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Logan v. State of New Jersey, Department of Community Affairs

A-5575-01T5 (N.J. Super. App. Div. 2003) (Unpublished)

SECTION 8—A Section 8 recipient is required to report social security income belonging to resident children even if the payee is a non-resident spouse and even if a Section 8 recipient no longer has to pay any part the rent, the recipient is still required to report prior non-payment eviction proceedings to the Department of Community Affairs.

The Appellate Division affirmed the Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA) determination to terminate a tenant’s participation in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. The DCA terminated the tenant’s Section 8 benefits after it determined that: (a) the tenant misrepresented her income in her initial application by failing to include social security benefits that were being paid to several of her children; (b) that an unauthorized person was living in her home; and (c) that she failed to notify the DCA that an eviction complaint was filed against her. The Appellate Division, in affirming the DCA’s decision, rejected the tenant’s claim that she did not need to report the social security income because her children’s father was the payee and not her. The program participation rules required the tenant to report any income received by occupants of the apartment, including social security benefits. Since the tenant’s children were the beneficiaries of the benefits, the social security income needed to be reported. The tenant also claimed that she was not obligated to notify the DCA about the default and eviction proceeding because the DCA gave her a rent adjustment that no longer required her to pay a portion of the rent. She argued that since she no longer paid a portion of the rent, she no longer had a requirement to notify DCA about the eviction proceeding. The Court, in rejecting her claim, found that the tenant was required to advise the DCA about her default in paying her rent for the period prior to her receiving a rent adjustment because the tenant was responsible for paying rent for the period prior to the rent adjustment.

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