1. What specific factors or conditions does your State consider to determine that a child cannot be placed with adoptive parents without providing financial assistance? ("What is your State definition of special needs?")
A child with special needs is defined as a child that has at least one of the following needs or circumstances that may be a barrier to placement or adoption without financial assistance:
Note: Children must be legally free for adoption, under 18 years of age (or over 18 and under 21 years of age and determined by the department to have a mental or physical handicap that warrants continued assistance) to be eligible for adoption assistance.
2. What are the eligibility criteria for your State-funded adoption assistance program?
In order to be eligible for state-funded adoption assistance a child must be a special needs child as defined above and in the custody of the State of Hawaii Department of Human Services.
3. What is the maximum amount a family may receive in non-recurring adoption expenses from your State? (Adoptive parents can receive reimbursement of certain approved, "one-time" adoption expenses incurred in the process of finalizing a special needs adoption.)
$2,000.00 per child
4. Does your State enter into deferred adoption assistance agreements? (In some States, adoptive parents can enter into an agreement in which they choose to defer the receipt of a Medicaid card, the monthly monetary payment, or both and can elect to receive the Medicaid card and/or monetary payment at another time.)
Hawaii offers deferred adoption assistance agreements.
5. When may adoption assistance payments and benefits begin in your State?
Adoption assistance payments and benefits may begin in Hawaii at adoption placement.
6. How are changes made to the adoption assistance agreement in your State?
Adoptive parents may request a change in the adoption assistance agreement when a child exhibits a change in their needs requiring an increased level of care and resulting in their eligibility for a Difficulty of Care payment or when the circumstances of the family change. To request a change, parents are directed to contact the unit administrating the adoption assistance payments or the unit that finalized the adoption. Modifications in adoption assistance agreements are often made in response to changes relayed at the biennial review of the adoption assistance agreement. DHS departmental contact link: http://www.state.hi.us/dhs/ph_dhs.html.
7. What types of post adoption services are available in your State and how do you find out more about them?
Post adoption services in Hawaii are administered by the Department of Human Services and contracted through outside agencies. DHS’s post-adoption services include the following examples:
Parents can access post adoption services on their own or through the Department of Human Services. See Adoption Hawaii and its post permanency services, links: http://www.adoptionhawaii.com/about.htm and http://www.adoptionhawaii.com/post_permanency.htm. Many private organizations offer a variety of respite options. See the ARCH National Respite Network Respite Locator Service, search by state to locate Hawaii’s respite programs, link: http://www.respitelocator.org/.
Parents may also contact the following individuals in the listed cities for post adoption service information:
Tammie Vesperas, 200 N. Vineyard Blvd, Building B; Honolulu, Hawaii 96817. Phone: 808.543.8422
Child and Family Services, 333 Dairy Rd., Room 201; Kahului, Hawaii 96732. Phone: 808.877.6888
Child and Family Services, 2970 Kele Street, Suite 203; Lihue, Hawaii 96766. Phone: 808.245.5914
Regina Purinton, 99 Au Puni Street, Room 212; Hilo, Hawaii 96720. Phone: 808.934.9552
Personal Parenting and Assessment Services, 74-5620 Palani Rd., Suite 101; Kailua-Kona, Hawaii 96740. Phone: 808.327.2123
Note: Not all services may be available in all cases. Contact your adoption assistance worker or post adoption services contact for information regarding process, eligibility, availability, and duration of services.
8. What mental health services are provided by your State?
Public mental health services for children in Hawaii are administered through MedQUEST. MedQUEST is comprised of managed care organizations delivering services through many different providers. No listing of mental health services offered to children is available. For services and eligibility information, contact MedQUEST, link: http://www.med-quest.us/ or phone 808.587.3540 or 3530. See QUEST’s listing of services, scroll down to Behavioral Health, link: http://www.state.hi.us/dhs/Q-Book.html.
Parents may also contact the Department of Health, Child and Adolescent Division, link: http://www.state.hi.us/doh/camh or phone 808.733.9333. Bilingual Access Line, phone: 808.526.9724.
Note: Not all services may be available in all cases. Contact your adoption assistance worker, medical assistance specialist, or the Department of Health, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Division for information regarding process, eligibility, availability, and duration of services.
9. Does your State provide additional finances or services for medical or therapeutic needs not covered under your State medical plan to children receiving adoption assistance?
Hawaii does not provide additional finances or services for medical or therapeutic needs not covered under their state medical plan to children receiving adoption assistance. No specific program is available to meet a child’s extraordinary needs that are not covered by the adoption assistance payments or medical plan or other eligible services provided by the Department of Health. However, social services programs are available through what is referred to as Title XX (Social Security Act reference) to children receiving adoption assistance who meet the program’s eligibility criteria and have these program needs listed in their adoption assistance agreement. Adoptive parents are directed to contact their adoption assistance or adoption program social worker to apply for these services.
Note: Not all services may be available in all cases. Contact your adoption assistance worker for information regarding process, eligibility, availability, and duration of services.
10. What is your State's process for applying for a fair hearing? (A fair hearing is a legal, administrative procedure that provides a forum to address disagreements with agency decisions.)
Adoptive parents can request a fair hearing when there is disagreement with a DHS decision which affects their child’s adoption assistance. Requests should be in writing to the adoption assistance worker or the department’s administrative appeals office within ninety days from the receipt of a notice of a denial/reduction/termination of adoption assistance. If someone makes a written request on behalf of the adoptive parents, there must be a written statement, signed by the adoptive parent(s) authorizing this person to be their representative. An administrative appeals officer will acknowledge the request for the hearing within fifteen days of the request, and will contact the adoptive parents to schedule a hearing not less than fifteen days prior to the hearing. Adoptive parents will receive a written decision in the mail, issued by the administrative appeals office, within ninety days of the hearing request. Send written requests for fair hearing to the adoption assistance worker or the following address (administrative appeals office):
Administrative Appeals Office
1390 Miller Street, Room 106
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813
11. What is your State Web address for general adoption information?
Hawaii Department of Human Resources has no general adoption information link.
See the Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) for Hawaii law on adoption at HRS 578, link: http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/site1/docs/searchhrs.asp?press1=docs&qu=578.
12. What is your State Web address for adoption assistance information?
Hawaii Department of Human Resources has no adoption assistance information link.
13. What is your State Web address for State-specific medical assistance information for children?
Hawaii’s state-specific medical assistance information links: http://www.med-quest.us/, http://www.med-quest.us/eligibility/medicaid/medicaid.html, andhttp://www.state.hi.us/dhs/Q-Book.html
Credits: Child Welfare Information Gateway (http://www.childwelfare.gov)