Revision 24-2; Effective April 1, 2024 


Able Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) — A SNAP recipient who is:

  • 18 through 52 years old;
  • physically and mentally able to work 20 hours per week; and
  • in a household where all members are over 18.

The ABAWD age criteria begins the month after the person turns 18 and ends the month the person turns 53.

Absent Parent — A child's parent who is not living in the home.

Accessibility Date — The date that benefits are deposited into an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account.

Account Transfer — The way an applicant’s information moves between the Marketplace and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) when a person applies for health insurance or medical programs. The account transfer from the Marketplace to HHSC, and from HHSC to the Marketplace, includes the information the applicant submitted through the original application in addition to information from verifications performed by either the Marketplace or HHSC.

Active-Duty Military Member — A person currently serving in the U.S. Armed Forces or Reserves, National Guard, or the State Military Forces or Texas State Guard, including the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force or Coast Guard.

Activity Fee — An additional cost incurred by the household associated with a structured dependent care program. Examples include a fee for an art class that is part of an adult day care program, equipment fees or an extra cost for participation in a field trip as part of a summer program.

Adequate Notice — A notice of adverse action that expires the same day it is sent.

Administrative Renewal — The method used to redetermine eligibility for most Medical Programs, including Medicaid for the Elderly and People with Disabilities (MEPD) and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The automated process uses existing applicant information, electronic data source information and reasonable compatibility when income verification is required. This results in:

  • an automated eligibility determination; or
  • the requirement of more information from the applicant to manually process the redetermination.

Administrative Review — A desk review of the fair hearing record by a Texas Health and Human Services (HHS) attorney to determine if the hearing officer's decision is correct. A request for an administrative review must be submitted in writing within 30 calendar days from the date of the hearing officer's decision.

Administrative Terminal Application (ATA) — A software program accessible on one or more Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) desktop computers in each office. It is used to issue Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards and replacements. The ATA allows access to the EBT system and may also be used for inquiry on EBT-related information, expedited Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit authorization, and account transaction updates to the EBT database.

Advance Notice — A notice of adverse action that expires 13 calendar days after the date on the notice.

Advanced Authentication — Personal security questions generated by third-party software to perform authentication of an applicant's identity before granting the person an account through with Case Visibility.

Advanced Nurse Practitioner — A registered nurse with additional training and certification in a specific area of medicine. Examples include certified nurse-midwives, clinical nurse specialists, and pediatric nurse practitioners.

Advanced Premium Tax Credit (APTC) — The payment of a tax credit by the federal government, provided on an advanced basis or at tax filing time, to an eligible person enrolled in a qualified health plan (QHP) through the Marketplace.

Adverse Action — Any HHSC action resulting in denial, suspension, reduction or termination of assistance. The term also applies to decisions for protective and restricted payments.

Agriculturally Related Activities — Employment:

  • on a farm or ranch performing field work about planting, cultivating or harvesting operations; or
  • in canning, packing, ginning, seed conditioning or related research or processing operations.

Aid — A benefit, coverage or service in programs that HHSC administers.

Alert — A system or user-generated reminder that action needs to be taken on a case or a notification that an action has already taken place.

Alerts — A functional area on a navigation bar that allows eligibility staff to request alerts and view outstanding and processed alerts.

Alien Sponsor — A person who signed an affidavit of support (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services [USCIS] Form I-864 or I-864-A) on or after Dec. 19, 1997, agreeing to support an alien as a condition of the alien's entry into the U.S. Note: Not all aliens must obtain a sponsor before being admitted into the U.S.

Alimony — Payments received from a spouse or former spouse under a divorce or separation decree. It is also referred to as spousal support.

Alimony Paid — Payments to a spouse or former spouse under a divorce or separation decree. It is also referred to as spousal support paid.

Alternate Payee — A person who receives the benefits for the EDG when people on the EDG are unable or ineligible to receive them. Types of alternate payees include a court appointed guardian, EBT representative, Financial Management Information System (FMIS) payee, long-term care (LTC) payee, protective payee and representative payee.

Annualize — Averaging income over a 12-month period.

Annuity — A series of payments paid under a contract and made at regular intervals over more than one full year. Payments may be either fixed (under which one receives a definite amount) or variable (not fixed). A person may buy the contract alone or with the help of an employer.

Annulment — A court order declaring a marriage invalid.

Appeal — A request for a fair hearing concerning an HHSC action. Appeals are logged and updated in the Hearing functional area on the navigation bar.

Application — A form that a person or household uses to apply for assistance. These include Form H1010, Texas Works Application for Assistance — Your Texas Benefits, or Form H1205, Texas Streamlined Application.

Application Registration — The functional area where a person's application for assistance is recorded.

Application Visibility — Type of account given to an applicant who has selected not to go through Advanced Authentication. People with Application Visibility accounts may only apply for benefits and view and modify applications created under their username.

Applied Income — The countable amount of income for TANF after allowing deductions for tax dependents, child support, alimony and persons a legal parent is legally obligated to support.

Assets — All items of monetary value owned by a person.

Assignable — Time periods that are available to be used to schedule appointments using the Scheduling functional area.

Asylee — A person granted asylum under Section 208 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

Authorization Code — A code that identifies a retailer as a Food and Nutrition Service (FNS)-participating store. The code is used to request permission to use the Lone Star Card in a transaction.

Authorized Representative (AR) — A person or organization designated by an applicant or recipient to take the following actions on the applicant’s behalf:

  • sign an application;
  • complete and submit a renewal form;
  • receive copies of the applicant’s or recipient's notices in the preferred language selected on the application and other communications from the agency;
  • designate a health plan; and
  • act on behalf of the applicant or recipient in all other matters with the agency, such as reporting changes.

Automated Income Check Process — The first step in a periodic income check (PIC). During this step, information from electronic data sources is automatically requested and a reasonable compatibility test is run. This process occurs without staff action.

Automated Renewal Process — The first step in an administrative renewal. During this step, information from electronic data sources is automatically requested, reasonable compatibility is run when income verification is required, and correspondence is sent to the recipient. This process occurs without staff or specialist action.

Availability Date — The date that benefits are deposited into the recipient’s Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account.

Availability Period — For TANF, the availability period is two fiscal years after the benefit was issued. HHSC expunges these benefits at the end of each state fiscal year (Aug. 31).


Balance Receipt — A paper receipt that shows the available balance in an person's cash or food account.

Basic Utility Allowance (BUA) — Deduction given to a SNAP household that has utility costs but does not qualify for the standard utility allowance (SUA).

Batch Processing — Actions postponed until a later time when they can be processed by the system more efficiently. In many instances, batch processing occurs overnight, when Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) offices are closed and the system is not being heavily used throughout the state. Examples of batch processing include schedule system-generated correspondence to be printed at and mailed from a central site, mail out review packets at scheduled intervals from the central mail facility, and gathering information and share it through interfaces with other agencies.

Batch Scheduling — Including an appointment date and time with eligibility staff within application packets mailed from the central mail facility. See Batch Processing.

Battered Alien — A battered spouse, battered child or parent, or child of a battered person with a pending petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). 

BENDEX (Beneficiary and Earnings Data Exchange) — A computer tape match from the Social Security Administration that provides Social Security and Medicare information about Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) recipients. The system generates an alert when the SSA Benefit amount on file does not match the information on the BENDEX file.

Beneficiary — The person named to receive benefits.

Benefit Issuance — The functional area that supports the issuance and tracking of benefits calculated in the Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC) and authorized in disposition. See dispose.

Birth Verification System (BVS) — The inquiry system includes birth records of people born in Texas. Eligibility staff access BVS as a source to verify age, relationship and citizenship.

Blocked — Time periods that are designated for specific purposes. They cannot be used to schedule appointments using the Scheduling functional area.

Boarder — A person paying reasonable compensation for room and meals. A boarder can receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits only with the household where they board. Note: This does not include anyone who otherwise qualifies as a resident of a drug and alcohol treatment center, federally subsidized housing for the elderly, a qualifying group living arrangement, a shelter for battered persons, or a shelter for the homeless.

Bona Fide Agent — A person who is familiar with an applicant and knowledgeable of the person's financial affairs.

Budgetary Needs — The full basic needs amount as defined by Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) necessary for a family to obtain food, clothing, housing, utilities, and incidentals such as phone, laundry, and recreation. This calculation is based on family size and is used in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) 100 percent budgetary needs gross income test.

Budgeting — The method used to determine eligibility and benefits for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Medical Programs, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by calculating income and deductions.

Business Day — Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. local time. Business day excludes Saturday, Sunday, and holidays designated by a federal or state agency.


Cafeteria Plan — Flexible fringe benefit plans offered to employees by their employers.

Canceled Debts — Debts that have been canceled, forgiven, or discharged. The canceled amount is included as countable income on federal income tax returns. Examples include loan foreclosures and canceled credit card debt.

Capital Gains — A profit from the sale of property or an investment when the sale price is higher than the initial purchase price. This includes profits from the sale of stocks, bonds or real estate.

Capital Goods — The accumulated possessions (property, goods and products) used to produce income or other goods.

Cardholders — Persons authorized to use the Lone Star Card to access benefits in the household's Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account(s). There are two types of cardholders: primary cardholders and secondary cardholders.

