntary quit and reduction of work effort provisions apply if the employment involved 30 hours or more per week or provided weekly earnings at least equivalent to the Federal minimum wage multiplied by 30 hours; the quit or reduction occurred within 60 days prior to the date of application or anytime thereafter; and the quit was without good cause or the reduction of work was voluntary and without good cause. Benefits shall not be delayed beyond the application processing standards described at 10:87-2.26 and 2.28 pending the outcome of the determination.
1. An individual working under contract who declines, without good cause, a contract renewal offer with terms comparable to those of the previous contract, and who has not secured new employment at comparable wages/hours, shall be considered to have voluntarily quit.
2. Neither military personnel who do not re-enlist, nor persons who are not offered employment contract renewal, shall be considered to have voluntarily quit.
3. An individual who reduces his or her work hours to less than 30 hours a week shall remain exempt from program work requirements and shall not be considered to have reduced his or her work effort if his or her weekly earnings exceed the Federal minimum wage times 30 hours.
(c) The CWA shall take the appropriate action, as outlined in (c)1 through 4 below, upon a determination that a voluntarily quit or reduction in work effort occurred.
1. Upon a determination that a voluntarily quit or reduction in work effort has occurred, the CWA shall determine if the violation was with good cause as defined at 10:87-10.6. If the violation was not for good cause, the household's application for participation shall be acted upon as follows:
i. If the individual who committed the violation is the only member of the household, then the household shall be denied NJ SNAP benefits for the duration of the disqualification period. The disqualification is effective upon the issuance of the notice of denial.
ii. If any member of the applicant household is found to have committed the violation, then only that individual shall be denied NJ SNAP benefits for the duration of the disqualification period (see (c)2vi below). The disqualification is effective upon the determination of eligibility for the remaining household members. The income, resources and allowable deductions of this ineligible household member shall be treated in accordance with 10:87-7.7(b).
iii. An individual who has committed a voluntary quit or a reduction in work effort and has been denied NJ SNAP benefits cannot be designated as the head of household, as defined at 10:87-2.6, during the disqualification period.
2. If the CWA determines that a recipient voluntarily quit his or her job or reduced his or her work effort while participating in the program, or discovers a quit or reduction which occurred within 60 days prior to application or between application and certification, the CWA shall act upon the household's NJ SNAP case as follows:
i. If the individual who committed the violation is the only member of the household, then eligibility shall be terminated, and the individual shall be ineligible for the duration of the disqualification period (see (c)2vi below).
ii. If any member of the household is found to have committed the violation, then only that individual shall have his or her NJ SNAP eligibility terminated for the duration of the disqualification period (see (c)2vi below). The income, resources and allowable deductions of this ineligible household member shall be treated in accordance with 10:87-7.7(b).
iii. If the individual who committed the voluntary quit or a reduction in work effort is the head of household, a new head of household shall be determined in accordance with the provisions at 10:87-2.6.
iv. The individual affected by the voluntary quit or work effort reduction disqualification shall be issued a notice of adverse action, which shall specify the period of disqualification, the particular act of noncompliance committed, the actions that may be taken to avoid the disqualification, the household's right to a fair hearing, and that the individual may reapply at the end of the disqualification period.
v. An individual has a right to a fair hearing to appeal a termination or denial of benefits due to a determination of voluntarily quit or work effort reduction without good cause. If the participating individual requests a fair hearing and the CWA determination is upheld, the disqualification period shall begin the first of the month after the hearing decision is rendered.
vi. The disqualification penalties for voluntary quit or reduction of work effort are as follows:
(1) The first instance of a violation results in a disqualification of one month;
(2) The second instance of a violation results in a disqualification of three months;
(3) The third and subsequent instances of violations result in a disqualification of six months.
3. If a household is certified when a quit or reduction of work effort which occurred prior to certification is discovered, the household shall be regarded as a participating household and shall have the appropriate disqualification imposed.
4. If a work-eligible household member's voluntary quit or reduction of work effort either occurs or is discovered in the last month of the certification period, the individual shall be denied recertification for the length of the appropriate disqualification period, commencing with the first day of the month after the certification period expires. If the household does not reapply, the CWA shall establish a claim against the household for those benefits received by the household member for the length of the appropriate disqualification period subsequent to the last day of the month of the quit. If benefits were received for less than the appropriate disqualification period subsequent to the last day of the month of the quit, a claim shall be established for benefits that were overissued to the household during that period and a period of ineligibility shall be assigned to the work-eligible household member for the remainder of the disqualification period. The end result being that the months covered by the claim and/or the actual disqualification period imposed will be equal to the number of months that otherwise should have been imposed under the appropriate disqualification period.
(d) Persons exempt from the work registration provisions as stated at 10:87-10.2 are exempt from the voluntary quit or reduction of work effort provisions, with the exception of an individual who was employed 30 or more hours per week and then quit that employment (see 10:87-10.2(b)5 ).

Notes

N.J. Admin. Code § 10:87-10.5
Amended by R.1989 d.121, effective 2/21/1989.
See: 20 N.J.R. 2689(a), 21 N.J.R. 511(b).
This section was recodified with amendments from 3.19(d)1.-3.
Amended by R.1990 d.565, effective 11/19/1990.
See: 22 N.J.R. 2219(a), 22 N.J.R. 3486(a).
Deleted all reference to quitting the "most recent" job, thus aligning New Jersey's Food Stamp Program with Federal regulations at 7 CFR 273.7.
Amended by R.1991 d.247, effective 5/6/1991.
See: 23 N.J.R. 179(a), 23 N.J.R. 1412(b).
In (b): added N.J.A.C reference and procedures regarding benefits.
Added clarifying text in subsection (c).
Amended by R.1998 d.498, effective 10/5/1998.
See: 30 N.J.R. 1928(a), 30 N.J.R. 3669(b).
In (a), inserted ", or voluntarily reduces his or her work to less than 30 hours per week," following "cause" in the first sentence, inserted a new second sentence, inserted "involuntarily" preceding "reducing" in the third sentence, rewrote the sixth sentence, and added a seventh sentence; in (b), added ", or reduced hours of work to less than 30 per week" and made a corresponding language change in the first sentence and substituted a reference to household members for a reference to households in the third sentence of the introductory paragraph, rewrote 1, and added 2; and rewrote (c).
Recodified from N.J.A.C. 10:87-10.10 and amended by R.2004 d.181, effective 5/17/2004.
See: 36 N.J.R. 28(a), 36 N.J.R. 2425(a).
Rewrote the section.
Amended by R.2012 d.031, effective 2/6/2012 (operative March 7, 2012).
See: 43 N.J.R. 2114(a), 44 N.J.R. 241(a).
Substituted "NJ SNAP" for "food stamp" throughout; in (a), substituted "NJ SNAP program" for "Food Stamp Program", and deleted a comma following "comparable wages or hours"; in (c)1ii, deleted a comma following "resources"; and in (c)4, inserted "work-eligible" twice, and substituted "that" for "which" preceding "otherwise".

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