60 Month Time Limit Lawsuit

Important Notice to People Cut off FIP Cash Assistance under the 60-month Time Limit

Past Updates:

Friday, September 21st, the Michigan Supreme Court ordered the clerk to schedule a hearing on whether to grant the appeals filed by both sides or whether to take other action on the case. The parties have been asked to address the legal issues decided by the Court of Appeals: (1) whether the defendant properly implemented the 60-month policy without formal rule making and (2) whether the defendant had authority to implement the 60-month time limit and whether it conflicts with the Social Welfare Act.

The Supreme Court is allowing 35 days for any supplemental written arguments to be submitted. A hearing date has not been set at this time. The Supreme Court order is available on its website at: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20120921_s145612_127_145612_2012-09-21_or.pdf
 
At a hearing on September 24, 2012, the Center for Civil Justice agreed that the Motion for Contempt filed in June 2012 should be dismissed now that more than 9,000 applications for FIP filed by class members in this case have been processed.The Court instructed DHS to cooperate in providing information to the Center for Civil Justice as we work to ensure that all class members who applied for retroactive assistance have their cases processed and assistance provided retroactive to March 2012 if they are eligible.

On Monday, August 20, 2012, there was a hearing on the time limits case in Genesee County Circuit Court. Department of Human Services (DHS) was objecting to the Center for Civil Justice (CCJ) request for discovery, that is, certain case information, from DHS. CCJ argued that it needs the information because the way DHS was processing the “TC60” class members cash assistance applications still was leaving out some class members, and CCJ needs to find out how many have been left out. The Court had previously ordered that everyone (100%) in the class be processed by Friday, August 10th.

 

UPDATE FOR PERSONS WHO RE-APPLIED FOR FIP ASSISTANCE UNDER THE TIME LIMIT LAWSUIT : August 10, 2012 - HAS YOUR APPLICATION NOT BEEN PROCESSED???? If you or someone you know has NOT had their “stickered” application processed (approved and paid, or denied), please contact the Center for Civil Justice immediately – (989) 755-3120.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) has filed an affidavit with the Genesee Circuit Court stating that 100 percent of the TC60 applications have been processed as of August 8, 2012.

UPDATE - August 7, 2012 - Both the Plaintiffs and Defendants filed applications for Leave to Appeal in the Michigan Supreme Court. All orders remain the same until an order from the Michigan Supreme Court is given.
 
CCJ will update this website as we become aware of changes. You can “like” us on facebook or follow us on twitter @C4CivilJustice to get notice when this page changes.
 
 
WHAT'S BEEN HAPPENING IN THE COURTS:
July 16, 2012: Genesee County Circuit Court
  • Ordered DHS to process (approve and pay, or deny) all of the "TC60" applications on or before Friday, August 10, 2012. These are the applications that had a special sticker.
  • Ordered DHS to file an affidavit by August 10th that they have processed all of the "TC60" cases that were filed with the special application form.
  • If DHS does not process these applications and file the affidavit as ordered, they must appear in Court on August 20th.
  • Denied DHS's Motion for Relief from Judgement. The Circuit Court's orders that DHS's 60-month time limit violates state law and cannot be applied. It remains in force at this time. 
  • Denied DHS's Motion for an Order that would stop plaintiff's lawyers from asking DHS to produce information related to DHS's compliance with the Court's Orders.
 
What You Should Do Now:

  1. BE SURE TO KEEP GOING TO JET (WORK FIRST). IF YOU WERE REFERRED/ASSIGNED, YOU WILL NOT GET BENEFITS IF YOU FAIL TO COMPLY.
  2. If you are having problems with JET, click here.
  3. Be sure your application was received and is pending with DHS. Call MIBridges at 1-888-642-7434 to check on it. Keep track of the date you applied, keep your envelopes and keep copies of all your paperwork.
  4. If you have not been referred to JET (or been told you are deferred from JET after you filed your "TC60" application), call you caseworker.
  5. If you have been going to JET (or have been told you are deferred), be sure your caseworker knows.
  6. If you have to miss a day at JET, find out from your case worker if that reason is "good cause" and provide proof of that reason.
  7. This case will be in the courts for a while longer. The lawyers representing DHS have indicated they will try to stop FIP benefits while the case is on appeal or back in Circuit Court. It is also possible that you will be denied FIP once and for all. To protect your family, it is a good idea to do whatever you can to find a job as soon as you can. Use the resources at JET to help you.

IF YOU NEED HELP:

  • Hearing Request, Please click here. Or, you can call CCJ's office and we will mail or email you one. Our phone number is 1-800-481-4989.
  • Contact your local Legal Aid office to see if someone can represent you at the hearing or solve the problem. You can find yours here, please click here.

 

The Court ruled that DHS must give CCJ the case information requested. The Court also set a date to continue the previous contempt or show cause hearing for Thursday, September 24th. That hearing would decide whether DHS deliberately disobeyed previous court orders to process the applications. Cross-appeals by both parties from the earlier Court of Appeals decision are currently pending in the Michigan Supreme Court.