Card Registration — When a cardholder requests EBT account access for a newly issued initial or replacement Lone Star Card by authenticating their identity and selecting a PIN.

Card Sleeve — A durable paper envelope folded to the dimensions of the plastic EBT card. The sleeve stores the card and protects the magnetic strip from being damaged by scratches. The sleeve also has important information printed on it for easy reference, such as the Lone Star Help Desk number.

Caretaker — For:

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) — An adult whose needs are included in a TANF grant because the adult is within the required degree of relationship and is financially eligible per TANF policy.
  • Type Program (TP) 08, Parents and Caretaker Relatives Medicaid — A person who supervises and cares for a dependent child. The person must be a legal parent(s) or other caretaker relative within the required degree of relationship who meets the income limits for that program.

Caretaker Relative — For:

  • TANF — a disqualified legal parent, second parent, or a non-parent relative certified as caretaker.
  • For Type Program (TP) 08, Parents and Caretaker Relatives Medicaid — A relative within the required degree of relationship, other than a legal parent, caring for a dependent child who meets the income limits for that program.

Carryover Standby List — Applicants from a previous day's standby list who have not been interviewed.

Cascade Logic — A hierarchy of logic used to build Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) and evaluate eligibility for Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) programs and types of assistance. The EDG is built and eligibility is established at the highest level. If there are no eligible members after cascade logic is applied, the household is ineligible for the program. See definitions of Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC), rebuild EDGrun EDBC and Wrap Up.

Case — All the people living together and alien sponsors, who are related by EDG affiliation. The people may or may not be included in EDGs as certified members.

Case Mode — Status of a case that identifies that:

  • action has been initiated on an EDG in a case (Intake, Complete Action, Change Action, Special Review, Conversion);
  • all the EDGs in a case are approved (Ongoing); and
  • all the EDGs in a case are denied (Ongoing).

Case Number — A unique 10-digit number that identifies a group of EDGs. See Case.

Case Visibility — Type of account given to an applicant who has been through Advanced Authentication so is granted a Case Visibility level account. With this type of access, a person can view and change an application created under their username. They can also change any case data for cases where they are the head of household, an adult member within the household, or an authorized representative. 

Catchment Area — The area covered by service.

Categorically Eligible Household — Households where all members are either eligible for or receive benefits from TANF, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or state-financed general assistance programs. They have already gone through the eligibility determination for those programs. These households may bypass the income and resources tests and are deemed financially eligible. There are two types of categorically eligible households:

  1. A Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) household whose members are all approved for TANF or SSI. A household member is a TANF or SSI recipient if the person is approved for TANF or SSI but the benefit:  
    • has not yet been received;
    • is suspended; or
    • is being recouped.
  2. A SNAP household that includes members authorized to receive TANF non-cash services and whose household gross income is less than 165 percent of the Federal Poverty Limit (FPL) for its size and meets the resource criteria.

Certificate of Coverage — A certificate that serves as proof of a Medicaid recipient's most recent period of Medicaid coverage. The certificate is a requirement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), and is sent to denied recipients by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). Former Medicaid recipients may request a certificate within 24 months after their Medicaid is denied by calling 800-723-4789.

Certification Date — The date that eligibility staff dispose the EDG to certify an applicant.

Certification Period — The period of eligibility established at disposition. Not all HHSC programs and types of assistance have certification periods.

Certified Group — The members in an EDG who are eligible for a given program.

  • SNAP and TANF — Multiple people may be certified on a single EDG.
  • Medical Programs that follow modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) rules, except CHIP perinatal — Only one person is certified on the EDG.
  • CHIP perinatal — The mother and child will be certified on a single EDG during the month the child is born. After, only the child will be certified on the EDG.

Change Action — A data collection interview mode that allows eligibility staff to navigate to pages on which they want to update or record information. See Case Mode.

Child — A child is an adoptive, step, or natural child who is under 19.

Child in a Two-Parent Family — For:

  • TANF — A child who lives with either one or both parents, or a parent and stepparent, and one or both parents or step-parent do not receive TANF benefits.
  • TANF-State Program (SP) — A child who lives with both parents, or a parent and stepparent, and both parents and stepparent (if included in the certified group) receive TANF benefits.

Child Support — A payment made from a biological or adoptive parent to a biological or adoptive child. Child support may be:

  • formal – court-ordered or legally mandated; or
  • voluntary – not court-ordered and given voluntarily when the child’s caretaker or the person making the payment states the purpose of the payment is to support the child.

Child Support Disregard — The first $75 of the total child support collected in a month that is subtracted before determining TANF eligibility or benefits. After certification, the Office of Attorney General (OAG) sends the person the first $75 received on monthly child support collections. If the total collection is less than $75, then the amount of the collection is sent to the person .

Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) — Medical coverage for children under 19 whose family income exceeds the limits for Children's Medicaid.

Children's Medicaid — Medical coverage for children whose family income is under the applicable income limit. In most instances, Children's Medicaid relates to comprehensive policy for Type Programs (TPs) 43, 44, 45 and 48, unless specifically stated otherwise in a handbook section.

CHIP Perinatal — Medical services to unborn children of pregnant women ineligible for Medicaid due to income or alien status.

Choices County Service Levels — Counties designated by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) as Choices counties. TWC has designated all counties in Texas as Choices counties, and the Local Workforce Development Boards (LWDBs), after coordination with the HHSC state office, assign a service level designation for each county depending upon services available in that county. The two levels of service are:

  • full service — having a significant presence of Choices staff; or
  • minimum service — has little or no presence of Choices staff.

Claim — An amount owed by a person for an overpayment of benefits.

Clearinghouse — A centrally located site that processes medical bills submitted by applicants for Medically Needy with Spend Down. Functions of the clearinghouse include:

  • determining if a medical bill can be counted for spend down;
  • corresponding with the applicant about eligible and ineligible medical bills;
  • determining if and when the applicant meets spend down; and
  • notifying the applicant and the eligibility system when spend down is met.

Cold Call — A phone call initiated by HHSC staff to a responsible household member or AR to obtain case related information.

Collateral Call — A phone call initiated by HHSC staff to a collateral contact to obtain verification of the household’s situation.

Collateral Contact — A person the advisor can contact to verify a person's information. The person's may not have a vested interest in the household's situation.

Colonias — Unincorporated and unregulated settlements (neighborhoods) along the U.S. and Mexico border.

Combat Pay — Supplemental incentive payments for hazardous duty and special pay for duty subject to hostile fire or imminent danger.

Combat Zone — The geographic area or country to which a military member is deployed for combat.

Commingled Resources — Resources of a TANF or SSI recipient combined with those of a non-TANF or SSI household member.

Common Law Marriage — Relationship where the two parties are both 18 years or older:

  • are free to marry;
  • live together; and
  • hold out to the public that they are a married couple.

A minor child in Texas cannot legally enter a common law marriage unless the claim of common law marriage began before Sept. 1, 1997.

Communal Dining — A public or non-profit establishment approved by Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) that prepares and serves meals to elderly people or those who receive SSI and their spouses.

Community Supervision — The placement of a misdemeanor or felony offender under supervision for a specified length of time ordered by the court. Sentences are served in the community rather than in jail or prison. Also formally known as (adult) probation.

Complete Action — A data collection interview mode that sets up the driver flow for a complete review of all eligibility requirements in an ongoing case. See case mode and interview mode.

Complete Review — A re-evaluation of ongoing eligibility.

Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) — A utility assistance program funded annually by the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). CEAP replaced the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP).

Conditional Entrant — A person granted conditional entry under Section 203(a)(7) of the INA as in effect before April 1, 1980.

Continued Benefits — Continuing or restoring benefits to the level authorized immediately before the notice of adverse action.

Continuing Scheme — A situation in which a recipient commits two or more acts. This includes falsifying a document or a statement, or providing false information in an interview, with the intent to commit fraud. Failure to report a required HHSC program change in conjunction with one or more of these acts  may be considered a basis to commit fraud.

Continuous Eligibility — A period where a person remains eligible during a continuous eligibility period regardless of any change in circumstances, except for:

  • reaching the maximum age for that specific program;
  • death;
  • voluntary disenrollment;
  • change in state residence;
  • state error in the eligibility determination; or
  • fraud, abuse, or perjury attributed to the people or person’s representative

Convertible Bond — A bond that can be converted to cash according to program policy. Convertible bonds are countable resources.

Copayment — Payment made directly to a provider according to a fee schedule.

Correspondence — The functional area in which system and user-generated notices and forms are processed and stored. The notices and forms processed in this functional area are also called correspondence and linked to a specific case. Users cannot delete system-generated correspondence.  See batch processingpending correspondenceprint modeprint typesystem-generated and user-generated.

Cost-Sharing Reductions — Federal payments toward out-of-pocket costs made for an eligible person enrolled in a qualified health plan (QHP) through the Marketplace.

Court Awards — Taxable money that a person receives as the result of a lawsuit, such as compensation for lost wages or punitive damages awards.

Crime Victim's Compensation — Payments from the funds authorized by state legislation to assist a person who:

  • has been a victim of violent crime;
  • was the spouse, parent, sibling or adult child of a victim who died as a result of a violent crime; or
  • is the guardian of a victim of a violent crime.

