Child Age, Citizenship, and Residence

CCDF regulations allow Lead Agencies to serve families with children younger than 13 years, or children who turn 13 during the eligibility period, (or through age 18 if the child is mentally or physically incapable of self-care or is under court supervision). Children must be U.S. citizens or qualified aliens, and must reside with parents, legal guardians, foster parents, or individuals acting in loco parentis. [1]

Lead Agencies are required to take into consideration children’s development and promote continuity of care when authorizing child care services.

Lead Agencies are required to have procedures for documenting and verifying that children receiving CCDF funds meet eligibility criteria at the time of eligibility determination and redetermination. Lead Agencies should note that there are no federal requirements for specific documentation or verification procedures.


[1] A “qualified alien” is

An alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence under the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”');
An alien granted asylum under section 208 of the INA;
A refugee admitted to the U.S. under section 207 of the INA;
An alien paroled into the U.S. under section 212(d)(5) of the INA for at least one year;
An alien whose deportation is being withheld under section 243(h) of the INA as in effect prior to April 1, 1997, or whose removal is being withheld under section 241(b)(3) of the INA;
An alien granted conditional entry pursuant to section 203(a)(7) of the INA as in effect prior to April 1, 1980;
An alien who is a Cuban or Haitian entrant as defined in section 501(e) of the Refugee Education Assistance Act of 1980; or
An alien who (or whose child or parent) has been battered or subjected to extreme cruelty in the U.S. and otherwise satisfies the requirements of Sec. 431(c) of the Act.

[Interim Guidance on Verification of Citizenship, Qualified Alien Status and Eligibility under Title IV of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, 62 Fed. Reg. 61,344 (Nov. 17, 1997).]