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IHSS Recipients

Senior man with care worker at home
Basic Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for IHSS you must:

  • Be 65 years old or older, blind, and/or disabled as defined by Social Security Administration (SSA) standards.  Disabled children are also potentially eligible for IHSS;
  • Be a United States citizen or a noncitizen with satisfactory immigration status;
  • Be a California resident;
  • Live in your own home.  Hospitals, nursing homes, and licensed community care facilities are not considered “own home”;
  • Be eligible for Medi-Cal benefits:
  • Receive or be eligible to receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or State Supplemental Payments (SSP); or
  • Meet all SSI/SSP eligibility criteria except for income or citizenship or immigration status.
  • Applicants who do not receive SSI/SSP payments or Medi-Cal benefits must first be determined to receive Medi-Cal benefits under Medi-Cal rules and regulations;
  • Individuals with income above the SSI/SSP limits, may be required to pay for a portion of their IHSS benefits.  This is called a “Share of Cost”.  A “Share of Cost” means you may be required to pay for a portion of your IHSS benefits directly to your provider.
  • Participate in a home assessment interview; and
  • Obtain a health care certification from a licensed health care professional (physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, etc.) indicating that you are unable to safely perform one or more activities and without IHSS, would be at risk of placement in out-of-home care. Applicants may provide the following form to certify their need for IHSS.
  • Personal property may not exceed $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a couple.
  • Properties that will not count in determining your eligibility:
  • The home you own and live in;
  • One automobile needed for transportation to appointments or work; and
  • All life insurance policies if the combined face value is not more than $1,500.

Properties that will count

  • Cash on hand;
  • Checking and saving accounts;
  • Value of stocks, bonds, and trust deeds;
  • Value of real property other than the home you own or live in;
  • Additional automobiles and recreational vehicles; and
  • Promissory notes and loans.
Recipient Frequently Asked Questions