The payments are distributed by the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) in monthly payments or in a lump-sum payment.

Cuban or Haitian Entrant — Admitted under Section 501(e) of the Refugee Education Assistance Act of 1980.


Data Broker — An online portal used to obtain financial and other background information about applicants and recipients. The data broker vendor collects and combines information from many data sources. This information is compared to the application and details from the interview to identify case discrepancies and reduce the possibility of case error and fraud. See Permissible Purpose.

Data Collection — The functional area where individual household, non-financial, resource, income, and deduction information is recorded for use in building Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) and determining eligibility for types of assistance. See EDBC and Driver Flow.

Deductible Part of Self-Employment Tax — A federal income tax deduction for self-employed people paying self-employment taxes.

Deferred Adjudication — A type of probation where the decision for a conviction is postponed until the end of the probationary period.

Dependent Child — For:

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) — A child who meets the definition of deprivation and who lives with a relative who meets the relationship requirement.
  • Type Program (TP) 08, Parents and Caretaker Relatives Medicaid – A child who is 18 or under, and a full-time student meeting the school attendance requirement. A child who will not graduate until after the month of their 19th birthday is not considered a dependent child after the month of their 18th birthday.

Deportation (or Removal) Withheld — Deportation is being withheld under Section 243(h) of the INA, or removal is withheld under Section 241(b)(3) of the INA.

Deprivation — Loss of parental support caused by death, incapacity, continued absence of one or both natural or adoptive parents, or because of unemployment or underemployment of both parents in a two-parent family.

Derivative Citizenship — U.S. citizenship that is claimed by a person born outside of the U. S. to one or both U.S. citizen parents.

Detail Page — Click the Edit or View icon to edit or view details of a record listed on a Summary Page.

Disaster Benefits — Benefits issued to provide short-term assistance for households recovering from a disaster. 

Discovery Date — The date a person learns of a change. The discovery date is compared with the report date to determine if a change is reported timely.

Dispose — To authorize an Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) so eligibility is established or denied.

Disqualified Person — Someone who is normally considered a participating member of a household but whose needs are not considered because they failed to meet or comply with a program requirement.

Domestic Production Activities Deduction — A federal income tax deduction that a person may receive for certain qualified production activities. These include  construction of real property or lease, rental, license, sale, exchange, or other disposition of personal property, computer software, sound recordings, produced films, produced electricity, natural gas, or potable water.

Domicile — A home maintained or being established, as shown by continuation of responsibility for day-to-day care of the child, by the relative who the child lives.

Driver Flow — The logical sequence of data collection pages that appear as a case is completed or read. The driver flow is determined by the programs, types of assistance, and answers to questions as the case is worked. In some interview modes, staff cannot advance to pages that have not yet been accessed as part of the driver flow.

Duplicate Application — An application filed after another application has already been filed and the new application:

  • does not include a request for programs different from programs requested on the initial application;
  • does not include a request for programs different from programs currently received by the applicant; and
  • is not needed to process a redetermination.


Earned Income — Income a person receives for a certain activity or work.

Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC) — Payments from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to people with gross monthly earnings at or below levels established by the IRS.

Educational Expenses or Student Loan Interest — A federal income tax deduction for people paying interest on student loans or for people with education expenses such as tuition, fees, room and board, books and other supplies.

Educator Expenses — Expenses for which educators, kindergarten through grade 12 teachers, counselors, principals or aides can receive a federal income tax deduction. Qualified expenses include purchased books, supplies, equipment and other classroom materials.

Effective Month — The first month benefits can be affected based on the monthly cutoff date or applicable policy for advance and adequate notice of adverse action.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) — A system that uses electronic technology to complete some of a benefit program's functional requirements. EBT involves computers, a variety of cards or types of cards, electronic funds transfer techniques, automated teller machines (ATMs), point-of-sale terminals or other types of terminals, and software to complete the EBT process without the loss of program integrity or individual confidentiality.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Account — A benefit account established by the EBT system where HHSC deposits the household's benefits. There are three types of benefit accounts:

  • an account that contains the household's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) food benefits;
  • an account that contains the household's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash grant amount; or
  • a combined benefits account.

The person or their representative uses the Lone Star Card and a personal identification number (PIN) to access benefits in the account.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card — A plastic card called the Lone Star Card issued to primary and secondary cardholders that allows the cardholders access to the benefits in the EBT system. A stripe of magnetic material, which is machine-readable and allows for the activation of point-of-sale equipment, is affixed to the back of the card at the time of manufacture.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Issuance Staff — An HHSC employee who issues and registers EBT cards for people in the local HHSC office.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Regional Coordinator — An HHSC employee designated to oversee, monitor, lead regional planning and act as a point of contact for EBT security procedures.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Representative — A primary cardholder other than the case name. This person has access to the EBT account for the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG). This may be a TANF representative payee or protective payee or a SNAP authorized representative for a resident of a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center or Group Living Arrangement. See Alternate Payee.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Site Coordinator — An HHSC employee designated to ensure local offices comply with guidelines on security and accountability operations.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) System — A system HHSC staff with security access use to issue and replace Lone Star Cards. Staff also use the EBT system to perform such functions as inquiry, account transaction update to the vendor database and, in certain very restricted situations, priority SNAP benefit authorization.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Vendor — A company that performs EBT-related services for the state of Texas.

Electronic Data Sources (ELDS) — Verification sources that are available electronically and presented to staff in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) during Data Collection.

Eligibility — The functional area that supports Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC).

Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC) — The process of applying program policy to household, non-financial, resource, income and deduction information entered in the Data Collection functional area. This information is used in the EDBC process to build Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) and determine eligibility for programs and types of assistance. See Cascade Logic.

Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) — Members of a household whose needs, resources, income and deductions are considered in determining eligibility for benefits. The EDG includes members who are eligible and may include members who are not certified for benefits.

Emancipated Minor — A person 17 and under who has been married. The marriage must not have been annulled.

Emergency Medicaid — All types of emergency Medicaid coverage programs for people who are nonimmigrants, undocumented aliens or certain legal permanent resident aliens who have emergency medical conditions and who, except for alien status, would be Medicaid-eligible. When the term is used in the handbook, it means all the following programs combined:

  • Type Assistance (TA) 31, Parents and Caretaker Relatives – Emergency
  • Type Program (TP) 32, Medically Needy with Spend Down – Emergency
  • TP 33, Children 1-5 – Emergency
  • TP 34, Children 6-18 – Emergency
  • TP 35, Children Under 1 – Emergency
  • TP 36, Pregnant Women – Emergency

Emergency Medical Condition — An eligibility requirement for Emergency Medicaid for nonimmigrants, undocumented aliens and certain legal permanent resident aliens. It is a medical condition (including emergency labor and delivery) manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity (including severe pain) that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably have been expected to result in:

  • placing the patient's health in serious jeopardy;
  • seriously impairing the patient's bodily functions; or
  • causing serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.

Employable Household Member — A person whose earnings are countable and who:

  • is 16 through 59;
  • does not meet the criteria in B-432, Definition of Disability; and
  • is currently unemployed.

Employer-Paid Taxes — Taxes that are paid by the employer on behalf of the employee rather than deducting the tax amount from the employee's wages. The amount the employer pays is counted as part of the person's gross income.

Employment and Training (E&T) Staff — Non-HHSC staff involved in the operation of the SNAP E&T program.

Employment Services Program (ESP) — ESP consists of two programs. One program is the Choices program for TANF recipients, and the other is the SNAP Employment and Training (E&T) program for SNAP recipients. The goal of ESP is to prepare recipients for employment and help them find and keep a job.

Equity — The fair market value of an item minus all money owed on it and the cost associated with its sale or transfer.

Escrow — An escrow account is an account a mortgage company sets up for the homeowner as part of their monthly mortgage payment. The mortgage company uses money in the account to pay annual property taxes, home insurance premiums and sometimes homeowner association fees on behalf of the homeowner.

Essential Person — The need for a particular member of a household to be in the home on a continuous basis because another member has a (certified) mental or physical impairment.

Evaluative Conclusion — Staff's decision, subject to supervisory approval, to accept something other than a birth or hospital certificate or baptismal record as proof of age and relationship.

Excess Payment — A payment sent to a TANF recipient by the Office of the Attorney General (OAG). When the OAG receives a child support collection on the current monthly obligation and that payment exceeds the TANF grant plus any unreimbursed assistance, the excess is sent to the person.

Excluded Provider — A Medicaid provider who is not allowed to continue participating in the Texas Medicaid program for a period of time because of fraud conviction, program abuse and other reasons.

Expedited Service — Special, faster processing of SNAP applicants who qualify for an emergency food allotment, for active-duty military members and their dependents applying for medical coverage and for pregnant women applicants who qualify for current or ongoing medical coverage.

Expenses of Fee-Basis Government Officials — Federal income tax deductible employment-related expenses paid for or accrued by employees of a state or political subdivision who are compensated on a fee basis.

Expenses of Performing Artists — Federal income tax deductible expenses for qualified performing artists paid or accrued through performances while serving as an employee in the performing arts.

