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Frequently Asked Questions
What is EVV?
A: Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) is a federal law, passed by Congress in 2016, that requires non-live-in IHSS providers to electronically document, via the state’s Electronic Services Portal (ESP) or Telephonic Timesheet System (TTS), the following:
- Type of service performed
- Individual receiving the service
- Date of the service
- Location of service delivery
- Individual providing the service
- Time the service begins and ends
How does California’s current EVV system work?
A: Currently, an IHSS provider is required to document the start time, end time and location of service (home, community or both), in the provided fields on their electronic timesheet, through the ETS portal. However, those data fields do not need to be completed in real time at the start and end of each shift.
What are the proposed changes to EVV and who do they impact?
A: Beginning July 1, 2023, a non-live-in provider must log-in at the start of services and then log-out at the end of services using either the IHSS EVV Mobile Application, Electronic Services Portal (ESP) or Telephone Timesheet System (TTS). If they note that they are providing services in the home, the system will capture their location. If they are providing services in the community (example: grocery shopping, etc.), the system will NOT capture their location. The compromise by CA and the federal government will only capture the location of services when a non-live-in provider is providing services in the recipient’s home. The state is given the address of the recipient’s home during the assessment process to become an IHSS recipient, so no additional personally identifiable data will be tracked.
Why is California changing the current EVV system?
A: Federal law requires EVV systems to electronically capture the location of non-live-in IHSS/WPCS providers at the start and end of each workday to ensure the recipients are receiving their home care services in their home. Currently, the system doesn’t require the capturing of the start time, end time and location of service to be done in real-time. California must update the current EVV system to be in compliance with the Federal law or financial penalties to the state will continue to be assessed by the federal government.
What advocacy has the union done around EVV?
A: Since its passage, Local 2015 has joined our brothers and sisters in the disability rights and recipient advocacy communities to ensure that the system for EVV is as minimally invasive and the least burdensome as possible. As a result, California implemented a system that both providers and recipients felt was manageable and protected individuals’ rights to privacy. We continue to engage with CDSS and advocates
during this process to bring our state into compliance with federal law in a way that does not disadvantage the provider or recipient.
Who is required to comply with EVV?
A: Only IHSS/WPCS providers who do NOT live with their recipient.
How does the state know if someone is a live-in provider?
A: CDSS knows who is a live-in provider based on if a provider has filled out a form SOC 2298. A provider has the ability to identify themselves as being a live-in provider at the beginning of each pay period via the ESP or by submitting the form to their county IHSS office.
If a non-live-in provider is performing services in both the home and the community, what is the process for checking in and out?
A: The only time a non-live-in provider has to identify where they are is when they check-in and check-out. If they are in the community when they start their shift, they would identify as such when they check-in, and if they end their shift at the recipient’s home, they would identify that they were at the home. The reverse would also apply. The system only captures location when the individual checks in and out at the beginning and ending of each shift.
Will my geo-location be captured when I check-in in the community?
A: Geo-location will only be captured when a non-live-in provider checks in or out at the recipient’s home. Geo-location will NOT be captured when a provider check-in or out of the community.
When will these changes to EVV be implemented?
A: These changes to the current EVV system will be fully implement in California beginning July 1, 2023 and will apply to all non-live-in providers.
I am a live-in provider. Will I still be subject to EVV?
A: NO. Live-in providers are only required to report the daily and total hours worked on their timesheet.
I am a live-in provider. Will I need to change how I complete my timesheets?
How do I identify myself as a live-in provider?
A: The Electronic Services Portal and Telephone Timesheet System will automatically exclude anyone who has self-certified that they live with their recipient by submitting an IHSS and WPCS Program Live-In Self Certification Form (SOC 2298), and you will not have to take any action. If you are a live-in provider and have not completed an SOC 2298, you can access the form on the ESP by clicking the “Financial” tab or via a paper form found on the CDSS website at the following link: https://www.cdss.ca.gov/cdssweb/entres/forms/English/SOC2298.pdf You can also contact your county IHSS office to request a copy.
Will the government be tracking my location and movements?
A: Geo-location will only be captured at the time the non-live-in provider checks-in and checks-out of the recipient’s home. No location will be captured while the provider works or when a provider identifies as being in “the community” when they check-in or out.
