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Effective July 1, 2021
This Existing Business Policy is used to guide DVR staff working with consumers whose goal is to maintain their existing business. Through this policy, DVR assists existing business owners with information, referral and assistive technology costs that are due to disability-related factors negatively impacting the performance of the consumer's essential job task functions.
Assistive Technology (AT) is any item, device, or piece of equipment used to maintain or improve the functionality of people with disabilities, allowing them to be more independent in education, employment, recreation, and daily living activities. AT includes the services necessary to get and use the devices, including assessment, customization, repair, and training.
This policy is not designed for:
DVR policy does not support:
If the business type is not supported (as listed above):
The application process, eligibility determination and vocational guidance and counseling for all consumers, including existing business owners, should not vary from the standard process. Development and provision of services for an Individual Plan for Employment (IPE) with a vocational goal related to maintaining an existing business requires additional steps. These steps are described in this policy and are to be reviewed with the consumer.
As with any complex set of vocational rehabilitation services, please consult with your WDA team and management as appropriate. Use the DVR Exception Process when applicable. DVR Exception Process Form
These conversations will inform the consumer about the DVR process and gather information necessary to determine the appropriate DVR path. Please share the Overview of Steps with the consumer and review the information below.
Information will be gathered to assess and determine the consumer's ability to perform their essential job task(s) safely in their work environment. This is necessary to determine if the vocational goal and continuing with the Existing Business Policy is appropriate.
The Employment and Wage Assessment is used to determine if wages earned meet competitive, integrated employment (CIE).
The self-employment IPE is developed for the approved vocational goal. It will include the necessary services, responsibilities, progress measures and timelines established to address the disability-related factors.
The AT Assessment is provided to determine reasonable, necessary, and appropriate assistive technology devices and services available to address documented disability and health-related limitations.
Assistive Technology Device is defined by the Federal AT Act as: Any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.
Assistive Technology Service is defined by the Federal AT Act as: The term ‘assistive technology service’ means any service that directly assists an individual with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device.
Assistive Technology used as accommodations provide a disability-related device or service required by the worker that is not typically required by non-disabled individuals performing the same or comparable job tasks. These accommodations are necessary due to job-related limitations caused by the disability. DVR may participate in the purchase of assistive technology services and equipment identified as necessary for the consumer to perform the essential functions of their job task(s). Addendum B DVR Fee Schedule
Examples include, but are not limited to, a change or adjustment to a job (including reassignment or altering of job task(s)), use of adaptive equipment (i.e., screen readers, fatigue mats, carts, adjustable height tables, speech recognition), modifications necessary to perform a job duty (i.e., steps on a tractor; modified steering wheel or throttle), etc.
The recommendations in the AT Assessment report will be discussed to determine if the suggested assistive technology will address the limitations.
The IPE is amended to include the DVR supported assistive technology and agreed to timelines. DVR purchase of service does not begin until the services and goods are included in the IPE and all consumer obligations have been met.
During this time it is critical that DVR staff and the consumer remain in contact and have frequent updates on the progress of the case. DVR staff should continue to provide guidance and counseling and DVR services as necessary and appropriate.
Case closure occurs 90 days after all assistive technology DVR has agreed to provide has been received, is operational and the consumer has stability in performing their essential work task(s).