Expenses of Reservists — Federal income tax deductible expenses for National Guard and military reserve members who traveled more than 100 miles from home for service.

Expunged Benefits — Benefits that are removed from an EBT account by the issuer of the benefits.


Fair Hearing — A meeting conducted by a regional hearing officer with an applicant or individual who disagrees with and wishes to appeal some action taken on the individual's case.

Fair Market Value — Amount of money an item would bring if sold in the current local market.

Falsified Document — Form H1010, Texas Works Application for Assistance — Your Texas Benefits; Form H1019, Report of Change; or another signed and dated document that does not report all current income or circumstances.

Falsified Interview — An interview with agency personnel at which time the individual does not report all current income or accurate circumstances.

Falsified Statement — A statement made by an individual, orally or in writing, that is not true, such as claiming to have been without work since a certain date, when the individual was employed during that time period.

Family Violence — An act by a member of a family or household against another member of the family or household that is:

  • intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury or assault, or that is a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm or bodily injury or assault, not including defensive measures to protect oneself; or
  • intended to inflict emotional harm, including an act of emotional abuse.

File Clearance — This feature determines whether an applicant has a case record with HHSC. When an individual is added, File Clearance can be processed in Application Registration. If File Clearance is not processed in Application Registration, the system will perform it in Data Collection. File Clearance compares the individual's demographic information against databases for potential matches. These databases contain information for individuals who are currently on assistance and for individuals who have applied for or received assistance in the past.

First Cousin Once Removed — A person who is either one's first cousin's child or the parent's first cousin.

Fixed Income — Unearned income that does not vary.

Fluctuating Income — Income in which the amount varies because of an increase or decrease in hours worked, rate of pay, or inclusion of a bonus.

Four Months Post-Medical — Medicaid coverage extended for a maximum of four months after denial of a case because of spousal support income.

Fugitive — An individual fleeing to avoid prosecution of or confinement for a felony criminal conviction or found by a court to be violating federal or state probation or parole.

Functional Area — Functions and processes that appear in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) Left Navigation area and represent a particular business process. Each functional area contains pages that allow authorized staff to perform activities related to the business process. The functional areas that are available to the user are determined by the user's job title and security role(s).


General Equivalency Diploma (GED) — A high school equivalency certificate issued after a person completes a State Board of Education-approved high school equivalency program.

General Residential Operations Facility — Residential care facilities that provide a live-in house parent model of care for children under their care. The house parent assumes responsibility and acts in lieu of the parent in meeting the children’s ongoing needs. These facilities have limited power of attorney to obtain health care and educational services for the children under their care.

Good Cause — A term used to indicate that a person has an acceptable reason for not complying with a program requirement.

Grandparent Payment System (GPS) — An electronic, web-based data system used to inquire about the issuance of archived TANF one-time Grandparent Payments. The same benefit is now called One-Time TANF for Relatives, with payment records stored in TIERS.

Grant in Jeopardy — The Office of the Attorney General's (OAG's) designation for a case that is potentially ineligible for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) grant because the OAG received a child support collection on the current monthly obligation and it equals or exceeds the TANF grant plus the disregard.


Health Insurance Premium Payment (HIPP) — A reimbursement program administered by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s (HHSC’s) Third-Party Resource Unit, which pays for the cost of premiums, coinsurance, and deductibles. The program reimburses the policy holder for private health insurance payroll deductions for Medicaid-eligible persons when HHSC determines that it is cost-effective.

Health Savings Account — A savings account for medical-related expenses that is available to taxpayers. The money contributed to these accounts is not subject to federal income tax at the time of deposit.

Hearing — The functional area where individual appeals are recorded and tracked.

HHSC — The Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

HHSC IEVS Staff — HHSC eligibility field staff who process Automated System for Office of Inspector General (ASOIG) Match Texas Works Messages and MEPD Long Term Care (LTC) IEVS Matches.

High School Diploma — Certification issued by a state-accredited school to a student who successfully completes the curriculum requirements for secondary school as approved by the State Board of Education.

Historical Correspondence — Records of forms and notices that have been printed. Refer to CorrespondencePrint Mode and Print Type.

Historical Data — Records of case, Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) and individual information.

Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) — A federal program that pays benefits to help eligible people pay utility costs.

Home School — A type of education where children are taught by their parents, or someone acting in parental authority, at home, using a set curriculum. The parent oversees the curriculum and ensures that the children are actually being educated.

Homeless Household — Households that have no regular nighttime residence or their primary nighttime residence is a:

  • supervised shelter that provides temporary living quarters such as a welfare hotel, family violence shelter or congregate shelter;
  • place not intended for regular sleeping quarters such as a hallway, bus station or lobby;
  • halfway house or similar institution which provides temporary housing for people intended to be institutionalized; or
  • temporary quarters in another person's home for 90 days or less. After 90 days in the same person's home, the household is no longer considered homeless.

Hotline (TANF/SNAP Complaints) — Toll-free number (877-787-8999) where staff receive complaints for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) cases.

Housing and Urban Development (HUD) — U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.


Identical Application — One or more exact copies of an application previously submitted by an applicant.

Illegally Present Alien — A non-citizen living in the U.S. without proper approval from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and who has received a final order of deportation.

Immigrant — An alien who abandons residence in a foreign country to live in the U.S. as a permanent resident, for example a lawful permanent resident (LPR).

Inaccessible Resources — Resources not legally available to the person.

Independent Child — A child who does not live with a parent and who is:

  • able to apply for Medicaid on the child's own behalf; or
  • eligible for Medicaid because a responsible person who is not within the degree of relationship required for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) applies on the child's behalf.

Independent Living Payments — Payments from Title IV-E funds that are distributed by Child Protective Services to certain people when they leave foster care. Payments:

  • are received for a minimum of three months,
  • cannot exceed $300 a month,
  • cannot total more than $800, and
  • are intended for expenses other than room and board.

Indian Tribal Household — A household in which at least one household member is recognized as a tribal member by any Indian tribe.

Indigent Alien — A sponsored alien whose total income in the month of application does not exceed 130 percent of the federal poverty level for the alien's household size. The following factors are considered in determining the alien's total income:

  • the alien's own income;
  • cash contributions of the sponsor or others; and
  • the value of in-kind assistance provided by the sponsor or others.

Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) — An account similar to a savings account that enables a person to save earned income for a qualifying purpose. IDAs are generally matched dollar-for-dollar with funds from private citizens, corporations, banks, communities, or charitable organizations. The matching funds are inaccessible to the person if the funds are paid directly to a bank or loan institution, a person selling a home, or a business account.

Individual Number — A unique nine-digit number that identifies any person known to the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS).

Individual Retirement Account (IRA) — An account in which a person contributes an amount of money to supplement retirement income, regardless of their participation in a group retirement plan.

Individual Retirement Account (IRA) Deduction — A federal income tax deduction for people who contributed to a traditional IRA.

Individually Identifiable Health Information — Information that either identifies or could be used to identify a person that relates to the:

  • past, present or future physical, mental health condition of the person;
  • provision of health care to the person; or
  • past, present or future payment for the provision of health care to the person.

Ineligible Alien — A non-citizen whose alien status makes them ineligible for program benefits.

Initial Benefits — Benefits issued for the first month of eligibility. Also benefits issued for the first month of eligibility after a break in eligibility of at least one month.

In-Kind Contribution — Any gain or benefit to a person that is not in the form of money paid directly to the person such as clothing, public housing or food.

Interview staff — Eligibility staff responsible for interviewing applicants and recipients to establish program eligibility.

Inquiry — Refers to the functional area that allows users to view case, Eligibility Determination Group (EDG), and individual information. See functional area.

Institution of Higher Education — Any public or private college, community college, junior college, technical institute, or university that usually requires a high school diploma or equivalent certificate such as a general equivalency diploma (GED), to enter.

Interactive Voice Response (IVR) — A dial-in inquiry system (also known as Automated Voice Response [AVR]) that provides 24-hour access to automated account information via a digital phone. This is a toll-free number (2-1-1 or 877-541-7905) that allows people to inquire on the status of their case, their next appointment time, or to determine if Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) received information. The caller must provide the head of household’s Social Security number (SSN) or the case number and date of birth of a household member to access information.

Intentional Program Violation (IPV) — The act of intentionally making a false or misleading statement, or misrepresenting, concealing or withholding facts for the purpose of receiving assistance under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Medicaid program. Also, the act of trafficking in SNAP benefits. A household member may be charged with an IPV even if the person has not actually received benefits to which they are not entitled.

Interfaces — The functional area that exchanges information with other systems and agencies.

Interview Mode — A designation in TIERS Data Collection that queues the driver flow through appropriate pages according to the type of action.


Judicial Review — A review of the fair hearing decision by a district court in Travis County to determine whether the agency decision is correct. A petition for judicial review must be filed by the appellant in a district court in Travis County within 30 calendar days after the date the administrative decision is issued.

Jury Duty Pay — Taxable income received as compensation for jury duty.


Keogh — An individual retirement account (IRA) for a self-employed individual.


Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) — A person lawfully admitted for legal permanent residence in the U.S. This category also includes Amerasians admitted under Section 584 of the Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriation Act of 1988.

