On October 6, 2015, Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts denied an application to stay a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upholding the U.S. Department of Labor's Home Care Final Rule. Therefore, the court's decision on August 21, 2015 took effect on October 13, 2015.
Enforcement of the final rule begins November 12, 2015. However, from November 12, 2015 through December 31, 2015, DOL will exercise prosecutorial discretion in determining whether to bring enforcement actions, giving strong consideration to the extent to which states and other entities have made good faith efforts to bring their home care programs into compliance.
The Home Care ruling addresses minimum wage and overtime protection policies in the following programs or services, including the Consumer Directed Services (CDS) Option:
For previous DADS alerts on the litigation, see "Department of Labor Appeals Home Care Ruling" and "Recent Court Decision Regarding Amended United States Department of Labor Regulations." For more information on the ruling, see DOL's webpage: http://www.dol.gov/whd/homecare/litigation.htm.
For further information, see the following DOL website at http://www.dol.gov/whd/homecare/; call DOL's toll-free information and helpline, 1-866-4USWAGE (1-866-487-9243), available 8am to 5pm in your time zone; or consult your legal counsel.
For CDS employers, DADS has reissued Information Letter 14-66, Impact of Department of Labor Companionship Exemption on Financial Management Services Agencies and Consumer Directed Services Employers (PDF), originally published on October 17, 2014.(10/14/2015)
Want to keep up with ICD-10 as implementation moves along? Then read the ICD-10 blog on their website.
In addition, the DADS ICD-10 News & Resources webpage includes links to this blog and other ICD-10 resources for providers.(10/5/2015)
On Sept. 1, 2015, providers must begin paying employed or contracted personal attendants who work in the following programs at least $8 an hour, up from the current $7.86 per hour minimum.
Newly employed or contracting attendants hired on or after Sept.1, 2015, must be notified of the required base wage level within 3 days of being hired.
Title 40 Texas Administrative Code §§49.312 requires that people working as personal attendants in the services/programs listed above, whether as employees or contractors of a provider or as employees or contractors of subcontractors, be paid at or above a specified minimum hourly base wage. The requirement to pay providers of CFC PAS/HAB, effective Sept.1, 2015, will be addressed in a future rule project.
Questions can be directed to Frank Plummer at 512-438-2188 or firstname.lastname@example.org.(8/27/2015)
The Texas OIG List of Excluded Individuals and Entities (LEIE) website is unavailable until June 22, 2015. DADS providers are required to continue to check the Federal OIG LEIE and attempt to access the State OIG LEIE. The State OIG LEIE screen will return a message, “This site is currently Unavailable, please check back later.” Providers should print this screen, keep it on file, and be sure to check the website again on Monday, June 22, 2015. If the search identifies an excluded individual or entity, please report to HHSC-OIG the identity of the excluded individual or entity and any amount paid to that individual or entity, by accessing the HHSC-OIG self-reporting protocol, Section III. (Unavailable until June 22, 2015).(6/19/2015)
DADS has published a new website that provides information about the upcoming ICD-10 transition. This website provides:
The ICD Conversion Code Lookup for Related Conditions is a tool that providers can use to help them identify Related Conditions codes that directly convert from ICD- 9 to 10.
DADS encourages providers to visit the website to learn more about the ICD-10 transition, which is scheduled for Oct. 1, 2015, and to keep up to date with information. Providers also can sign up for ICD-10 email updates.
For questions regarding this alert or general ICD-10 inquiries, please email ICD10@dads.state.tx.us.(6/4/2015)
Beginning June 1, 2015, DADS will begin accepting applications from entities requesting an award of CMP funds to fund projects and activities that benefit nursing facility residents.
Federal law (sections 1819 and 1919 of the Social Security Act) allows this use of funds obtained from CMPs imposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
If you have any questions about this process or alert, please call (512) 438-2626 or send questions to CmpApplication@dads.state.tx.us.(6/2/2015)
DADS plans to propose rules concerning personal attendant base wages. The rules apply to certain community services contractors, consumer directed services employers and financial management service agencies.
The proposed rules have a planned effective date of Sept. 1, 2015. Pending legislative approval of appropriations, the proposal will be presented to the Medical Care Advisory Committee on June 9, 2015, and the Texas Aging and Disability Services Council on June 11, 2015. The proposed rules are scheduled to be published in the Texas Register on June 26, 2015. Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted in accordance with the instructions in the notice of proposed rules.
The proposed rules will implement the 2016-17 General Appropriations Act (Article II, Special Provisions, House Bill 1, 84th Legislature, Regular Session, 2015), by requiring certain community services contractors and FMSAs to pay a minimum base wage to an employee or subcontractor of a contractor or an employee of a CDS employer providing certain attendant services. Specifically, the proposed rules will change the base wage certain contractors and FMSAs must pay a personal attendant from $7.86/hour to $8/hour. The proposed rules also will change the base wage an employer or designated representative must budget to pay an employee providing certain services through the CDS option from $7.86/hour to $8/hour.
The proposed increase in the base wage for a personal attendant will apply to:
Questions can be emailed to email@example.com.(5/26/2015)
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