Avoid These Things to Continue Housing Choice (Section 8) Assistance

Researcher & Writer
January 26, 2016

After being enrolled in the Housing Choice (Section 8) Voucher program, families must maintain eligibility in order to continue receiving voucher assistance. Your Public Housing Agency (PHA) may revoke your voucher assistance if:

  • A family does not meet program obligations
  • Any member of the household is involved in drug-related or criminal activity in or near the home
  • Any member of the household is making attempts to avoid prosecution, custody or imprisonment following a felony conviction
  • Any member of the household violates a condition of their parole or probation
  • Any member of the household engages in alcohol abuse or a pattern of abuse that jeopardizes the health, safety and overall wellness of other family members
  • Any member of the household commits fraud, bribery or other illegal act associated with a federal program
  • A family owes money to the PHA under any federal housing program
  • A family violates a PHA repayment agreement
  • A family violates the PHA’s absence policy (180 day limit in most areas)
  • Any member of the household has been evicted from public housing within the last 3 years
  • Any member of the household engages in or threatens violent or abusive behavior of PHA staff

Your PHA has the authority to stop housing voucher assistance if one or more family members are found to be engaging in any of the above activities. Though it is likely you will be denied further assistance if you break these rules, your PHA can exercise their discretion when determining if assistance should be continued in these cases. 

Your PHA may consider the severity of the violation and the impact that ceasing assistance will have on other family members. They may set a condition that the family member in violation must move out of the home if the family wants to continue receiving vouchers. However, there are 4 scenarios where a PHA must completely deny further Housing Choice (Section 8) Voucher assistance:

  • A family is evicted because of a serious lease violation
  • Any member of the household is convicted of manufacturing or producing methamphetamines in federal housing
  • Any member of the household doesn’t sign consent forms that allow your PHA to verify a family’s continued eligibility
  • A family doesn’t submit required documentation proving citizenship or eligible immigration status

You are required to update your PHA if any information in your original application has any changes. If a PHA finds that a family has provided false information or purposely omitted information, your assistance will be jeopardy. To continue receiving assistance, families should provide timely, accurate information as their PHA requests it.

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