Left Navigation — The list of functional areas that appears on the left side of the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) page. A user can click the plus sign next to a functional area or sub-functional areas to display the pages available within that area.

Legal Parents — Mother, by having given birth to the child, by proof of adoption, legal document or court adjudication or father, by proof of adoption, legal document, court adjudication or his acknowledgement of paternity.

Legal Requirements — The non- financial eligibility requirements for a Temporary Assistance for Needy Families(TANF) or Medicaid child, such as age, relationship, domicile, citizenship, Social Security number (SSN), and deprivation.

Legally Obligated Child Support — Court order or a legally recorded document requiring the payments of child support to be made in the form of cash, medical support, or to a third party. The official document indicates to and for whom the support is paid, the frequency and the amount of payment.

Licensed Practitioner — A person who has met certain educational requirements and passed an examination to be licensed in the state of Texas and regulated by a state board.

Life Estate — Income a person receives from ownership of property that they only possess for the duration of their life, such as rental income.

Liquid Resources — Resources that are readily negotiable, such as cash, checking or savings accounts, Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cash account, savings certificates, stocks or bonds.

Lock-in — A status created by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) for certain people to help contain Medicaid costs, which allows additional review of high Medicaid users. Those who see several doctors each month and make questionable visits to hospital emergency rooms are limited to seeing one doctor or using one pharmacy for a minimum of six months. Persons with illnesses that require expensive treatment are not subject to lock-in status.

Logical Unit of Work (LUW) — A set of Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) pages that must be completed before the information entered on these pages is saved. The LUW is represented by a set of tabs at the top of a TIERS page. To ensure the information is saved in an LUW in Data Collection, the user can click on the Next button to advance to the next LUW or on the Previous button to return to the previous LUW. The user reaches the end of the driver flow at the Case Assignment page and must use the Left Navigation to return to specific pages in Data Collection. Clicking the Add, Update or Submit button saves information on specific pages.

Lone Star Card — See Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card.

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) — The federal program that funds assistance for energy costs for low-income households.

Lump-Sum Payment — A financial settlement that often involves funds accumulated over an extended period and that is paid in a single payment.


Manage Office Resources (MOR) — The functional area that supports the administrative structure in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) and relationships between regional offices and their local offices, units, and employees.

Managed Care — A health care delivery system with the aim of controlling costs. In this system, patients go to their primary care physician to obtain other health services such as specialty medical care, surgery or physical therapy. Managed care includes the health maintenance organization (HMO) model.

Management — The way in which a household pays its expenses with available income.

Managing Conservator — A person designated by a court to have daily legal responsibility for a child.

Manual Voucher Transaction — A paper-based debit transaction completed by the food retailer when the automated Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) system is down or unavailable. A transaction may also be pre-authorized by phone.

Marketplace — The governmental entity that makes qualified health plans available to qualified people, qualified employers or both. The Marketplace in Texas is operated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Marketplace is also known as the Exchange, Health Insurance Marketplace, and Federally Facilitated Marketplace (FFM).

Marriage — A legally or formally recognized union between two people. A same-sex marriage that occurred before June 26, 2015, is considered valid effective June 26, 2015. A same-sex marriage that occurred on or after June 26, 2015, is considered valid on the date it occurred.

Married Minor — A person, 14-17 years, who is married. These people must have parental consent or court permission. A person under 18 may not be a party to an informal (common law) marriage.

MCHIP — Medicaid eligible children, 6-18 years, whose MAGI household income is between 109 percent and 133 percent of the federal poverty limit (FPL) and for whom the state receives enhanced federal matching funds (CHIP funding). Before the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), these children were eligible for CHIP. With the implementation of the ACA, these children are eligible for Medicaid. This type of coverage is also known as CHIP-funded Medicaid expansion. 

Meal delivery services — A non-profit establishment approved by Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) that prepares and delivers meals to elderly people or people who are housebound, have a physical handicap, or otherwise have a disability that prevents the person from adequately preparing all their meals.

Medicaid — A state and federal cooperative program authorized under Title XIX of the Social Security Act (United States Code [U.S.C.], Title 42, Section 1396 et seq.) and Texas Human Resources Code, Title 2, Subtitle C, Chapter 32, that pays for certain medical and health care costs for people who qualify. Medicaid is also known as the medical assistance program.

Medicaid Card – An identification card issued to people determined eligible for Medicaid that verifies Medicaid coverage.

Medicaid Report – (Form H1146) — A form completed by a transitional Medicaid household in the fourth, seventh and tenth months of medical coverage to report earnings and household composition changes.

Medical Programs — Medicaid for:

  • Children Under 1 (TP 43)
  • Children 1-5 (TP 48)
  • Children 6-18 (TP 44)
  • Newborn Children (TP 45)
  • Pregnant Women (TP 40)
  • Parents and Caretaker Relatives (TP 08)
  • Medically Needy with Spend Down (TP 56)
  • Children Under 1 – Emergency (TP 35)
  • Children 1-5 – Emergency (TP 33)
  • Children 6-18 – Emergency (TP 34)
  • Pregnant Women – Emergency ( TP 36)
  • Parents and Caretaker Relatives – Emergency (TA 31)
  • Medically Needy with Spend Down – Emergency (TP 32)

Medical Support — Health insurance that absent parents will be ordered to get for their children who receive Medicaid when it is available at reasonable cost. Available at reasonable cost is usually defined as being available through the employer.

Migrant Farmworker in the Workstream — Farmworkers who travel to work in agriculture or a related industry and who are presently employed away from their permanent residence or home base.

Migrant Farmworker Not in the Workstream — Farmworkers who travel to work in agriculture or a related industry during part of the year, but who are presently living at their permanent residence or home base.

Military Member — A person in the U.S. Armed Forces or Reserves (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force or Coast Guard), National Guard (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard or Reserve Guard) or the State Military Forces or Texas State Guard.

Minor Child — A person under 18.

Minor Parent — A person under 18 who has a dependent.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) — The rules used to determine financial eligibility for certain Medical Programs that are based on Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax rules.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) Financial Eligibility — The result of a comparison between an applicant’s or recipient’s MAGI household income to the applicable Medicaid or Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) income limit based on the Federal Poverty Income Limit (FPIL) and the MAGI household size.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) Household Composition — The people whose income and needs are considered when determining eligibility for an applicant or recipient for certain Medical Programs based on tax status, tax relationships, living arrangement, and family relationships.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) Household Income — The sum of every person's MAGI individual income within an applicant’s or recipient’s MAGI household composition, that the standard MAGI disregard is subtracted from.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) Household Size — The number of people in an applicant’s or recipient’s MAGI household composition, including the number of unborn children, if applicable.

Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) Individual Income — The sum of certain income received by a person in a MAGI household composition, where certain expenses are subtracted.

Molar Pregnancy — Also known as hydatidiform mole, a molar pregnancy is considered a degenerating pregnancy. Conception occurs, but no fetus ever develops. A molar pregnancy is considered a normal pregnancy that terminates early because of miscarriage or abortion.

Monthly Obligation — The amount of child support which the absent parent has been ordered to pay each month.

Moving Expenses — Federal income tax deductible expenses an active duty member of the military may claim for relocating to a new duty station.


Negative Management — A household has negative management when its reported basic expenses exceed reported net income and resources plus support the HHSC excludes, such as vendor payments.

Newborn Child — A child receiving Type Program (TP) 45, Medical Assistance for Newborn Children, because the child's mother was eligible for and received Medicaid coverage at time of the child's birth or whose mother was eligible for and received Medicaid coverage retroactively for the time of the child's birth. The newborn Medicaid coverage can continue through the month of the child's first birthday if the child continues to live in Texas.

Non-Continuous Eligibility — A period of time when changes in circumstances may affect a person’s eligibility.

Nonconvertible Bond — A bond that cannot be converted to cash per program policy. Nonconvertible bonds are exempt resources.

Non-Employment and Training (E&T) Counties — Texas counties where the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) determines it does not have enough offices to help people who are mandatory work registrants. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) applicants and people in these counties are still subject to Basic Work Rule requirements with HHSC, but are exempt from E&T participation, and not subject to SNAP federal time limits.

Non-Immigrant — An alien temporarily admitted to the U.S. for a purpose other than permanent residency, such as a religious worker or a fiancé(e) of a U.S. citizen.

Nonliquid Resources — Resources such as vehicles, buildings, land, or certain other property that are considered countable. Exceptions are as explained in the vehicles portion of resource policy or unless the resource is specifically exempted.

Non-Public Assistance (NPA) Household — Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households where no one receives Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or only some of the members receive TANF.

Non-Secure Facility — A publicly operated community residence that serves no more than 16 residents, such as a county emergency shelter or non-public group or foster home.

Non-Traditional Retailer — A food retailer who operates in a farmer's market or as a roadside vendor.

Normal Living Expense — Items necessary for a SNAP household to carry on its normal daily activities. These items include housing, utilities, deposits for housing or utilities, food, clothing and incidentals. Incidentals include such things as normal day-to-day transportation, phone, laundry, medical supplies not paid by Medicaid, home remedies, recreation and household equipment.

Notice of Adverse Action — A notice provided to the household on TF 0002 that includes explaining the proposed adverse action, reason for the action, right to a fair hearing, and availability of continued benefits.