What is wrong with the current system? Why is the system being changed to include GPS?
A: Based on our IHSS stakeholder feedback not to utilize GPS, CDSS submitted a plan to the federal Centers on Medicare/Medicaid Services (CMS) that required providers to enter their location into an electronic system rather than utilizing GPS. However, CMS has now determined that our current process does not meet the federal requirement that the non-live-in provider’s location must be electronically captured at the beginning and end of services being provided. California has been paying a fiscal penalty since January 1, 2021 for being out of compliance with federal law.
How do I download the IHSS EVV Mobil Application?
A: Providers can download the free IHSS EVV Mobile App on their phone to easily check-in at the beginning of their work shift and check-out at the end of their work shift. For iPhone users, the app is located in their Apple App Store. For Android users, the app is located in Google Play. The apps will be available as early as June 2023.
What if I forget to check in or out or I make a mistake?
A: Providers will still be able to review and correct their timesheet before they are submitted for approval, just as providers can do today.
I don’t have a smart phone. How do I access the mobile app?
A: The mobile app will be accessible through any app-enabled device including your tablet. Providers can also easily check-in and check-out with their home computer from the Electronic Services Portal or via the Telephonic Timesheet System.
I don’t have access to a smart phone or computer. How do I check-in and check-out?
A: Providers will still have access to checking-in and out through the Telephone Timesheet System. The IHSS TTS is being modified to electronically confirm location when the provider uses the recipient’s land line telephone and calls TTS to check-in and check-out. Check-in and out information will auto-populate on the provider’s electronic timesheet.
What if I am traveling with my recipient? Can I travel out-of-state?
A: A provider is permitted to travel within California and out-of-state with their receipt. When traveling, the provider must select “community” when checking in and out.
What if I work for multiple recipients?
A: Each day you will be required to check in and out for any recipient you work for. The start times and end times can overlap. You will still need to make sure you capture the number of hours you work each day for each recipient just like you do today. You will still need to submit a timesheet for each recipient you work for.
Does EVV require providers to check-in and out throughout the day for every service they preform?
A: NO. Providers will only have to check in and out once per day for each recipient they work for.
When a provider is servicing a new recipient who is not in the provider’s portal system, how does a provider check-in or out? Will the provider’s geo-location be captured?
A: The provider will complete their timesheet retroactively as they currently do. The geo-location will not be captured when completing their timesheet retroactively.
What is the difference between capturing a provider’s geo-location and GPS monitoring?
A: EVV will only use geo-location. GPS tracks an individual’s location and movements live. Geo-location takes a snapshot of a non-live-in provider’s location only when they check-in at the recipient’s home.
Does it matter whose device a provider uses to check in and out?
A: It does not matter what device or whose device the provider checks-in with as long as the provider uses their own account.
Will my geo-location be captured when I check-in in the community?
A: A non-live-in provider’s geo-location will only be captured when they check-in or out at the recipient’s home. If a provider checks-in and/or out of the community, their geo-location will NOT be captured.
Will I be penalized if I make an error?
A: NO. State law protects IHSS providers from being penalized for making an error.
The instructions state that a provider must check-in at the beginning of their shift and to check-out at the end of their shift. What happens if the shift crosses over two days?
A: If a provider’s shift crosses over between two days, they will check-out at midnight and immediately check back in. DSS is currently seeking to automate this process in order to avoid disruption in care.
Why are live-in providers exempt from EVV?
A: Live-in providers are exempt from EVV due to guidance provided from the federal government.
Will a provider’s location be captured when they correct their timesheet at a later date?
A: A provider’s location will not be captured when retroactively completing or editing their timesheet.
Can I use my cell phone to check-in via TTS?
A: A provider can only use a landline telephone to check-in via TTS.
How do I check-in if my recipient uses both WPCS and IHSS?
A: Currently, providers will have to check-in separately for providing WPCS and IHSS services to the same recipient. CDSS is researching how to automate this process.
Am I able to check-in using TTS if my home phone receives service using internet bandwidth rather than a traditional landline connection?
A: CDSS is currently researching the answer to this question.
Are providers paid for the entire time between checking-in and checking-out?
A: Providers will only be paid for the time spent providing services to the recipient, which is current practice.