73. Where do I apply for EAEDC?
Apply for EAEDC at your local DTA office. 106 C.M.R. § 702.130. All DTA offices are open from 8:00AM to 5:00PM. If you are sick or disabled and cannot go to the office, tell the local office you want a home visit. 106 C.M.R. § 701.600. To find the address, phone number and key contact information for your local DTA office, see Appendix H.
Be sure to sign an application the first time you go into the DTA office. You can do this even if there is no worker there to take your application. 106 C.M.R. § 702.115 (B). The date you sign is the earliest date your benefits will begin if you are approved. 106 C.M.R. § 702.150. If you cannot get a DTA application form, write a request for EAEDC (and SNAP) on a piece of paper and sign the paper.
Everyone has the right to apply without delay, whether or not you appear to be eligible. You have the right to sign an application even if the worker thinks you are not eligible. 106 C.M.R. § 702.115(A).
DTA sometimes issues a “No Trespass Order” barring certain people from the DTA office. DTA Online Guide: Cross Programs > No Trespass Page Indicator and Page. This may not be legal. If it is a problem for you, call the Ombuds Office, 617-348-5354, which should make sure that you can apply and get your benefits on time.
DTA must provide a bilingual case manager or assistant or professional interpreter if you want one and you use American Sign Language or your primary language is not English, regardless of language, national origin or non-citizen status. See Question 82. There are no magic words you have to say to request an interpreter. A professional interpreter may be provided in-person or
by telephone. 106 C.M.R. § 701.360; DTA Online Guide: Cross Programs > Interpreter Services > Guidelines for Providing Interpreter Services; DTA Operations Memos 2013-64 (Dec. 19, 2013), 2013-11
(Mar. 19, 2013); DTA Field Operations Memo 2008-16 (Apr. 1, 2008).
You can use your own interpreter if you want, but you cannot use a child to interpret for you except to schedule an appointment. Children under age 12 cannot be asked to interpret for any purpose. 106 C.M.R. § 701.360.
You have the right to refuse a particular interpreter if you are uncomfortable with the interpreter for personal or other reasons. You don’t have to give a reason. DTA must then provide a professional telephone interpreter
DTA Online Guide: Cross Programs > Interpreter Services > Guidelines for Providing Interpreter Services; See also DTA Operations Memo 2013-11 (Mar. 19, 2013); DTA Field Operations Memo 2008-16 (Apr. 1, 2008).
If you have a vision, hearing or communication impairment, DTA should give you a chance to say or show what will help you understand what DTA is telling you and communicate with DTA. See DTA Operations Memo 2013-64 (Dec. 19, 2013).
If DTA does not offer you interpreter services in your language, you can file a complaint with the DTA Language Access Coordinator or the Office of Access and Opportunity. You must file your complaint in writing within 6 months of when you were denied interpreter services.
- To file a complaint with the DTA Language Access Coordinator submit your written complaint to:
Associate Commissioner for Program & Policy Implementation
Department of Transitional Assistance
600 Washington Street Boston, MA 02111
- To file a complaint with the Office of Access and Opportunity submit your written complaint to:
Office of Access & Opportunity
Office of the Governor
State House, Room 373
Boston, MA 02133
Email Address: Jabes.Rojas@state.ma.us
You can find DTA’s Language Access Plan at https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2016/11/rc/dta-language-access-2016_0.pdf