Office of Inspector General (OIG) — A division of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) created by the 78th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2003, to prevent and reduce waste, abuse, and fraud within the Texas Health and Human Services system.

Off-Line Transaction — The processing of Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) transactions using a manual voucher.

Ongoing Benefits — Benefits issued for months after the initial benefit month.

Opportunity to Participate — Providing a certified applicant with benefits, a Lone Star Card, personal identification number (PIN), and Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) training material.

Other-Related Temporary Assistance for Needy Families/Medical Program (TANF/MP) Child — An eligible child living with a relative other than the child's legal parent.

Overpayment — The amount of benefits issued in excess of what should have been issued.

Override — A Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) procedure that allows the user to make a change to the system-determined Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) results. This procedure can be used when policy has changed and TIERS has not yet been updated to process the policy change correctly. Overrides always require Second Level Review before they can be disposed.


Parent — A person with either a natural, biological, adopted or stepchild.

Parental Control — A minor who lives with an adult is under parental control if one of the following conditions applies:

  • the adult provides more than half of the minor's total support (housing is not considered as support);
  • the adult states that the adult has parental control of the minor; or
  • the minor lives with an adult other than the minor's parent or legal guardian and the minor's parent or legal guardian states that the adult has parental control of the child.    

    Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) foster care parents have parental control of the foster child even if the foster child's parent moves into the home. The name of the foster parent is displayed as Alternate Payee on the foster care Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) summary page in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS).

Parole— The discretionary and conditional release of an eligible offender sentenced to serve the remainder of the sentence under supervision in the community rather than prison.

Parolee — A person paroled into the U.S. under section 212(d)(5) of the INA for at least one year.

Participation Status — The designation of an Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) member as an eligible or ineligible member of the certified group. The participation status indicates whether the person is considered an adult or a child according to policy.

Passive Renewal — A process by which the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) automatically recertifies a Former Foster Care in Higher Education (FFCHE) active Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) for another certification period. This process occurs through a mass update and does not require action.

Payee — A person that the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits are issued to if  no one in the household qualifies or wants to be a caretaker. The payee must be within the required degree of relationship.

Payments to Civilians Relocated During Wartime — Payments made to Aleuts or people of Japanese ancestry or their heirs who were relocated during World War II.

Penalty on Early Withdrawal —A federal income tax deduction for people who withdrew money from a time-deposit savings account before the certificate maturing and who were charged a penalty for early withdrawal.

Pending — Awaiting conclusion.

Pending Correspondence — Forms or notices that have been generated on a case and are waiting to be processed in batch. All system-generated correspondence is sent to pending correspondence, but it can be retrieved and printed locally. Once correspondence is printed, whether in batch or locally, the record of the printing is stored in History Correspondence functional area. See Print Mode.

Periodic Income Check (PIC) — The process to determine whether electronic data indicates that there has been a change in the Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) household income that could make the recipient ineligible for certain Medical Programs. Changes in income identified through this process may impact eligibility for other programs.

Permissible Purpose — A federal requirement that allows staff to legally request a credit report from the Data Broker system for the sole purpose of determining eligibility. Permissible purpose means the person whose credit report is requested must be:

  • an applicant or a certified Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF);
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Medical Program household member or a member who would be certified but is disqualified; or
  • a Medical Program Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) household member.

Staff who request credit information without permissible purpose are subject to fines, imprisonment, or both. They are also subject to  disciplinary action from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).

Personal Account Number (PAN) — The 19-digit number on the front of the Lone Star Card representing the person’s Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account number on the EBT database. The PAN is not related to the person’s Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) case number.

Personal Identification Number (PIN) — A four-digit numeric code assigned to each cardholder and used to control access to the person's account. The PIN must be entered on a keypad before any electronic transaction can be processed.

Personal Identification Number (PIN) Security — Actions cardholders should take to prevent others from gaining access to their PIN and Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account. Instructions include not writing their PIN on the card sleeve or anything they carry in their purse or wallet, not revealing their PIN to anyone, or letting anyone use their card.

Personal Possessions — Possessions that include furniture, appliances, jewelry, clothing, livestock, farm equipment, and other items that an applicant uses to meet personal needs essential for daily living.

Personal Representative — A person who can represent another person's rights with respect to individually identifiable health information. Only a personal representative may authorize the use or disclosure of individually identifiable health information or obtain individually identifiable health information for a person.

Personal Responsibility Agreement (PRA) — A requirement for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) that certain people must follow  the conditions of the agreement. Noncompliance with the PRA results in a sanction.

Point-of-Sale (POS) Transaction — An electronic transaction using an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card to make a purchase, a cash withdrawal, or inquiry.

Power of Attorney (POA) — Written legal authorization to represent or act on another's behalf in private affairs, business, or some other legal matters.

Practitioner — A person who holds a license to practice medicine, including a physician (M.D.), osteopathic medical physician (D.O.), dentist (D.D.S.), advanced nurse practitioner (A.N.P.) or registered nurse (R.N.). Note: A licensed vocational nurse or licensed practical nurse does not meet the definition of practitioner.

Prepaid Burial Insurance — Insurance that pays for a specific funeral arrangement. Also known as a pre-need plan or prepaid funeral agreement.

Preschool Children — Children who are under six.

Presumptive Eligibility (PE) — Short-term Medicaid coverage provided to people determined potentially eligible for regular Medicaid by a qualified hospital or a qualified entity. This coverage is provided temporarily while the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) determines eligibility for regular Medicaid.

Primary Cardholder (PCH) — The person designated to receive and be responsible for the household's Lone Star Card. A household may designate a secondary cardholder who has a Lone Star Card and access to the household's Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account. The primary cardholder is usually the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) name, but the EDG may have an alternate payee who is the primary cardholder.

Print Mode — Indicates where historical correspondence was printed. Batch and Online are the types of print modes. Batch is correspondence managed by batch processing and printed at a central mail facility. All system-generated correspondence is scheduled for batch printing although it can be retrieved from Pending Correspondence and printed locally.

Print Type — Classification of historical correspondence as the original record or a reprint of the original. Each original correspondence is given a unique Correspondence ID (identifying number). Each reprint of an original has the same Correspondence ID as the original.

Priority Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Issuances — Expedited SNAP benefits, benefits issued on or after the 25th day from the date of application, and issuances ordered by a hearing officer decision that must be made available in order to meet fair hearing timeliness requirements. These issuances are available to the person the same day the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) is disposed.

Processing Time Frames — Number of days eligibility staff must complete a particular action.

Proration — Portion of total monthly benefits a household is entitled to receive.

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) proration is based on the number of days between the begin date of eligibility and the end of the first month of eligibility.
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) proration is based on the number of days between the file date and the end of the month.

Prospective Budgeting — Determination of eligibility for and the amount and type of benefits using the best estimate of the household's current and future circumstances and income.  

Protective Payee — Person selected to receive and manage the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefit when the caretaker is not using the TANF payments for the children's benefit. See Alternate Payee.

Prudent Person Principle — Reasonable decision made by staff based on the best information available and common sense in a particular situation.

Public Assistance (PA) Household — A Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) in which:

  • all eligible members receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA); or
  • some eligible members receive TANF or RCA, and all other eligible members receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), including SSI essential persons.

Public Institution — A facility that is either an organizational part of a governmental entity or over which a governmental unit exercises final administrative control. Examples of public institutions include county and city jails and Texas Department of Corrections prisons. Inmates of facilities that meet the definition of public institution are not eligible for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Medicaid. Note: See Publicly Operated Community Residence for additional information about a public facility not considered to be a public institution.

Publicly Operated Community Residence — A facility designed to serve up to 16 residents and to provide some services beyond food and shelter, such as social services, training in socialization, and life skills. An example of a publicly operated community residence that is not a public institution is a county homeless shelter with a capacity of up to 16 people. Residents of a publicly operated community residence are potentially eligible for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Medicaid. They are not considered inmates of a public institution.

Even if designed to serve up to 16 residents, the following facilities are not considered publicly operated community residences:

  • a facility located on the grounds of or immediately adjacent to any large institution or multi-structure complex;
  • an educational or vocational training institution; and
  • a correctional or holding facility for people who:
    • are prisoners;
    • have been arrested or detained pending disposition of charges; or
    • are held under court order as material witnesses or juveniles.


Qualified Entity (QE) — A Medicaid provider (in most instances but can also be an organization such as a school or clinic) that notifies HHSC of its election to make presumptive eligibility determinations and agrees to make presumptive eligibility determinations for pregnant women only, per HHSC policies and procedures. Qualified entities that are also Breast and Cervical Cancer Services (BCCS) contractors with the DSHS may make presumptive eligibility determinations for Medicaid for Breast and Cervical Cancer (MBCC) applicants.

Qualified Health Plan (QHP) — A private insurance plan that is certified by the Marketplace, provides essential health benefits, follows established limits on cost-sharing (such as deductibles, copayments, and out-of-pocket maximum amounts), and meets certain other requirements.

Qualified Health Professional — A person who provides care under the supervision of a licensed practitioner or a medical or dental practice that is state regulated.

