This section shows how to gather and verify an applicant’s basic information.
What information should I capture?
OCC recommends gathering only basic identifying information for the applicant. For example, collect name and date of birth. Do not ask for non-essential information. Doing so can cause hesitation and may dissuade some families from applying.
Verifying an applicant's identity, including examples
Per the CCDF rule at 45 CFR 98.20(c), “a Lead Agency or other administering agency may not condition a child's eligibility for services under § 98.50 based upon the citizenship or immigration status of their parent or the provision of any information about the citizenship or immigration status of their parent.” Therefore, Lead Agencies must provide applicants options to verify their identity that do not depend on citizenship or having a SSN.
For example, Lead Agencies should allow applicants to submit one of the following: public benefits award letters showing their name, school ID, work ID, school records, medical records, foreign passports, foreign birth certificates, foreign driver’s license, consular ID, US driver’s license, US birth certificate, US passport, or any other document that reasonably verifies identity. To view how this can be done, view Documentation upload.
Practices that minimize applicant burden
From select Lead Agencies’ FY2022-FY2024 CCDF Plans
- “Applicant self-declares their identity at the time of initial application and that is verified through access to other Department of Social Services programs such as SNAP, Medical assistance or TANF program and Division of Child Support. If no verifiable information is available, the applicant is required to provide additional verifications such as a birth certificate, Social Security card, driver’s license or identification card.”
- “The applicant must provide a valid source of identification, such as a driver's license or birth certificate, to confirm that they are the person applying for child care assistance. Documentation is required at application. Families can sign a written statement to self-verify their identity if other documentation is not available.”
- “Applicant statement, birth certificate, driver’s license, passport are forms of verification used at initial application to verify identify.”
Example application screens
Capture applicant’s information
What's included in the Guide
Defining, collecting, and verifying eligibility information
Guidelines for designing a successful online application
Making changes while maintaining program integrity