Adoption and Legal Guardianship Incentive Payments
To provide incentives to States and eligible Tribes to increase annually the number of children in foster care who find permanent homes through adoption or legal guardianship.
General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Office: Administration for Children and Families
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Fiscal Year 2014: 25 States received adoption incentive payments. Fiscal Year 2015: 40 states received adoption incentive payments. Fiscal Year 2016: It is anticipated that 40 title IV-E agencies will receive adoption and legal guardianship incentive payments.
Social Security Act, Title IV, Part E, Section 473A; as amended.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applications are not required. States tribes or territories that have an approved title IV-E plan and that submit data to the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) are eligible to receive payments. The Children's Bureau (CB) shall determine an agency's eligibility for funding based on foster care, adoption and guardianship data reported to AFCARS. AFCARS data must be reported and accepted by CB no later than May15 of the fiscal year subsequent to the fiscal year in which the adoptions or guardianships were finalized (i.e., the "earning year").
Beneficiaries are those children and families eligible under Title IV-B and Title IV-E of the Social Security Act, as amended.
The Children's Bureau (CB) shall determine the number of incentive payment earning foster child adoptions, foster child guardianships, pre-adolescent (age 9 - 13) adoptions and guardianship and older child (age 14 and over) adoptions and guardianships on the basis of data reported by each agency to the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data and accepted by CB no later than May 15 of the fiscal year subsequent to the fiscal year in which the adoptions were finalized (i.e., the "earning year"). In addition, if funds remain after making other awards, incentive payments will be made to agencies in which the average number of months from removal of children from their home to finalized adoption is less than 24 months. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Preapplication coordination is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. States, tribes and territories meeting eligibility requirements are automatic applicants.
Incentive payments will be issued annually, in the fiscal year subsequent to the earning year. Payment will be based on AFCARS data submitted no later than May 15 of the fiscal year following the earning year. AFCARS data must be accepted and approved by the Children's Bureau.
May 15, 2010 AFCARS data submissions must be received no later than May 15, for subsequent fiscal years in order to be considered for incentive payments.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
Adoption and Legal Guardianship Incentive awards awards are generally made in August or September each year.
Each "earning year" will be considered on its own merit.
How are proposals selected?
How may assistance be used?
State and tribal agencies receiving incentive payments must spend the funds for services (including post-adoption services) and activities allowable under title IV-B and IV-E of the Social Security Act (the Act). Incentive funds may not be used as non-Federal (i.e., state, local or tribal) matching funds for Federal financial participation.Payments must be used to supplement and not supplant Federal or non-Federal funds for services under title IV-B or IV-E of the Act (see section 473A(f) of the Act). Amounts expended by a State in accordance with the preceding sentence shall be disregarded in determining State expenditures for purposes of Federal matching payments under Sections 423, 434, and 474 of the Social Security Act.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Agencies must identify in the Child and Family Services Plan (CFSP) or Annual Progress and Services Report (APSR) as applicable (due June 30 of each year), the services they have provided to children and families as a result of the expenditure of adoption and legal guardianship incentive payments. Should more than one fiscal year's incentive funds be expended during a given reporting period, the report should reflect the services provided and identify the fiscal year's funds expended. Actual expenditures of incentive funds must be reported annually on SF-425, Financial Status Report. No progress reports are required. Standard form (SF) 425, Financial Status Report (FSR), must be completed and submitted utilizing the established on-line data collection system. Performance monitoring is not applicable.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory Formula: The adoption and legal guardianship incentive payment payable to an agency for a fiscal year shall be equal to the sum of (a) $5,000, multiplied by the number of foster child adoptions that exceed the product of a base rate of foster child adoptions and the number of children in foster care under the supervision of the title IV-E agency on the last day of the the preceding fiscal year; (b) $4,000 multiplied by the number of foster child guardianships that exceed the product of a base rate of foster child guardianships and the number of children in foster care under the supervision of the title IV-E agency on the last day of the preceding fiscal year; (c) $7,500 multiplied by the number of pre-adolescent (ages 9 - 13) child adoptions and pre-adolescent foster child guardianships that exceeds the product of a base rate of pre-adolescent child adoptions and pre-adolescent foster guardianships and the number of pre-adolescent children (ages 9 - 13) in foster care under the supervision of the title IV-E agency on the last day of the preceding fiscal year; and (d) $10,000 multiplied by the number of older child (age 14 and older) adoptions and older foster child guardianships that exceeds the product of a base rate of older child adoptions and older foster child guardianships and the number of older children (ages 14 and older) in foster care under the supervision of the title IV-E agency on the last day of the preceding fiscal year. In the event that the total amount of incentive payments earned by title IV-E agencies exceeds the amount of funds appropriated for this purpose, payments to title IV-E agencies will be prorated accordingly.
If the total amount of incentives payable under the above categories are less than the amount of funding appropriated for a fiscal year, then the balance remaining will be used to make awards to agencies in which the average number of months from removal of children from their home to finalized adoption is less than 24 months.
This program has no matching requirements.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Payments to a title IV-E agency in a fiscal year shall remain available for use by the title IV-E agency for 36 months. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: lump sum.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. ACF Children's Bureau Regional Child Welfare Program Managers.
Gail Collins 1250 Maryland Ave, SW, 8th Floor, Washington, District of Columbia 20024 Email: email@example.com
(Formula Grants) FY 14 $37,943,000; FY 15 est $37,943,000; and FY 16 est $37,943,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
FY 2014 earning year, 30 States earned incentive payments that ranged from $9,126 to $9,757,199, with an average award amount of $1,266,375.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
ACYF-CB-IM-14-03, issued October 23, 2014.
Examples of Funded Projects