Qualified Hospital (QH) — A Medicaid provider that notifies HHSC of its intent to make presumptive eligibility determinations and agrees to make PE determinations per HHSC policies and procedures. The qualified hospital may choose to make PE determinations for pregnant women, children under 19, parents and caretaker relatives of dependent children under 19, and former foster care children.

Quality Control — The functional area that supports the state's approach to quality control and allows authorized staff to enter sample selection criteria. Based on the criteria, TIERS generates a sample list.

Questionable Information — Information that is contradictory or incomplete.

Questionable Management — A household has questionable management when reported basic expenses exceed reported net income and resources.


Radiation Exposure Payments — A program to compensate a person for injury or death from exposure to radiation from nuclear testing and uranium mining. Make payments to the surviving spouse, children, parents, grandchildren or grandparents when the affected person is deceased.

Range of Payment — The highest to the lowest representative pay amounts used to determine the current ongoing budget.

Reactivation Date — The effective date to reinstate benefits for an  Eligibility Determination Group (EDG). Enter this for various situations including:

  • denied in error;
  • continued benefits for a denied EDG; 
  • reinstating Transitional Medicaid Assistance (TMA); and
  • reactivating an EDG without requiring a new application form.

Real Property — Land and any improvements on it.

Reapplication —

  • Timely – Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) application filed by the 15th of the last month of certification. This is also called a timely recertification or redetermination.
  • Untimely – SNAP application filed after the 15th of the last certification month. Treat an untimely reapplication the same as an initial application.    

    Note: Verification requirements are the same for both timely and untimely applications.

Reapplication Date — Date the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) receives a new application for redetermination or complete review of eligibility.

Reasonable Compatibility — The method of verification used for Medical Programs. It compares an applicant’s statement of income against income provided by electronic data sources.

Reasonable Opportunity — The 95-day period following the date a notice is sent to a person. This gives a source of citizenship or alien status verification for certain Medical Programs.

Rebuild EDG (Eligibility Determination Group) — A button in the Wrap Up  management group. It is used to apply cascade logic by reforming EDGs until establishing eligibility. See EDBC and Run EDBC.

Reception Log — The functional area in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) where office contacts by phone, mail, fax and in-person can be recorded.

Recognizable Needs — The maximum needs amount allowed by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) when determining eligibility.

Recoupment — Withholding part of a person's current benefit because of a previous overpayment.

Redetermination — A complete action to determine eligibility for a new certification period in a program.

Refugee —  A person admitted to the U.S. under Section 207 of the INA.

Reimbursement — Repayment for a specific item or service.

Reinstatement — Process of providing Transitional Medical Assistance (TMA) to a household denied because of failure to return a complete Medicaid Report.

Replacement Benefits — Benefits issued in specific situations to replace a previously authorized issuance received by the household.

Report Date — The date information is reported to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC). Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC) uses the discovery and report dates to determine if a required report of change is reported timely.

Reports — The functional area that:

  • collects information from throughout the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS); and 
  • produces reports that meet Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), state and federal reporting requirements. 

Representative Payee — In Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), a person designated to receive and manage the household's benefits for someone who is incapacitated or incompetent.  See Alternate Payee.

Resident Seasonal Farmworkers — Farmworkers who do not leave their permanent home to work in agriculture or a related industry.

Resources — Both liquid and nonliquid assets a person can convert to meet immediate needs.

Responsible Household Member — A household member who can assist in providing eligibility verification, completing the interview or reporting changes for the household’s case.

Restored Benefits — Full or partial months of benefits for a past month that are owed to a household due to an agency error.

Retroactive Benefits — Initial benefits issued for a month before the application is certified.

Review — Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) evaluative interview. It must take place before the person receives a seventh warrant.

Royalty — A payment to a person for permitting another to use or market property. This includes mineral rights, patents or copyrights.

RSDI — Retirement, Survivors and Disability Insurance benefits (RSDI) paid by the Social Security Administration.

Run EDBC (Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation) — A process in the Wrap Up eligibility management group used to determine eligibility of the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG). See EDBC.


Sanction — Either a disqualification or a penalty applied to a case or program because a person failed to follow a program requirement.

Scheduling — The functional area that manages eligibility appointments. See Batch Scheduling.

Second Chance Home — An adult-supervised living arrangement that provides independent living services to teen mothers and their children. Independent living services may include, but are not limited to:

  • case management;
  • counseling, mentoring;
  • parenting skills;
  • child development;
  • childcare services;
  • school-to-work transition services; and 
  • family reunification services. 

Second Level Review — Review of a case by a second party before the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) is disposed. The second party selects the Second Level Review interview mode.

Second Parent — This is the parent who is not the caretaker. It is when a child lives with both legal parents and both parents are requesting and are eligible for coverage.

Secondary Cardholder (SCH) — A person designated by the primary cardholder as eligible to access the person's Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) account with a second EBT card and personal identification number (PIN).

Secure Facility — Secure boot camp settings. These include a county holding facility for juveniles or a facility that a government unit exercises final administrative authority.

Self-Employed Health Insurance — A federal income tax deduction for self-employed people paying for health insurance for themselves, their spouse, their tax dependents, or their child(ren) under 27.

Self-Employed Individual Retirement Account (IRA), Simple IRA, and Qualified Plan Deductions — A federal income tax deduction for self-employed people or partners in a business.

Self-Employment Income — Earned or unearned income available from one's business, trade or profession rather than from an employer.

Self-Service Portal (SSP) — A web-based application, at It's available to applicants and Community Partners helping applicants to:

  • perform initial self-screening to check for potential eligibility;
  • apply for benefits online;
  • check application status;
  • check benefit and appointment status;
  • upload supporting documents;
  • make case changes;
  • submit redeterminations; and
  • view general benefit program information.

Also referred to as

Sibling — Brother or sister, including legally adopted and half-brothers and half-sisters.

Social Security Number — A unique nine-digit number assigned to a person by the Social Security Administration (SSA). The number is used to record covered wages, track Social Security benefits and for other identification purposes.

Special Immigrant Conditional Permanent Resident (SI CPRs) — Qualified noncitizens granted special immigrant status. They will become lawful permanent residents (LPRs) upon the removal of their conditions by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Special Immigrant Iraqi and Afghan (SIV) — A special immigrant status under 101(a)(27) of the INA may be granted to Iraqi and Afghan people who have worked on behalf of the U.S. government in Iraq or Afghanistan. The Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010, PL 111-118, enacted on Dec. 19, 2009, says SIV are eligible for all benefits to the same extent and the same period as refugees.

Special Review — A procedure to explore one or more areas of eligibility. This includes management and medical, at a specified time other than at application or complete action. A special review is conducted in Special Review mode. See Interview Mode and Case Mode.

Spend Down — The amount of excess income that the applicant must deplete with incurred medical bills before being certified as medically needy.

Spouse — A person who:

  • is married; or
  • lives with another person and they represent themselves to the community as married. See Common Law Marriage.

Standard MAGI Income Disregard — An income disregard equal to five percentage points of the Federal Poverty Income Limit (FPIL) for the applicable Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) household size.

Standard Medical Expense — A deduction applied to a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) budget. It’s given to an elderly household member, a household member with a disability, or both, who incur medical expenses of more than $35 but less than or equal to the standard deduction amount.

Standard of Need — Basic needs of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) families represented by a figure predetermined by the state of Texas per  the number of certified people  in the group. This figure represents food, clothing, housing, utilities  and incidentals. Incidentals include  normal day-to-day transportation, phone, laundry, medical supplies not paid by Medicaid, home remedies, recreation and household equipment.

Standard Utility Allowance (SUA) — A standard deduction for the cost of utilities. These are given to a SNAP household that either incurs a heating or cooling cost separate from the rent or received a Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) payment.

Standby List — Applicants who are awaiting an interview without a specific appointment. See Carryover Standby List.

State Data Exchange (SDX) — Computer tape from the Social Security Administration (SSA). It gives Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid information on Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) people. Social Security information is also available for people who receive SSI or Medicaid. SDX information can be used as a source of verification and is available in the Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS).

State Online Query — SOLQ allows states real-time online access to SSA's SSN verification service. SOLQ enables state  social services to rapidly get information they need to qualify people for programs.

Step Grandparent — The spouse of a blood-related grandparent.

Streamlined Reporting (SR) — Households where all adults are exempt from the 18-50 work requirements due to:

  • disability;
  • having a child under 18;
  • is a member of a SNAP EDG where a household member is under 18; or
  • being pregnant meet the SR criteria. 

Note: These households receive a six-month certification period. 

Subsistence — Life supporting or survival.

Sufficient Employment — Job earnings, other than seasonal work such as migrant or seasonal farm work, that would result in TANF ineligibility without including the 90  percent earned income disregard .

Summary Page — A page that lists a summary of all records available for the TIERS page. See Detail Page.

Supplemental Benefit — Additional benefits for a current month given to a household during a month the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) already issued initial or ongoing benefits.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — Past name was the Food Stamp Program.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Combined Application Project (SNAP-CAP) — A demonstration project that outreaches elderly Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients who are not currently certified for SNAP.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) — A needs-tested program administered by the Social Security Administration. It provides monthly income to aged people and persons who are blind or have a disability.

Suspended Benefits — The EDG is flagged to prevent the ongoing issuance of benefits until eligibility staff review the EDG.

