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What do I need to give DHCD for “presumptive placement”?

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, Rosie's Place
Created June 2014

If it looks like you are eligible for shelter, you can give DHCD a few basic documents and tell them if you “have nowhere to stay.” They must place you in shelter right away. This is called “presumptive placement.” You need to give DHCD documents that prove:

  • your identity,
  • the relationship between the members of your family who need shelter,
  • who has custody of the children, and that
  • you live in Massachusetts.
What you need to prove to get presumptive placement from DHCD
What you need to prove Examples of documents that prove it
You do not need all of the documents on this list.
Identity of all adults
  • State licenses or ID cards
  • Birth certificates
  • Passports
  • Immigration documents
Identity of all children
  • Birth certificates
  • Passports
  • Immigration documents
  • Statement from school administration on letterhead
  • Statement from doctor on letterhead with name, date of birth and primary caregiver of each child
Relationship between family members
  • Birth certificates with names of parent(s)
  • Marriage certificate
  • Divorce papers
  • Adoption papers
Custody of all children
  • Birth certificate
  • Court approved adoption or guardianship order
  • School or medical records that show relationship of child to adult
  • Court order of divorce, child support or custody
  • Sworn statements from relatives or neighbors that say child spends most of their time with you
All family members live in Massachusetts Recent documents with a Massachusetts address, like:
  • Rent receipt or lease
  • Voter registration card
  • Written statement from the person you live with
  • School records
  • Utility or other bill
  • Letter from DTA or Social Security Administration confirming receipt of benefits

When DHCD gives you “presumptively placement”, they should give you a list of the rest of the documents they need. They call this list a “verification checklist”. You must give DHCD everything on the checklist in 30 days or they will decide you are not eligible for EA shelter.

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