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Eligibility Requirements

The Omaha Housing Authority (OHA) is responsible for ensuring that every individual and family admitted to the Housing Choice Voucher program meets all program eligibility requirements. This includes any individual approved to join the family after the family has been admitted to the program. The family must provide any information needed by OHA to confirm eligibility and determine the level of the family’s assistance.

To be eligible for the Housing Choice Voucher Program:

  • The applicant family must:
    • Qualify as a family as defined by HUD and the PHA.
    • Have income at or below HUD specified income limits.
    • Qualify on the basis of citizenship or the eligible immigrant status of family members.
    • Provide social security number information for family members as required.
    • Consent to the OHA collection and use of family information as provided for in OHA provided consent forms.
  • The OHA must determine that the current or past behavior of household members does not include activities that are prohibited by HUD or the PHA.

Chapter 3 of the Administrative Plan details Eligibility Requirements.Please click on the Administrative Plan link to review the chapter in detail.

Definitions of Terms

Cohead is an individual in the household who is equally responsible with the head of household for ensuring that the family fulfills all of its responsibilities under the program, but who is not a spouse. A family can have only one cohead.

 

Dependent is a family member who is under 18 years of age or a person of any age who is a person with a disability or a full-time student, except that the following persons can never be dependents: the head of household, spouse, cohead, foster children/adults and live-in aides.

 

Disabled Family is one in which the head, spouse, or cohead is a person with disabilities. Identifying disabled families is important because these families qualify for special deductions from income as described in Chapter 6.

 

Elderly Persons  is a person who is at least 62 years of age.

 

Family is defined by HUD as a single person or a group of persons, a family with a child or children, two or more elderly or disabled persons living together, and one or more elderly or disabled persons, with one or more live-in aides. The OHA has the discretion to determine if any other group of persons qualifies as a family.

 

Head of household means the adult member of the family who is considered the head for purposes of determining income eligibility and rent. The head of household is responsible for ensuring that the family fulfills all of its responsibilities under the program, alone or in conjunction with a coheador spouse.

 

Household is a broader term that includes additional people who, with the OHA’s permission, live in an assisted unit, such as live-in aides, foster children, and foster adults.

 

Income Limits determine the eligibility of applicants for HUD’s assisted housing programs, including the housing choice voucher program. The income limits are published annually and are based on HUD estimates of median family income in a particular area or county, with adjustments for family size.

 

Near-Elderly Person is a person who is at least 50 years of age but below the age of 62.

 

Persons with Disabilities under the HCV program, special rules apply to persons with disabilities and to any family whose head, spouse, or cohead is a person with disabilities. The technical definitions of individual with handicaps and persons with disabilities are provided in Exhibit 3-1. These definitions are used for a number of purposes including ensuring that persons with disabilities are not discriminated against based upon disability.

 

Spouse means the marriage partner of the head of household.

Types of Low-Income Families

  • Low-income family. A family whose annual income does not exceed 80 percent of the median income for the area, adjusted for family size.
  • Very low-income family. A family whose annual income does not exceed 50 percent of the median income for the area, adjusted for family size.
  • Extremely low-income family. A family whose annual income does not exceed30 percent of the median income for the area, adjusted for family size.

HUD may establish income ceilings higher or lower than 30, 50, or 80 percent of the median income for an area if HUD finds that such variations are necessary because of unusually high or low family incomes.