System-Generated — Created by a computer system programmed with given parameters. For example, a notice is system-generated when an EDG is disposed. The notice contains programmed information based on the program, type of assistance, and eligibility result. See User-Generated.


Tax Dependent — A person who expects to be claimed by someone else as a dependent on a federal income tax return for the taxable year that Medicaid or Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility is requested. See Taxpayer.

Taxable Year — The 12-month period that a person uses to report income for federal income tax purposes. For most people, their tax year is the calendar year. A calendar tax year is 12 consecutive months beginning Jan. 1 and ending Dec. 31.

Taxpayer — A person or a married couple who expects:

  • to file a federal income tax return for the taxable year in which Medical Program eligibility is requested;
  • if married, to file a joint federal income tax return for the taxable year in which Medical Program eligibility is requested;
  • that no other taxpayer will be able to claim the person or the couple as a tax dependent on a federal income tax return for the taxable year in which Medical Program eligibility is requested; or
  • to claim a personal exemption deduction on the taxpayer’s federal income tax return for one or more applicants. This may or may not include the person or the person’s spouse.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) – Basic — Cash assistance for families that include a dependent child and no more than one eligible adult. The Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) name must be within the required degree of relationship to the dependent child.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Certified Child — A child who is included in a TANF grant.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families – Non-Cash (TANF-NC) — Consists of services for: 

  • family planning; 
  • adult education; 
  • the prevention and treatment of substance abuse; 
  • employment services; 
  • domestic violence; and 
  • Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) nutrition. 

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Redirect — A Texas Works message to TANF applicants delivered up front by Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) staff before the application process begins, explaining that:

  • TANF is temporary and has time limits;
  • there are other alternatives and options for the applicant instead of TANF benefits;
  • an applicant should consider jobs and other resources (such as child support) before pursuing TANF;
  • if an applicant chooses to apply for assistance, the person is requesting help finding a job; and
  • even if an applicant chooses not to apply for TANF, the person can still apply for Medical Programs and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to support employment while working toward self-sufficiency.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families – State Program (TANF-SP) — Cash assistance for families with a dependent child and at least two adults. Adults on the Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) must be legal parents (including a certified stepparent) to the dependent child. This includes legal parents and stepparents who are disqualified for one of the reasons listed in A-222, Who Is Not Included, No. 4, Disqualified Members, unless that disqualification is due to not meeting citizenship requirements.

Ten-Ten-Thirteen Concept — Time periods used to determine the first month of an over-issuance claim. The person has 10 days to report the change; staff have 10 days to act on the change. The notice of adverse action expires in 13 days.

Texas Health Steps — A health care program of prevention, diagnosis, and treatment for Medicaid people.

Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) — A computer system used to:

  • store individual and case information;
  • process eligibility determinations for multiple programs based on data provided through direct input and interfaces with other systems;
  • generate benefit issuance;
  • assist users in monitoring and managing workload; and
  • create correspondence and reports based on system-requested and user-requested criteria.

Texas Simplified Application Project (TSAP) — TSAP is a simplified application and certification process for SNAP. All members of a TSAP household must not receive earned income and must be either elderly or disabled as defined by SNAP program rules. People can apply using a simplified application, and they do not typically have to complete an interview at redetermination. TSAP provides a 36-month certification period.

Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) — The state governmental agency charged with overseeing and providing workforce development services to employers and job seekers of Texas. TWC is part of a local and state network dedicated to developing the workforce of Texas. The network is comprised of the statewide efforts of TWC along with planning and service provision by 28 local workforce boards on a regional level.

The Workforce Information System of Texas (TWIST) — The computer system used by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) for intake, eligibility determination, assessment, service tracking, and reporting of TWC-administered programs, such as child care, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Employment and Training, Choices, and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

Third Party — Person or organization outside the certified household.

Third-Party Resource — A source of payment of medical expenses other than the recipient or the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).

Three Months Prior — The three-month period before the Medicaid application month. Applicants who meet eligibility requirements during any of the months in this period receive Medicaid benefits for the eligible month(s).

Time Limit — The functional area where Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) state and federal time-limited months can be viewed. Authorized staff can correct months in this functional area.

Timely Disposed — An Eligibility Determination Group (EDG) that is completed in accordance with program timeliness standards.

Tip Income — Income earned along with wages paid by patrons to people employed in service-related occupations. These occupations include beauticians, waiters, valets and food delivery staff.

Trade Adjustment Assistance Act Program (TAAP) — A program for workers displaced by foreign workers.

Trafficking Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) —

  • The buying, selling, stealing, or otherwise effecting an exchange of SNAP benefits for cash or consideration other than eligible food, either directly, indirectly, in complicity or collusion with others, or acting alone. These benefits are accessed by:
    • Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards;
    • card and personal identification numbers (PINs); or
    • manual voucher and signature.  
  • Attempting to buy, sell, steal, or otherwise effect an exchange of SNAP benefits and using them for cash or something other than eligible food, either directly, indirectly, in complicity or collusion with others, or acting alone. These are benefits issued and accessed by EBT cards, card numbers and PINs, or by manual voucher and signature 
  • The exchange of firearms, ammunition, explosives, or controlled substances, defined in Section 802 of Title 21, United States Code, for SNAP benefits.
  • Purchasing a product with SNAP benefits with a container requiring a return deposit. The intention is to get cash by purposely discarding the product and returning the container for the deposit amount.
  • Purchasing a product with SNAP benefits with the intent of obtaining cash or something other than eligible food. This is done by intentionally reselling the product purchased with SNAP benefits in exchange for cash or consideration other than eligible food.
  • Intentionally purchasing products originally purchased with SNAP benefits in exchange for cash or consideration other than eligible food. 

Trafficking Victims — Victims admitted under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000.

Transitional Medical Assistance (TMA) — Medicaid coverage provided after denial of certain Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) because of new or increased earnings or new or increased spousal support income. EDGs denied because of new or increased earnings will receive a maximum of 12 months of coverage. EDGs denied because of new or increased spousal support income will receive a maximum of four months of coverage.

Trust — Property held by one person for the benefit of another.

Tuition or GI Bill Deduction — A federal income tax deduction for people who paid qualified tuition fees to eligible post-secondary educational institutions for themselves, their spouse or their dependents.

Type of Assistance (TOA) — The specific aid for one or more people in an Eligibility Determination Group (EDG). For example, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has two types of assistance: PA (public assistance) and NPA (non-public assistance).


Underpayment — Issuance of fewer benefits than an individual is entitled to receive.

Undocumented Alien — An alien living in the U.S. without the knowledge and permission of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Unearned Income — Payments received without performing work-related activities, including benefits from other programs.

Unreimbursed Assistance — Money paid in prior months in the form of public assistance under the Title IV-A program (that is, under the current Temporary Assistance for Needy Families [TANF] program or the former Aid to Families with Dependent Children [AFDC] program) that has not yet been recovered from collections that are applied to assigned arrears.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) — The government agency that oversees lawful immigration to the U.S. In 2003, USCIS officially assumed responsibility for the immigration service functions of the federal government. The Homeland Security Act of 2002 dismantled the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and separated the former agency into three components within the Department of Homeland Security. The:

  • USCIS provides immigrant services;
  • Immigration and Customs Enforcement handles immigration enforcement; and
  • Customs and Border Protection is responsible for border security functions.

User-Generated — Action generated directly by an individual's computer input. For example, a user can:

  • request an alert and send it to another user;
  • generate manual correspondence on a case; and
  • generate a manual issuance of benefits outside the normal eligibility process.

User Guide — A Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) help tool accessed by clicking on the Help icon in the upper right corner of TIERS pages. The User Guide includes information about numerous TIERS topics.


Vendor Payment — Payment made directly to the household's creditor or person providing the service by a person or organization outside the household.

Vested Interest — A situation or circumstance to which a person has a strong personal commitment.

Vested Retirement Account — An account to which an employee makes contributions for a specified period of time as defined by the employer. The employer does not match the money contributed by the employee until the defined period of time ends.

Veteran — A person who has served in the United States armed forces such as Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Space Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard. This includes a person who served in a reserve component of the armed forces and who was discharged or released, regardless of the conditions of their discharge or release.

Voluntary Quit — Leaving a job without good cause.


Waiver Counties — Texas counties with an unemployment rate over 10 percent. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) applicants and individuals in these counties are not subject to SNAP federal time limits because of the job market. They are still required to be registered for work with the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) and are mandatory participants if they do not meet work registration exemption requirements.

Waiver of Continued Benefits — An individual option to allow eligibility staff to process an adverse action during the individual's appeal process.

Welfare-to-Work — A federal program designed to support state and local efforts to move hard-to-employ Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients into unsubsidized jobs and promote their self-sufficiency.

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act — A federal program to streamline state workforce development systems combining job training, adult education and literacy, and vocational rehabilitation. The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act replaced the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

Wrap Up — The Texas Integrated Eligibility Redesign System (TIERS) program page in Data Collection where Eligibility Determination Groups (EDGs) are built and the Eligibility Determination Benefit Calculation (EDBC) is run to determine the highest level of eligibility or ineligibility. See Cascade LogicRebuild EDG, and Run EDBC.